Genzano di Lucania 20
The fountain called "la Cavallina" This is where horses and other animals would drink when they were in town
The same fountain with a bit more background
Welcome to my hub, Genzano di Lucania
Welcome to our hub, Genzano di lucania
I was born and grown in Genzano di Lucania and you are invited to read my memories of my home town;
So, let me welcome again all those who would like to read these articles of my native town, which is only a normal small town in Italy Southern regions, perhaps some readers that have come from this same town would like to read them just to remember the town that they came from, others would read them just because it is a new article and are curious of its content, whatever is their interest, let us hope that it is interesting enough for them to read it.
Now, allow me to explain the situation to our readers here, since I am an Italian born and grew in this town of Genzano di Lucania, I suppose that most of my town people would have liked to see this article written in Italian, since they are the people that would like to know about this town; but that has not been possible to do for a couple of reasons, first of all because our computer programs are in English and therefore it would be hard to write in another language other than English, the other reason is that the English language has a very large audience and also there are a lot of migrated Italians that speak English now; you see, this article is aimed mainly to the migrated Italians that are interested in their town of origin; so, I am saying sorry to our Italian friends, I am sorry that my hub pages are written in English, but it is easier for me as I happen to be in Australia, however I am also writing a blog in blogger about Genzano and this is the link; http://genzanoit.blogspot.com, you can visit it and there is a lot more about this Genzano town written in that blog, there are also a few pages written in Italian, in the page section and links that would help see many other things about this town and its writes as well.
Now let me introduce myself again in this article, so that my countrymen could know who I am, my name is, Francesco Menchise and I was born and lived in Genzano di Lucania when I was young, So I would like to salute all those who remember me, since I remember most of you even today; greetings and all the best to you all my friends. I have to say that while I am writing this article I feel that I miss something and I wish I could see you all once again even if it is for a short while, you see even today after a very long time I feel somehow homesick, well not really homesick, but I would like to be back there once again.
We hope that in this article we would be able to talk about all the interesting things that we know about Genzano di Lucania and for those that don't know where Genzano di Lucania is, you will find a Google map here under to help you find it; here-under is also my welcome text and a few links about Genzano and all you have to do is click on these links to see their content; and other things. We wish you that our areticle about Genzano brings to you joy and understanding and remembrance of Genzano di Lucania that is if you happen to come from this town and if you are not from this town just enjoy your reading anyhow and perhaps think about your town of origin.
Here are some interesting links:
Here under is another Video of a concert held near this town fountain called La Cavallina.
And again a feast of this Madonna showing it in the old town
Dear readers I apologise for repeating many things again, but you see there are a few things that come up at different times and we are forced to start all over again.
Let me welcome you again to read about my native town, yes Genzano di Lucania, is my native town, because this is the town where I was born. So I hope that in this article I will be able to describe to you the best way possible my home town where I was born and where I lived when I was young, so that you would understand me better when I am talking about my home town, my life story and those events that were taking place in this town when I was young. So I hope that I would be able to find some photos of my town on the Internet to show you as much as I can.
Let me explain, just to make it easy to see what this article is all about hereunder are some links, please point to the link and then click on the links as prompted by your computer.
Genzano di Lucania, Youtube link, I say it is an excellent video to start with.
For more information click on the links below:
Let us hope that these links work for our readers, anyhow there are other things that we want to show you here-under starting with Genzano’s soccer field.
As we all know, in Italy one of the main sports that everybody follows is what we call here soccer, so most town have their soccer field, also Genzano di Lucania has its own soccer field, which the inhabitant would be proud to show you; of course there are lot of other things to see in Genzano, but let us start to show you some photos; as we all know Italian people love soccer, so, Genzano as far as I remember has had a soccer team, and today they have a proper soccer field as well. We need to say here that when I was a teenager there was not a real soccer field yet, anyone that was interested in soccer had to wait after the wheat harvest to get the soccer field going for that season. After the wheat harvest in a field at the outskirt of the town they would flatten the ground level enough to play for that season. It was okay then just the same, because in Southern Italy in summer is usually very dry, so the soccer matches were on just the same, but there were times when a thunder storm would come and ruin the sporting event. I remember this because it happened to me when I was very young, we all had to run and find shelter wherever we could at the nearest houses in town, we got wet, but it was fun.
Now, in this section let me show you an aerial photos of the oldest part of Genzano town: This first photo here shows you the oldest part of Genzano, which is very ancient and there are a few stories how this town was started, so we may have a couple of stories to tell how it came about; So, let me say this, in my later articles (hubs) there will be a story or two written how this town was started from people living nearby perhaps in caves or other make shift dwellings; today there are a few theories that have been written recently from and one of these writers in this link, Scrittori e poeti, this link is for those that can read Italian as they are written in Italian, if the link works click on the writer Ettore Lorito he has written a good and perhaps the real story about Genzano origin and why this town was called Genzano, so my own explanation here-under may or may not be correct, however it is just my point of view.
Anyhow one has to look at the history of the region to understand the way these old towns were built in the past, and from there just imagine the possibilities and write about them if you think you might be close to the truth. Now let me show you an aerial photos of the oldest part of Genzano town: This first photo here shows you the oldest part of Genzano, which is very ancient and there are a few stories how this town was started, so we may have a couple of stories to tell how it came about; So, let me say this, in my later hubs there will be a story or two written how this town was started from people living nearby perhaps in caves or other make shift dwellings, which is from what I know about the region and imagine that it could have happened.
Anyhow we were saying that one has to look at the history of the region to understand the way that these old towns were built in the past. See this link shown here; The town I came from, there are a few things and a few photos showing what we mean.
Perhaps it would have been better if I had done this in the beginning of this article, but then I thought that I was talking about the town and not about myself, so I have left this for later; therefore, now let me introduce myself who I am: My real name is Francesco Menchise born and grown in Genzano di Lucania and I migrated to Australia a very long time ago, but I have never forgotten my original home town of Genzano, therefore now as you can see I am writing my memories of my life and therefore also my home town. Now, since I am writing this article to talk about the town where I came from, I would appreciate very much if any of my countrymen (paesani Genzanesi) that come across this article would like to leave a comment, and also anyone with a family name Menchise I would appreciate if they leave a comment, since there are reasons to believe that all people in the world with their family name Menchise are originally from the town of Genzano di Lucania; so, come on let us hear from you all, I will appreciate it very much. I am sure that some of you who left Genzano old enough would remember things that happen in Genzano like this feast, (festa della Madonna) See photos.
In my life memories I will be writing several things about Genzano whenever the occasion arises, I would also be writing all those hear say and stories that went around town while I lived in Genzano when I was young, perhaps what I am going to say here might very well surprise even a modern Genzanese person since thing have changed a lot in the last 50 years or so, therefore don’t be surprised if you learn something from me about my original home town of Genzano di Lucania in these articles.
We who migrated from our native home towns, we will always feel home sick sometimes, so we remember all those things that we have left behind, therefore In Genzano there are many good things including pretty girls, just look at this pretty face here:
As I have said above, I know I had to leave all those things behind when I migrated to Australia, but anyhow I still keep them in my mind as you can see.
Now that I have talked to you about my native town of Genzano, let me tell you a bit more about myself and what I am going to write in Hub Pages, you see I have already published a few articles, where I am writing about my memories and other things as well; you are all invited to check them out and here are the links, please click on the links below to view and read our (articles) hubs:
An old man story, Midway introduction life story, Our life observations, Wine making the old ways, Genzano Greek Chasm chapter, My farm life experience, 2, Genzano Greek chasm and Madonna story, My first farm life experience
Genzano Cavallina twilight, Genzano is the town I came from, Genzano di Lucania history, Strage in Genzano di Lucania
These are some of the articles that I have written and published in this domain called Hub Pages, but there is more that you will find if you continue to follow my writings.
My dearer readers and Genzanesi folks I have to say that while I was looking for Genzano di Lucania on the Internet, I have found on the Internet also Genzano di Roma, which is a larger town and seems to be important in art, so allow me to introduce you to this artistic town including what I found on You tube videos, here is a link to see and enjoy ballet with the several links that are attached to it.
Anyhow I believe that I have said enough in this article, so see you in our next article, Genzano the Lucania history.
The white rabbit is one if the ghosts of this fountain
The old town of Genzano was built on a high piece of land between two chasms, as it can be seen from this photo
Welcome to my hub of, personal twilight stories, at Genzano fountain Cavallina
Wherever you go in the world where there are ancient buildings, old folks always seem to come up with ghostly stories of this place or that place being haunted, because some strange things seem to happen. My native town of Genzano has also these ghostly stories, because old people say that these things exist. So let us see if there are reasons to believe them, so, let me tell you a story that has happened to me and to some my friends and other things that seem strange enough to believe that these things really exist, here is my story and what really happened.
My mother grandma and other elders of the town of Genzano kept telling us not to go alone to this fountain Cavallina when it was dark, but as we all know young people sometimes do not believe their elders and want to find out for themselves and so did I and my friends one night.
But before I tell you this ghostly story, let me tell you why I would like to tell you that, dear readers in my last post I have been talking about the town where I came from and its ancient fountain called Cavallina, You see, because I was talking about Genzano town and this fountain called Cavallina, I have remembered a particular ghostly event and also a dream that I had about this fountain when I was young, there are also other creepy happenings and ghostly stories about this fountain; I am saying this because I would like to tell you some stories that I personally was involved about this fountain, not only at the time when I was young but also later on in my life. So I hope you would like to hear them; I know that somehow they might be going to feel strange to some of you, but this was my personal experience, so let me tell you.
As I have said above, when I was young my mother grandma and other elders of the town kept telling us not to go alone to this fountain Cavallina when it was dark, because some people had seen ghostly sights; but if you had to go there not to go alone and go as early as possible after dusk, so even when we were coming back from the fields from that side of town, and we had to go past this fountain we had to be careful as soon as it was dark, if you had to water your horse or donkey or whatever animals you had to water them during the day or early before dusk. I have to say that there were also some other unspeakable activities that went on near this fountain before dusk, but about these activities of dumping human excrement I am doing to tell you later on in another article, because now we are talking about ghostly things at this fountain at night.
To cut a long story short I am going to tell you what happened to me and some of my friends. As you all know young men in their later teen are not easily scared and they start thinking that these ghostly stories are not true at all, so, I and a few friends of mine were going to pay a visit to this fountain Cavallina at night; so, one late evening we went to see this fountain Cavallina and from above as we approached the fountain there was nobody to be seen, so, we said to each other, you see there is nobody here and there are no ghosts around, we really thought that we were going to see something unusual at this fountain, so we were disappointed saying to each other there are no ghosts to be seen.
So we kept going to the fountain when we saw a white rabbit in a corner and soon we gave chase as we wanted to grab this rabbit, not just for fun, but because we wanted to eat the rabbit as meat was expensive those days. There were four of us giving chase to this white rabbit, but the rabbit kept escaping us, but we kept running after it and the rabbit was taking us very close to a ravine which had a drop of over ten meter and any one that would fall down there would instantly end up dead.
Anyhow suddenly one of us said; what rabbit that is not a rabbit? Suddenly we realised that we were not chasing a rabbit at all, but we were chasing a ghost or an evil spirit that was trying to take us over the ravine to kill us if we had followed it. It is said that ghost or evil spirits lose their full power when people realise that they are a supernatural apparition, so, in this case we were lucky when we realised that what we were chasing was not a rabbit at all, it was an evil spirit; well at least this is what we were made to believe then from the elders, when we told our story.
What I have written above was real life happening, but what I am going to tell you next is only a dream, but you can say that this dream that I am going to tell you belongs also to the twilight zone, just like my life story about chasing the white rabbit belongs to the twilight zone.
What I have written above was real life happening, but what I am going to tell you next is only a dream, but you can say that this dream that I am going to tell you belongs to the twilight zone also, just like my story about chasing the white rabbit belongs to the twilight zone.
So, let me tell you my dream, because what I dreamed about is very strange; you see I was dreaming about an old person who wanted to teach me something at this fountain Cavallina. I know that now you are saying that this is a stupid reason just to tell you a dream and dreams are only dreams and they cannot be classified as being real, but before you judge me and my dream just read what I have to say, because it could be interesting especially if you believe that dreams sometimes have some useful meanings, or they can come from the afterlife world.
To understand this dream better I need to explain that this old person might have been the spirit my great, great, great grandma who lived not far from this fountain, and who had used this fountain during all her life, perhaps she had lived through one of this contagious disease that require washing everything properly to avoid contamination and this is what she wanted to teach me.
When I dreamed this dream I was in Australia in my late forties, but in my dream I was only a boy about ten or eleven years old, (I suppose that this difference in age in the dream wanted to show me that the old lady was very ancient spirit compared to me), so, this very old lady was standing beside me at this fountain Cavallina, strange as it may seem I had taken some dishes and other eating utensil from the old house where my grandma lived to wash at the fountain; the old lady was telling me to wash everything under the first spout of the fountain and keep everything in the first bay near this first spout, so that they would not be contaminated, and so I did; but as you know dreams sometime are very strange and suddenly I found that some of my dishes were in the second bay of the fountain, so I started to worry about it, but the old lady said to me not to worry about it, I was protesting to her saying that you said that the other bays are contaminated, and she said don’t worry just for this time and you will soon know why, when you wake up.
Then I woke up and realised that it was only a dream, so I understood the old lady that I did not have to worry about the dishes in the second bay of the fountain, because it was only a dream and the dishes even though had been contaminated I was not going to use them anyhow, just because they were only in my dreams, and they were thousands of miles away, in another era and in another place. I believe that the old lady was one of my forbear who popped up in my dreams to teach me a lesson about food contamination or something like that, and she did.
Since we have been talking in our last two hubs about the town of Genzano di Lucania, which is indeed the town that I have come from originally, when I came to Australia. I have been thinking that perhaps it would be the right thing to do; if in my next hub I will be talking more about, the town which I have come from. See you there.
Where we come from
Genzano is the town I came from
This is the corso part of the modern part of Genzano di Lucania.
We all wonder sometimes where we come from and most of us would like to know why and what is the reason for being here on earth; some of us have their own beliefs or just go along with other people beliefs; but when you are not living in your native town anymore, because you have left town and gone to live somewhere else to earn a living, then the most likely question that people would always ask would be; where you come from?
While we try to answer their question the best way we can we start thinking about our own fife journey and indeed about the town that we have came from; in my case I would answer I have come from Genzano di Lucania; so, Genzano is the town I came from. Then we may start thinking that we might be born with our own destiny, since we see that there were certain reasons why we left our native town, at least some of us might believe we do have a destiny, just because we would like to believe that it is so. You see for this reason I believe that somehow my own destiny has played a part and has taken me away from my native town. Some people may say that since you left your town for your own personal reasons, you would forget about your native town altogether, and you would not say a word about it since this town could not give you what you wanted when you were young, so you left your native town.
Some people might think that you don’t like your native town, but it is not like that at all, because wherever you are born and grow up it is going to be your native town for the rest of your life. You see every one of us is proud of its native town or country, if we were not proud of our heritage we would be unworthy of ourselves, so, I hope that you my dear readers understand why sometimes I would like to talk about Genzano my native home town. After all Genzano di Lucania is really a good town that one could be proud of to come from, so let us talk about Genzano di Lucania.
Genzano is the town I came from
Dear readers, allow me to describe to you the town where I was born, lived when I was young and later on I had to leave, so that I could come to Australia: I would like to talk about this town so that you could understand the ways that we used to live in this town, at the time when I was young; after all we want also to compare the ways of living of those time with today’s ways of living: we would like to do that in the hope that you may perceive and feel my life story in the same way and depth as I have perceived and felt it, while I was living my young life at that place and at that particular time. As I was saying the town that I am talking about here is the town where I was born and lived my youth before I came to Australia, its name is Genzano di Lucania.
Therefore let me go back to the time when I was young, so that I could describe to you the town and their costumes, so that, you may be able to understand the ways that these people have lived their lives for centuries; And therefore the reason why they were living the way they were living at the time when I was young. Now because I was born there I was caught in their own ways of living, which left a lot to be desired for, if one compares it to the ways that we live our lives in Australia nowadays, and also the rest of the western world.
The town where I came from happens to be situated in Southern Italy; its name is ‘Genzano’ but its full name is ‘Genzano Di Lucania’, only to distinguish it from ‘Genzano di Roma’. But when we talk about this town, we just talk about Genzano, and this causes a curious fact of life here in Australia, because to most people living in Australia the name of ‘Genzano’ sounds very much like ‘Cinzano’ which is a famous wine brand. So they start asking questions whether this town is the town where such a good wine originated. But unfortunately ‘Genzano’ the town which I have come from has got nothing to do with that famous wine brand. Although we had and still have some good vineyards in the town territory, and they make good wines, and here I have to add that also my family owned some vineyards at the time when I was young, from which we used to make good wines too. The wine that our family made from our vineyards was mainly for our own family use, but usually it was more than our family could use, so we would sell the extra wine locally. I will tell you more about this wine making in another hub, here is the link to check it out: Wine making the old ways
But talking about wines and wine making, it makes me think of something very unusual and scenic in this town, which people from outside town and not familiar with this sort of set up would be amazed to see.
Now, if I were to say that the people of Genzano make their wines inside cellars, which are large caves, dug in the walls of a chasm, it would certainly leave too much to your imagination, and you may be forgiven to imagine that there are cavemen too living in these caves. And indeed there were some sort of cavemen in earlier times, and some of them used to live in these caves, but they were not real cavemen, as they were just people who later on became the first inhabitants of Genzano town, but I am sure that some of them used to live in these caves in ancient times.
So now let me go back one more step in time; to those ancient times when people used to live in the caves, before they built the town of Genzano: And here my dear readers I would like to describe in general terms, if you don’t mind me telling you the ancient nature of these caves, the terrain where they stand, and perhaps take an educated guess why these caves were made there in the first place, who made them and why they have been made there.
But first let me write a bit about the old towns of southern Italy, so that the readers would have a better picture of what we are talking about here.
In the old continent of Europe as well as in Southern Italy, lots of medieval towns were built on a rugged hill, or something similar for reason of safety, as we all know that in ancient times and in the Middle Ages towns had to be built in such positions, in order to make it hard for the enemy to get into town, and easy for the inhabitants to defend the town from aggressions. Today some of these towns are a sight to see like this photo that I have come across on the Internet. This here under is one of the scenic towns of southern Italy, it is a bit similar to my home town.
Very old town Matera
And here I quote;
It seems as though everyone in this region moved into caves, which came to be known as i sassi (stones). You would think Sasso Caveoso and Sasso Barisano (which begin at Piazza V. Veneto) were just typical Italian hilltowns until you realize the "houses" are all windowless grottoes with damp walls and earthen floors, where the family's animals slept side-by-side with the humans.
Far from being uncivilized, these rock towns had intricate hydraulic systems that kept water fresh and cool year round. Eventually the caves gained façades and roofs, but the interiors remained virtually unchanged. Nearly 15,000 people were still living in them in 1952, when the government finally declared them unhealthy and outlawed their use. There are several places where you can visit a typically furnished sasso: the most indicative is probably the one at Vico Solitario 12, in Sasso Caveoso.
End Of quote:
Dear readers, we have taken the liberty of showing you another place in southern Italy, so that in a way it shows you the way that the people of this region have liver for a very long time, the reason for doing this is to show you that Genzano the town I come from has a similar story.
The old Genzano town
Here we need to say that the history of the existence of Genzano is very ancient, as there is some evidence that the town of Genzano already existed when Christianity began in the Roman times. But in this story we are talking about that very old and part of Genzano of the thirteenth century or there about that is built on a strip of land which is situated between two chasms, and these chasms are situated at the edge of a high plateau 588 meters above sea level; and the modern Genzano is a continuation of the ancient part of this town, which has kept steadily growing onto the high plateau itself up to the present days.
In the beginning, because of the nature of the terrain of the high plateau which was sandy at one end, allowed the rainwater to erode the soil easily away, forming two chasms of considerable depth; which by memory I would consider them to be 30 meter plus in depth. So Genzano that part of the ancient town was built on the remains of the edge of an old high plateau, which the rainwater’s had slowly dug and taken away the soil downstream, leaving a high strip of land which was narrowing till the chasms met. And upon this triangular and narrow piece of high land, the inhabitant of Genzano began to build their own town.
But before they built their own town, they must have been living somewhere else, and they must have overgrown the place where they were living in, and for this reason they started building their own town. Now, the only place that they could have been living in was in the caves in the chasm, which they themselves as the first and permanent inhabitants of this region had dug in the walls of the chasms.
The walls of the chasms being Tuffaceous and very compact, and sandy in nature with a few layers of sandstone at different levels, it had been possible for the first inhabitant to dig in the walls of the chasms and make a cave. And the caves although they are large they are reasonably safe from cave-ins; an average cave could be 6 or 7 meters wide, and 6 or 7 meters high at the entrance, and some twenty meters long becoming a bit smaller at the far end.
Now if you stop and think just for a moment, how hard it must have been to dig in the walls of the chasms in order to make caves, and then also to carry all the soil outside and away from the caves, even if they used to dump the soil at the bottom of the chasms, and then wait for a good torrential rain to take away the soil downstream, it would really be a mammoth of a job to dig those caves.
So here I can easily say and demonstrate that life is and always will be a struggle, as it was a struggle even then to dig those caves. And I believe that perhaps life then was much harder than nowadays. Because to hand excavate those caves must have been hard work indeed, and it must have taken them ages and millions of men’s hours, as there are lots of caves in the chasms, in fact it could be that there are one hundred caves in Genzano territory. Now because all this happened a very long time ago, nobody these days seems to know who they were the first inhabitant of the chasms, or where they came from, and how many of these caves they made in the beginning.
Who could they be?
The first inhabitant of this region might have been just a group of shepherds grazing their herds, and having found a sort of shelter in the chasm, from the cold winds or rain in winter times, they stopped there and tried to improve this natural shelter; so they started to dig these caves for themselves and for their flocks. Or they could have been people that were fleeing away from their enemies, and having found a sort of shelter in the shape of the chasms, they stopped there and made it their home. Really they could be both, and perhaps even more different groups of people.
Today one of the chasms is still called the Greek chasm from the elders of Genzano, and this means that at least sometime in the past people from Greece have lived there, or owned one of the chasms since they were living there. About the Greek people there is still another story, which is somehow different in nature from what I am trying to say at this moment, so I will have to come back to it later on, when I am ready to tell you the story of the Greek chasm and the Madonna story.
But now I would like to tell you, about when the inhabitant of the caves started to build their own houses on this strip of land at the top of the chasms; which later on would become the town of Genzano, and which was named very likely after one of their leaders, or perhaps it is indeed an ancient name, as I am going to tell you in my next hub. Therefore the time that Genzano came into existence as a town for the first time nobody knows but in my next hub that I am going to call, Genzano history, I am going to describe what I believe happened. So, see you there.
Anyhow whatever we can say about our own native town, whether we like it or not when somebody asks me, Where you come from? I will say, Genzano is the town I came from.