I wanted to write a funny story.
I already started a fancy, almost italian, story. I left the last part for the evening to make sure I would have taken all the images of the day to complete.
I am taking the darkness, the silence, some italian music to write about something else. I cannot avoid to write about this story. It is even gonna be guessed. Unfortunately, most probably, everything is not totally real will appear sweeter here than in the truth.
Walking back home. few hundred meters from the compound where we live in a still poorly furnished house. we have mattresses, stove, some dishes, some cups, forks,spoons, knife, blankets. few other things. But it’s our house. And we will build it up as the story of our team experience in this unexpected country.
I am on my back home before the next meeting of the day. at the side of the street, in the middle of the grass something has happened. People are stopping on the side walkers. They look at something. Someone is speaking to other people. Someone looks in silence. Someone pass by. “what has happened?”
Sitting on a rock in the middle of the grass one woman. I am not able to say how old can she be. I would guess 40. Maybe it doesn’t really matter.
She is desperate. Alone.
On her figure, heavy as rocks, 3 children.
One child is hugging her from the back, hiding his face behind her body. As if he needs to avoid the bad man of the tales. As if he would be one of that number of children listening about of bad men from “happy ending” tales.
One child is trying to find his place under her harm. Touching her caller. Feeling her breathe. looking for her cares. As if he is dreaming about the moments when mum was back from a long working day and smiling she was caring about her children.
One child is grabbing her Knees. He is scared. He is tearing. He doesn’t want to let her go anywhere then there. With him. He cannot move any single step without her.
Sitting on the rock, looking nowhere, silently crying: a woman. Her 3 children. Loneliness.
Is very strange, but seems that all around human nature, in diverse ways, push us to take care of other human beings. Everytime we see car accident we would like to stop. To check. In case we know what to do and we could support. I am trying to stand as many poor and disgraced scene around the city. But this is too strong to seem to be unreal. This cannot be something organized by any criminal organization for exploitation. This cannot be any of the number of stories turning into metropolitan legend around beggar of big cities. I ask.
“what has happened?” “you don’t really wanna know”
whatever it is, that picture is already telling to much of truth.
From a shoeshiner we know: she has been kicked off the house because she was not able to pay the rent.
what is gonna happen to her? What will happen to this children? Which will be their future? How can they make a change in their life needing to start from nothing? How will she take care of them?
will she have a second chance?
This are the moment in which I understand what does really mean to be European. What does Welfare state means?
There are many different definitions of Welfare, from Lord Beverage on. There is just one aspect of the welfare state which is very much touching: The State Cares about you. It cares. It gives you human rights. It gives you support. You morally deserve it or not, you will have it.
Welfare State is the condition of not being alone. Welfare State means have the right to have a future. Welfare State means not to pay for the mistake of your parents.
I don’t really want to know. I really want to tell this story. I really believe people deserve the right to be wrong. And to have a second chance.