via dei Beati… and being almost home

Coming up this street in Fossa always feels like being ‘almost home’ whether returning from nearby L’Aquila or a long flight from Australia. For just around the next corner is my family’s house and while it has centuries of history, to me it also has that comforting feel like coming to stay at your grandparents’ house.

In recent years, this street was renamed via dei Beati for two saints born here, Bernardino in 1420 and Cesidio, 1873. But for me, this is also where Granny Maddalena stood not far from the church door you can see and watched her son, Annibale, then 15, walk away from her as he carried just one port to start his journey to Australia. It changed the course of our family history from then on, but his keeping a part of Fossa in his heart to one day share with us showed me that in a way it was part of us too. (For which, after resisting it a long time, I’m now very grateful!)


Filed under inspiration + history, italy

2 responses to “via dei Beati… and being almost home

  1. Augusto Di Marco

    Hi! Zoe.
    You never cease to amaze me with Fossa’s history.
    Yes,it’s true that Bisnonna Maddalena (la poiana) lived opposite the church, possible about 50-55 metres from where
    this picture was taken.
    Yes, it’s true that this street is re-named “Via DEI BEATI”. Traditional known as “VICOLO DRITTO”,where everybody
    got a story to tell. Nonno Anni walked this street one more time before his departure, I possible danced in this street
    In 1946 (aged 8) when Fr. Cesidio got Beatified to BEATO CESIDIO da FOSSA.(big festa in town).
    Fr. Cesidio was killed and burned in China in 1900, aged 27.
    BEATO BERNARDINO, dont know much about this Saint.
    Yes, it’s true that the place where you born —always remains in your heart.

    You always do a fine job,keep it up , very impressed.

    • Hi Augusto,
      Thank you for your lovely message. I have now also received your letter and the beautiful Ricordino you sent and will have a reply to you in the mail this coming week.
      It is wonderful to hear of your own memories of living in Fossa. I appreciate your sharing them with me. And I remember even in later years when I was in Fossa, people standing about chatting and sharing stories in this street – a lovely memory. In fact, sometimes it was hard not to be late for where you were going since you couldn’t not stop to hear a story but of course some things are much more important and I do very much love listening to the stories and experiences of older people. They have the best stories!
      You should receive a letter from me very soon.
      Warm wishes,
      Zoe xx

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