Climbing is a way of life. I was not aware of this before setting foot in the climbing wall in Sesto Calende (Varese). November 2009: new in town, I only wanted to get to know some people, but I had never climbed before…
The very first person I meet is Giacomo “Jacky”, a warm smile and a big heart. Showing me some circuits, pseudo communist music playing in the background. Then in walks Marco and reggae starts. A type of music I hardly knew but grew to be fond of.
Little by little I got to know all the guys and the (then) few girls: Luca, Gianluca, Fabio, Max, la Dona, Matteo, Stefania, Sara, Simone, Piero, Francesco, Sem and then Matias, Marco B, Gio, Gigi, Hernan, Zif, Alfio, Lallo, Alby, Gloria, Marinella, Michela, Paolo, Giuseppe… far too many to name them all!!
Six months on, I go out climbing and touch the rock for the first time. Russo, Switzerland and then historic Nibbio in the Valsassina, where Cassin used to train. Hats off to the guys for their patience, the shared laughs and their company.
It took me some time, in fact a long time to feel part of the group but, as I’ve said, climbing is a way of life and, in life, you never stop learning.
The wall sees people from various countries and all walks of life. A true melting pot which I cherish again and again.