My grand-parents worked both on the beach. My mum’s father, Stefano, used to sell drinks and krapfen on it. My dad’s father, Giovanni, was already a beach owner at that time.
When I was born, my father Giorgio bought another beach resort with his own savings. To do that, he had to sail for 15 years on oil tankers, till I was 7 years old. I remember that he came home each 7 months and stayed with us for 20 days only. That was the most difficult period of our life.
Once, he docked in La Spezia, mother and I went to say him hallo on the oil tanker. If I close my eyes, I can still remember the acrid smell and I wondered how he could bear that kind of life. And even now, although I am a grown up woman with a daughter, I can partially understand. I say partially because I would not be able to do what my father did.
This is why I am fighting and denouncing what the government is doing to us with all my energies. My father did a lot for me. He gave me the possibility to have a good education and I specially thank him, otherwise now I would feel lost. Each important choice I made in the past depended on the fact that I knew I had a guaranteed job in my beach resort. This is also my fight, because I want what belongs to me by right, but my father deserves more, because he has been working on this beach for a lifetime and no one can seize it. My father is 70 and within 8 years he will be almost 80 years old. Draw your own conclusions… but I want to stress that he is very glad that the Italian government granted this 5 year extension. This is proof, if we needed any more, that he deeply loves his job. We should honour him and all the old beach owners as well. Some politicians should draw inspiration from them and from their stories.
Bettina Bolla is on Facebook. Click on her photo to see her profile.
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