My name is Marzia, I am 15 years and live in Rome.
I have the luck to be able to see advantages and disadvantages of living in a village or in a city large as Rome because my parents have a house located in Poggio Cinolfo (approximately 480 inhabitants, at Abruzzo, Aquila) near one of the most beautiful mountain chains of Gran Sasso.
The first advantage is clean air and tranquility, the absence of traffic, the absence of stress and acoustic chaos. Breathing fresh air, smelling all the perfumes that nature in spring gives us or in winter that characteristic perfume of the fireplaces turned on; of chestnuts on the fire; of that odor of the fermenting grapes after the harvest during autumn. In summer, the village is in holidays and it becomes a large family, and with the rich harvesting, preserves are preserved for the long winter, like tomatoes, vegetables in oil or pickled, and much more delicacies.
It's beautiful to open the window and to greet the passers in pajamas, we know everyone, we help each other, we exchange harvested products and homemade desserts.
Of course, living in a village has its sacrifices because you must always cultivate the ground and feed animals such as pigs, hens, calves, rabbits and sheep, both in winter and in the summer, but it is done with pleasure and everyone in the family helps, even if a little bit. In the villages you mainly purchase small things like detergents, you eat what you have and what you produce.
The clean roads, green areas, invite you to make long walks, being immersed in the deepest thoughts.
From spring until the arrival of winter we organize many folkloristic and typical parties, all prepared by a group of volunteers who do it all with lots of passion, while the inhabitants of the village decorate streets and houses for the party. During Christmas it seems to be in of Saint Nichola’s village. It is so beautiful during events (even like weddings, religious happenings or funerals), because the streets become crowded, we all reunite, it almost looks like Rome.
We always say that the only regret could be the sea (is far away from Poggio).
We youngsters have a lot to do, we organize our activities the whole day long therefore our friendship becomes very strong, it is one for all and all for one.
I do have to admit that going to school (like high school) is a bit complicated. My friends need to take public transport; therefore, they need to wake up at dawn and during winter, with ice and snow, is not very inviting to go out.
Their parents work in Rome (the capital), because around here there are not many working opportunities, also because houses here in Poggio are much cheaper compared to a decent apartment in the city. This going up and down between village and city can be very stressful and requires sacrifices, for example most of the times only the father works, while the mother stays home taking care of the children and of the house.
In my village, the local dialect is spoken, even amongst us youngsters, it is just fun to speak like that and we all have a good laugh.
There is no crime around there, which is so good. One protects the other, defending each other like one big family against the “foreigners” (people who don’t live in the village). Foreigners always arouse suspicion and curiosity.
Elderly people want to go to bed early, waking up at dawn, but all the others meet each other in their own houses spending the evening together, sharing homemade food, singing local songs, or meeting at a local pub or venue.
In Rome, despite its beauty, history and splendorous architecture, people do not know each other, is always rushing, is always using their cars, don’t enjoy walks or staying with the family. Everything becomes almost mechanic and very much based on a fixed routine.
Of course, when speaking about opportunities and leisure there are countless options, however, when coming down to affectivity or relationships, it is almost non-existent.
If I would have to choose, I would live in a village, in my village.