“The city boy”. I am an Italian guy born in Napoli, already in my middle-late twenty. Since I was born I always appreciated nature and in particular the ocean (Napoli is on the Mediterranean sea). I have to be honest, in the beginning, my relationship with nature wasn’t the best. I was young of course, I did not know a lot, and that huge, uncontrolled space just scared me. Moreover, as I was born in the middle of the third biggest city in Italy, I did not have a lot of opportunities to explore the territory around me.
Fortunately, I grew, and my unstoppable curiosity to explore this world led me to understand the nature around me. In Italy, I understood that the nature is really beautiful, but that there was still a lot that I needed to learn about it.
The next step was having a beautiful experience of more than one year in Australia. For me, moving from a city where the most dangerous animal could be a wasp or a rat, to the home of several world’s deadliest animals was a big step.
I survived! One of the lessons that Australia gave me is that the Earth is our mother, and instead of being afraid we have to learn how to respect her.
Right now I live in Utrecht and instead of enjoying the comfort of the city, I miss the times when if I had my windows open for too long, and a spider with the size of my hand would come visit in my room.
The way of joking of my friends calling me “the city boy” is not valid anymore, but I still allow them to say it to do not forget my origins.
I am not perfect: I am not vegan, neither vegetarian and currently I choose the comfort of flights way too much, but I still want to learn to decrease my impact. I want to take small actions everyday to have a large scale impact and make a difference. 🙂
I think every child is born with curiosity. Discovering the world around them, babies explore new materials, new food and new toys and when they’re older they question the results they have found. Somehow I think I was lucky to never lose that curiosity for the world around me, especially not the beauty of our surrounding nature.
When I realised we are going in the wrong direction with our planet, I decided to study Environmental Sciences, because I wanted to learn how to fix all the issues. Unfortunately, I found out it is not that simple and that I can not be the hero to combat all problems. Climate change can’t be stopped by snapping your fingers, it is extremely complicated. Eventually, I finished my degree as a pessimist but feeling stronger than ever to do ‘something’.
During the past years I tried to do my part – I am a vegan, take the bike and public transport as much as I can and I avoid using plastic – but I felt for a long time that I could not be satisfied unless I would live in a shack in the wild, barely using any resources.
When I started to travel our planet, seeing all of its beauty, I regained my positivity. With this project, I want to find out what else I can do to make a change, what we all together can do. I know we cannot undo all damage done, but I believe it’s not too late to try and preserve all that’s left. I want that every child born today has the chance to experience the magic of our planet with their own eyes, being able to develop that curiosity, fight with us to make this planet a better place, living in peace and harmony with all other creatures, and finding a balance.
Next to this project I am also a student at Wageningen University in the Netherlands, where I take a master in Marine Ecology. I have an amazing fascination for underwater life, and I would love to contribute to solutions for sustainable management of these incredible ecosystems. In the meanwhile, I can share interesting facts that I learn at university in our project. 🙂