Diary of a Caciocavallo Impiccato
It was just me in Milan that summer. A handful of cars parked under the house and my Chinese neighbor coming out and entering the apartment across the landing at the usual times. That year I had pulled straight until the last week of August: still a website to fix, a few extra bucks to spare and the pleasure of enjoying the warm quiet of the almost deserted city before departure for the big trip. Destination: Cappadocia.
But what happens to everyone once in their lives or in the worst nightmares has happened. The swollen backpack ready on the sofa in a horizontal position, in the hand of the passport and that lingering in not knowing in which pocket to slip it. The mobile phone rang and on the other hand a woman's voice told me in English that No, my plane to Turkey would never leave Italian soil that morning due to violent manifestations of popular dissent that have taken place in the main urban centers of the country. I am so sorry.
End of the shortest trip I have ever undertaken, therefore: from the undone bed to the sofa in my house and in the distance only the mirage of a refund at 60 days of the cost of the ticket.What is to be done now?Standing staring at the backpack, the most precious relic now desecrated, the passport tightened in one sweaty hand, the mobile phone vibrated in the other. Sender: Luke. Message: "So, do you count among the guests next weekend? Let me know as soon as possible what my mother's opinion is."
Luca and I studied together at politecnico. Then he returned to Pignola, a small village in Lucania, to marry Luisa, the old girlfriend, and live happily ever after. For days he had been looking for me by email and on the phone to propose to me to celebrate the 10th anniversary of graduation and now fate had decided for us.
Basilicata we are coming…
No Turkey and yes to Basilicata. In the midst of so much improvisation, a single certainty: Bla Bla Car, slow and low cost solution, the prayer to happen with fellow travelers who speak neither too much nor little and the driver who …
The driver is called Saverio, southern doc, has dreamy eyes and a relaxed smile of those who know who is in every place and situation. It is volcanic, loves music and an endless list of things, people, ideals and food, in particular it tells me about the Hanging Caciocavallo, a tradition of its parts and soon a project to launch, a world of values and flavors that once tasted can no longer be glimpsed.
And down to extraordinary tales of anecdotes, ancient customs and customs throughout the journey culminated in an invitation to a day stop at his house to witness and enjoy the rite of hanging and celebrate properly the beginning of the well-deserved summer holidays.
So Me, Luca, Luisa and saverio's whole family including old people and children find ourselves loaded with food for a picnic in the woods. Saverio carefully chose a corner and set up the scene.The embers smoked slowly and hung on a low branch of oak lay him, the Caciocavallo: round, genuine and tasty, ready to melt like no other cheese. All around: a chorus of voices screams "hang us", the joy of the party between enthusiastic young people and elderly storytellers, the pleasure of meeting, the music of a time gone and of a present that, after all, is not so bad.
Looking back on the Hanging Caciocavallo…
Two weeks later, lying on the sofa of my house, I was still wrapped in the magic of that land and the scent of the Hanging Caciocavallo. I then called Saverio to tell him again thank you and learn more about that crazy project to revive the experience of hanging even at home.
After two days, the courier handed me a box with an auction inside to hang a fragrant sweet caciocavallo, along with honey, truffle, fried crusque pepper and a bottle of Aglianico DOC.
The Sunday after Carla a photographer friend, Alberto a colleague and his girlfriend Sandra journalist, were guests with me. Together we staged the ancient rite of Caciocavallo Hanged by melting it on a fragrant bruschetta. In turn we have evoked distant stories and landscapes and agreed on one point: it is incredible what can happen from a seemingly negative unexpected if we only decide to be surprised by life.