Against All Odds, Basilicata Turns the Page Toward a Flourishing Future

Nov 15, 2019 699

As a kid, I knew nothing about Basilicata or that it was a Region of Italy. I only recognized the name as being the family dialect. The family often spoke of “Rionero,” their hometown, one small village of Basilicata, north of Potenza. They talked, also, of Monticchio, which I gather was an alpine park area with a natural lake. Not sure how they ever got there; no one had wheels, neanche un ciucio,” not even a donkey.

Basilicata, also known by its Roman name, Lucania, was one of the smaller and poorer of Italy’s 20 regions. It has two provinces, Potenza and Matera, and a multitude of small, ancient villages. Geographically, it is Italy’s “in-step” stretching from the majestic mountains in the north, to beautiful and remote beaches in the southern border along the Ionian Sea.

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