In that period I also “divorced” by the Italian Chef Association (F.I.C.) after a competition to select the candidates for the Italian National Team, I was not shortlisted (of course) and I had the confirmation of my many suspects that it was more a kind of “sect” than an association of professionals and who is more “bravo” in kissing asses on the left and on the right, goes very far, who is more focused on a meritocracy concept of the life and the job, like me, stays in the corner… if he’s not a gladiator…
I realized also that for many people, with some mysterious reasons, it was much easier to open a restaurant than for professionals with a proved track record of experience in the field.
I saw managers and owners involved in hospitality businesses without even the smallest clue of what they were going to do. The Sassodoro was one of those, perfect place, perfect location, very successful, bad management, so, in the end of my year contract, I got an opportunity to manage a little hotel with restaurant in the Tuscan mountains and I decided to move back “into the wild”.
The life in the mountains is cool, not only for the temperatures and I enjoyed very much my staying in Fiumalbo, also because the business of the hotel increased of 40% in two years and I felt like in a safe, so always in a good mood.
During this period, I spent my vacations moving to sea destinations and I also started to appreciate the scuba diving, improving my skills with several courses and easily this passion for the sea became like a drug for me.
A kind of illness got inside my brain and, suddenly, after years spent in kitchens, many of them even without windows, I really felt in need of oxygen and I decided to “hang my white jacket to the needle” and I totally changed my life.
I was 28, I moved back to my mother’s place and I enjoyed again the Sunday lunch with my family, Christmas, New Year’s Eve and all those things I have missed in my teen age: I was like a child in chocolate factory and I recharged my batteries.
In the meantime I have seriously improved my scuba diver skills to arrive to the Master Scuba Diver Instructor certification and I have started to work again in the hospitality field. The first destination was the island of Santo Stefano in Sardinia in a Valtur Resort. The job was hard, many responsibilities and lot of fan as well, but, overall, Sardinia is surrounded by one of the most beautiful sea in the world and there, the underwater experiences are something unforgettable.
Always with the feeling to be a “scuba pirate” in search of new adventures, in the following winter I decided to have one week holiday in Sharm el Sheikh to see one of the most relevant scuba destinations in the world and it was amazing indeed, but the real surprise was that I met a mermaid … she was lodging right next to my hotel room… so the mathematics expression was very simple to solve:
pirate + mermaid = unconditioned love.
Donna Alessandra from Sorrento is still my mermaid and we have a beautiful family with two beautiful mermaid-girls…
To be continued…