If one thinks of Arcinazzo Romano, the Altipiani (Highlands) immediately come to mind which in the 80s were at the center of the social life of the capital Rome: in the summer everyone came here to spend days in the cool of this 'little Switzerland'.
We come here every summer for the international eventing competitions in the beautiful riding arena and we spend at least one weekend in the highland woods.
The ancient village has always gone almost into the background.
Arcinazzo Romano did not have famous feudal lords and there are no majestic palaces but many small houses that make it look like a crib. Its ancient village could be taken as a symbol of spontaneous medieval architecture.
But Arcinazzo has a very strong beating heart, like that of its young mayor Luca Marocchi.
For us in the area, Arcinazzo Romano was Giacomo Troja, one of the longest-lived Italian politicians who was the mayor of this village for years. So, in one election Arcinazzo went from the oldest mayor to the youngest in Italy.
Arcinazzo is alive and full of enterprising young people, I notice it immediately upon entering Punto a Capo: a modern style, the captivating smile of Floriana and a coffee on a terrace overlooking the Aniene Valley that I will never forget (incidentally, the name of this bar is beautiful but also that of the pizzeria near the city gate: '404 name not found').
The major Luca has already nominated his Town Ambassador, Antonio Donsanti who lives in Paris and whose story we will tell soon, but I came to learn more about the vitality of this village.
In the Town Ambassadors project of the Rome metropolitan city, we want to involve the 'ambassadors' in the promotion of the area and we need to understand each town.
If I had to summarize my first impression, I would say that Arcinazzo is young.
Not only for Luca, but for the air you breathe.
Floriana showed me three craft beers that some guys made with local products: a Blanche with einkorn wheat, an Irish Red Ale with chestnut honey and an IPA with Agostinella corn.
Not only beers, the return of young people to agriculture is unstoppable so much that the mayor has appointed Vanessa Troia city councellor for breeding and agriculture. The young Matteo Dehoratis has just been awarded as the first company born for the processing of chestnuts. But Arcinazzo is also Benedetto Callori and others who have sown monococcus spelled, it is Maria Tocca who produces excellent honey and then a dozen farmers and shepards involved in cheese production.
I feel like trying everything, but it's morning and a coffee is enough for me.
Today if I had to say the greater vitality of Arcinazzo I would say that it is the way of conceiving the relationship with history and of making alive what is dead elsewhere: I am referring to the archaeological area of the Trajan Villa at the Altipiani di Arcinazzo.
For some months now, the municipality has authorized the celebration of civil weddings inside the ruins and the news quickly spread.
For us Italians, ruins are part of everyday life and every village has something special, but for all the inhabitants of the rest of the planet these are magical places.
So, the news reached Kenya and last week Caterina and Amos came to get married at Trajan's villa together with about thirty other guests who stayed for a week in our territories and in Italy.
I leave Arcinazzo Romano with the image of life, of young people and of good things.