Ho 35 anni e viaggio da sola da quando ne ho 19.

Per “Viaggio” non intendo l’escursione della domenica o le due settimane nel villaggio turistico. Intendo vivere e lavorare in ogni continente, spostandosi liberamente da un capo all’altro. Due anni fa, stufa di adattarmi alle situazioni che il mondo mi proponeva -e una miriade di lavori assurdi, come fare la massaggiatrice di teste di giocatori di poker durante i tornei- decisi che era arrivato il momento di prendere in mano le redini della mia vita e dedicarmi esclusivamente a quello che amo fare: viaggiare, scrivere, fotografare e sognare. Come? Creando un progetto che coinvolgesse tutte le mie passioni.

Torno così in Italia con l’idea di farmela tutta a piedi, dalla Sicilia al Piemonte, da dove ero venuta via 16 anni prima, raccontando il mio viaggio sul mio blog (che poi sarebbe diventato un libro di successo, Walkaboutitalia), fotografando e raccogliendo i sogni di chi avrei incontrato sul mio cammino. Avevo finalmente ritrovato i miei desideri e mi piaceva l’idea di solleticare la fantasia di chi avrei avuto il piacere di incontrare collezionando i loro. C’era un unico problema: non avevo un euro. Ma i sogni non hanno prezzo e decisi di partire lo stesso, affidandomi alla provvidenza.

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In sette mesi di viaggio e 2910 km a piedi sono stata obbligata a dormire sotto alle stelle una sola volta perché c’è sempre stato qualcuno che mi ha offerto un giaciglio e non ho mai sofferto la fame. Ho ricevuto qualche avance, certo -incontrando centinaia di persone al mese può capitare- ma non sono stata vittima di nessuna forma di violenza. Ho conosciuto tantissime anime amorevoli con le quali sono tutt’ora in contatto, ho scoperto l’Italia meravigliosa che i mass media nascondono sistematicamente, ho ritrovato me stessa, mi sono data tante risposte, ma soprattutto ho trovato tantissime nuove domande e ragioni per andare avanti. Sono tornata a casa con il portafogli sempre vuoto ma con una valigia piena di sogni e reduce dell’esperienza più bella che abbia mai vissuto.

E tornare a casa  soddisfatti e vivi succede a viaggiatori quotidianamente in ogni parte del mondo, essere stuprati e uccisi è una triste eccezione.

Ma…

“N’altra che non cià n’cazzo da fa’!”

“E noi dovremmo credere a certe cazzate? avrà viaggiato molto anche di notte e anche con la fantasia…!!!”

“Sarà dimagrita ?”

“Ma non lavora? Se viaggia senza soldi venderà il suo corpo per campare.”

“Se farà la fine di Pippa Bacca è perché se l’è cercata.”

Sono solo alcuni dei commenti che mi sono ritrovata incredula a leggere sulle varie pagine in cui si parlava della mia curiosa avventura. Certo non ci sono stati solo commenti negativi, ma direi approssimativamente un buon 50 per cento.

Ora, che non tutti condividano le mie scelte di vita è assolutamente plausibile, non mi stupisce ne infastidisce ma il fatto che non vengano rispettate e sminuite in quanto “diverse” è medioevale.

Il problema è che certe scelte di vita diventano ancor più “diverse”, ancor più controcorrente, ancor più provocatorie se fatte da una ragazza in quanto sovvertono l’immagine mentale della donna che la società ci impone fin da piccoli. E questa immagine mentale non è solo nel cervello maschile, ma anche nel nostro e non è facile disintossicarsi. Tanti dei crudeli commenti a cui ho fatto riferimento sono stati scritti proprio da altre donne.

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Nella lettera scritta dalla prospettiva delle vittime – le due ragazze argentine Marina e Luz – che negli ultimi giorni sta facendo il giro del web, Guadalupe Acosta dice: “Se nei titoli ci fosse stato scritto “due giovani uomini viaggiatori uccisi” la reazione sarebbe stata di condoglianze e richiesta di una pena pari alla gravità dell’assassinio.”

Probabile ma nessuno avrebbe mai scritto “due giovani uomini viaggiatori uccisi”. Avrebbero scritto semplicemente “due giovani viaggiatori uccisi”, che siano uomini è sottinteso, nel caso siano donne è necessario specificare.  Il problema è proprio questo,  viviamo ancora in una società dove se si tratta di donne, neri, disabili o gay il sostantivo diventa aggettivo. Calcio, rugby, tennis, qualsiasi tipo di sport è inteso al maschile a meno ché non sia specificato il contrario e quella piccola, apparentemente insignificante, precisazione crea un piedistallo di separazione. Il piedistallo dove l’uomo bianco ed etero si autoproclama perenne vincitore. Ma forse invece che accanirci per quel primo posto insignificante basterebbe iniziare a parlare con un altro gergo. Io non sono una donna che viaggia sola, semplicemente viaggio da sola e soprattutto non viaggio da sola in due.

Nel post diventato virale riguardo all’omicidio delle  viaggiatrici argentine l’ashtag è #viajosola ma le ragazze uccise erano DUE. Chissà, forse potevano essere anche in dieci, in cento o in mille ma senza la presenza di un uomo sarebbero sempre state sole. Come se una presenza maschile fosse necessaria a validare la nostra esistenza. E se invece fossimo in milioni, non dico a viaggiare “da sole”, ma a dimenticarci le regole di un patetico gioco creato dall’uomo per vincere e troppo spesso perpetuato da noi stesse per giustificare una sconfitta? La sconfitta di ogni donna che ha deciso di partecipare a uno stupido gioco a perdere pensando “Ma cosa ci faceva/no in giro da sole/a?”


I’m 35 and being traveling alone since I was 19. As “traveling” I don’t mean the sunday’s excursion or the two weeks in the tourist village. I mean to live and work in every continent, moving freely from on side of the world to the other. Two years ago, I got tired of adapting to the situations the world kept offering me -I had a billion absurd jobs … My last, for example, was to be a professional masseuse of poker players heads during tournaments- so I decided it was time to take over the reins of my life and devote myself exclusively to what I love doing: traveling, writing, photographing and dreaming. How? Creating a project that involved all my passions. I went back to Italy, my home country, with the idea to walk rom Sicily to Piedmont, writing about my journey on my blog (which later became a book, Walkaboutitalia, Edizioni dei cammini, 2015), photographing and collecting the dreams of those I met on my path. I had finally found myself and I liked the idea to tickle the aspirations of those who I had the pleasure to meet on the way. There was only one problem. I did not have any money … But dreams are priceless, and I decided to leave anyway trusting to providence.

 In seven months of travel and 2910 km on foot I have been forced to sleep under the stars only once because there was always someone who offered me a bed and I never went hungry. A few people courted me, of course, meeting hundreds of people per month, it can happen, but I was never a victim of any form of violence. I met many loving people with whom I’m still in contact, discovered the deep and restless Italy that the media systematically try to hide,  found many answers, but mostly importantly I found a lot of new questions and good reasons to keep going. Finally I made it home and owned a suitcase full of dreams and the most beautiful experience I’ve ever lived.

This happens to travellers all over the world on a daily basis and to make it back home happy and alive is the norm. Getting raped and killed is a very unlucky exception. However…

“Oh… Another one that’s got nothing to do with her life.”

“Are we meant to believe this shit? She must have traveled a lot, even at night and even with imagination … !!!”

“Did she, at least, lose weight?”

“Does she have a job? If traveling without money she must have been selling her body to survive.”

“If she’s gonna end up like Pippa Bacca she deserves it.”

These are just some of the comments I found on articles that spoke about my curious adventure. Surely there have been positive comments as well, I would say approximately 50-50 .

Now,  I understand that not everyone  shares my life choices, it does not surprise me, but the fact that they are not respected and branded as “crazy” is medieval.

The problem is that certain lifestyle choices become even more “crazy” if lived by a woman as they subvert the mental image of women that society imposes on us from an early age. And this mental image is not only in the male brain, but also in ours and it’s not easy to detox from it. Many of the cruel comments to which I have referred were written precisely by other women.

In the letter written from the perspective of the victims that’s going viral these days on the web Guadalupe Acosta says:

“if the headline would have said “two young male travelers were killed” people would be expressing their condolences and with their false and hypocritical double standard speech would demand higher penalty for murderers.”

She’s probably right but no one would ever written “two young male travelers were killed.” They would have simply written “two young travelers killed,” it’s implied that they are men, if they are women is becomes necessary to specify. The problem lies there. We still live in a society where when it comes to women, blacks, disable or gays the noun becomes the adjective. Football, rugby, tennis, any kind of sport refers to men unless otherwise stated, and that small, seemingly insignificant, clarification creates a separation pedestal. The pedestal where the white and hetero man proclaims himself a perennial winner. But maybe instead  of craving for that insignificant first place it would be enough to start talking another lingo. I’m not a woman traveling alone, I simply travel alone and especially I don’t travel alone if it’s two of us, whatever the sex.

What’s really astonishing here is that the ashtag in the post about the murder of the Argentinian  travelers is #viajosola (#Itravelalone) but the girls killed were TWO. Perhaps they could have been ten, a hundred or a thousand but without the presence of a man they would have always be considered alone, as if a male presence is always necessary to validate our existence. But what if we were in the millions, not to travel “alone”, but to forget the rules of a pathetic game created by man to win and too often perpetuated by women in order to justify a defeat? The defeat of every woman who has decided to participate and consciously lose by thinking “But what were they doing… traveling alone?”

I’m 35 and being traveling alone since I was 19. As “traveling” I don’t mean the sunday’s excursion or the two weeks in the tourist village. I mean to live and work in every continent, moving freely from on side of the world to the other. Two years ago, I got tired of adapting to the situations the world kept offering me -I had a billion absurd jobs … My last, for example, was to be a professional masseuse of poker players heads during tournaments- so I decided it was time to take over the reins of my life and devote myself exclusively to what I love doing: traveling, writing, photographing and dreaming. How? Creating a project that involved all my passions. I went back to Italy, my home country, with the idea to walk rom Sicily to Piedmont, writing about my journey on my blog (which later became a book, Walkaboutitalia, Edizioni dei cammini, 2015), photographing and collecting the dreams of those I met on my path. I had finally found myself and I liked the idea to tickle the aspirations of those who I had the pleasure to meet on the way. There was only one problem. I did not have any money … But dreams are priceless, and I decided to leave anyway trusting to providence.

 In seven months of travel and 2910 km on foot I have been forced to sleep under the stars only once because there was always someone who offered me a bed and I never went hungry. A few people courted me, of course, meeting hundreds of people per month, it can happen, but I was never a victim of any form of violence. I met many loving people with whom I’m still in contact, discovered the deep and restless Italy that the media systematically try to hide,  found many answers, but mostly importantly I found a lot of new questions and good reasons to keep going. Finally I made it home and owned a suitcase full of dreams and the most beautiful experience I’ve ever lived.

This happens to travellers all over the world on a daily basis and to make it back home happy and alive is the norm. Getting raped and killed is a very unlucky exception. However…

“Oh… Another one that’s got nothing to do with her life.”

“Are we meant to believe this shit? She must have traveled a lot, even at night and even with imagination … !!!”

“Did she, at least, lose weight?”

“Does she have a job? If traveling without money she must have been selling her body to survive.”

“If she’s gonna end up like Pippa Bacca she deserves it.”

These are just some of the comments I found on articles that spoke about my curious adventure. Surely there have been positive comments as well, I would say approximately 50-50 .

Now,  I understand that not everyone  shares my life choices, it does not surprise me, but the fact that they are not respected and branded as “crazy” is medieval.

The problem is that certain lifestyle choices become even more “crazy” if lived by a woman as they subvert the mental image of women that society imposes on us from an early age. And this mental image is not only in the male brain, but also in ours and it’s not easy to detox from it. Many of the cruel comments to which I have referred were written precisely by other women.

In the letter written from the perspective of the victims that’s going viral these days on the web Guadalupe Acosta says:

“if the headline would have said “two young male travelers were killed” people would be expressing their condolences and with their false and hypocritical double standard speech would demand higher penalty for murderers.”

She’s probably right but no one would ever written “two young male travelers were killed.” They would have simply written “two young travelers killed,” it’s implied that they are men, if they are women is becomes necessary to specify. The problem lies there. We still live in a society where when it comes to women, blacks, disable or gays the noun becomes the adjective. Football, rugby, tennis, any kind of sport refers to men unless otherwise stated, and that small, seemingly insignificant, clarification creates a separation pedestal. The pedestal where the white and hetero man proclaims himself a perennial winner. But maybe instead  of craving for that insignificant first place it would be enough to start talking another lingo. I’m not a woman traveling alone, I simply travel alone and especially I don’t travel alone if it’s two of us, whatever the sex.

What’s really astonishing here is that the ashtag in the post about the murder of the Argentinian  travelers is #viajosola (#Itravelalone) but the girls killed were TWO. Perhaps they could have been ten, a hundred or a thousand but without the presence of a man they would have always be considered alone, as if a male presence is always necessary to validate our existence. But what if we were in the millions, not to travel “alone”, but to forget the rules of a pathetic game created by man to win and too often perpetuated by women in order to justify a defeat? The defeat of every woman who has decided to participate and consciously lose by thinking “But what were they doing… traveling alone?”