First of all, WELCOME / CROESO to my new blog! This is the first post, so you are lucky to be reading it ‘cos it will get lost in the tons of articles I will publish on here, ranting about how much I love Cardiff and Wales!
To start us off well, here are 3 reasons why I fell in love with Wales:
One: My Beautiful Welsh Leprechauns
If you’ve followed my year as Editor of Culture on Quench (which you probably haven’t since it’s a student magazine published in Wales lol), you may know what I think of Welsh people in University. In all honesty, I haven’t met that many – the majority of friends I have, are English or International students, and that is why I strongly believe that Welsh men and women are like little red-clothed leprechauns. You cannot find them everywhere, but when you do they are an absolute delight. From my first ever housemate Joey, whose grandma helped me discover my passion for Welsh bakery with her magnificent, homemade Welsh cakes, to my current housemate Gareth, with whom I’ve had the best laughs of my Uni life. My Cardiffian fellows helped me have the best university experience possible, their smiley and friendly faces have made even the constant rainy weather bearable, which is quite impressive!!
Two: The Nature
I come from a little village near Florence, in Italy, called Malmantile, lost in the jungle of vineyards and olive trees populating the Tuscan countryside. I grew up with my grandad picking up vegetables from our garden and my grandma cooking them up for us. As you see, I am most definitely not a city dweller. Therefore, coming to live in a city was going to be quite the shock for me. Cardiff, however, turned out to be the best choice for a countryside boy. The city is quite small and you can walk the entire city centre in less than an hour. Plus, despite being small, Cardiff is a very green city with Bute Park and Roath Park leaders of the natural landscape, the Capital is filled with little gardens and green areas to sit around and have a picnic while enjoying the rare rays of sunshine. Wales in general then has the most astonishing natural reserves I have ever been to. The North of Wales with its mountains and gorgeous views has warmed my heart and filled my brain with incredible memories. Not many people outside the United Kingdom know Wales (most of my family still think I live in London, despite having told them at least a thousand times it’s called CARDIFF!!!), however, I can assure you that once visited they will remember!
Three: The Wales Millennium Centre (yes, yes, I know, ‘here we go again’)
If you’ve spent with me at least a 10-minute conversation you will already be sick of me talking about theatre. But here is the truth – Cardiff holds one of the most important and beautiful theatres in Great Britain. All the best theatre productions touring around the UK will stop at the Millennium Centre for at least a few weeks of performances. When I first stepped into the Centre I was absolutely mind-blown by the greatness of the place. Coming from the Teatro del Maggio of Florence, which had been my base for a few years of watching gorgeously produced operas, I would have never expected to see such a glorious theatre putting on so many productions of operas, musicals and theatre shows through one single year. The Centre is constantly bringing something new to Cardiff and I consider it a leading institution to the Welsh cultural melting pot. Bringing the Welsh culture and the culture of the world together is their expertise and an inspiration to many artists, students, and more in general, the people living Cardiff to explore and have no boundaries in the face of the Power of Art.
Wales represents to me a second-birth, a place where I found a new home and where I know, no matter where my life will bring me, I will always be welcome. And even if Mrs May will personally come and kick me out of the UK after Brexit, Cardiff will always be in my heart and in my thoughts while I wish for Corbyn to kick her ass at the next general elections and let me back in!