Friday, October 20

Banning blogs


There are two people in Positano who write blogs. Me, and Michele with his serious blog that picks up on local problems and injustices, provoking bitter comments and discussions. Lately, articles and comments on Micheles blog have become so out of control that, believe it or not the Mayor has taken legal action against the blog.

Is that allowed? What about freedom of speech? What about a blog being your own personal space where you can write what the hell you want to? And how can you take legel action against someone , if it is the comments, written by anonymous others, that have caused the problem?

Does this mean that if I start writing bad things about the town I will be summoned to the Mayors office, like a naughty school kid being sent to the headmasters? Will I be ordered to stop spilling the towns secrets, so that tourists are not put off coming here and spending money? Will I wake up one morning and find the car tyres slashed, as Michele did? If I provoke people to agree with me, or argue with me about the state of the town, will I be ordered to delete this blog?

Conformity. Not standing out from others. Fitting in, not complaining, putting up with it, accepting that this is the way it has always been, and that this is the way it shall stay.If you dare to be different here, you will pay for it. If you dress differently, you will be considered strange. If you cook differently you will be considered a bad cook. If you disagree you will get in trouble.

Michele has decided to delete his blog, which is a shame.If more people in this town had the courage to talk about what is wrong here, things might start happening. As it is, year in year out, the town stays the same, nobody does anything more than lament over a coffee in the bar.

Just think how sweeter smelling this town would be if the sewer system, in the middle of town, was covered, as it legelly should be. Instead, every summer, the fumes permeate the lower half of town, leaving nearby restaurants empty and tourists noses wrinkled in disgust.

And what about the children? What became of the whispered rumours about a decent playpark for the children to play in? The beach at Meta has a lovely array of slides and swings for the children to play on. Pos offers 2 swings and 1 plastic slide, surrounded in concrete, so that if your kid falls they will get concussion. I once asked one of the 'owners' of the beach (what a ridiculous thing to be able to own) why they didn't offer anything for children. His reply? 'When we were young there was nothing for us, so why should our children need anything?'

What about the excavation of a Roman Villa, that is going on? I know all about people that don't want their business to be affected, and what they have been doing with precious artefacts, to avoid losing money in their businesses.

Maybe these things are just not important to the locals. Maybe it is better to fit in with everyone else and worry about other things. Like who is pregnant, and who is having an affair. Who has a secret Thai bride, even though he has a wife here. Whose house got searched for drugs, who was off their face again the other night. Who has a wife and family, but picks up other men in public bathrooms.


To me it all brings to mind the 60's TV series 'The Prisoner'.

"Confined in the resort like, yet sinister town, Number 6, soon learns that no one can be trusted, and those in charge (where govermental and political affiliations are unknown) will take extreme measures to break him..."

8 comments:

  1. And what a powerful thing the weblog can be. Good to see yours still up.

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  2. Good for you Niki-being brave enough to post the truth. When I read your comments yesterday about your in laws and your cooking I wondered if they and others in Positano read your blog and what they think of it. Now I know that someone there is keeping track of what is written about their (and your) town. I admire your honesty.

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  3. Niki, I am posting from NY, got a couple of weeks vacation BUT did not want to disappear, and I am so fond of your blog that as soon as I woke up, I came to check it.
    So, Positano is what it is, as you say...sewer smell, lack of playground and especilaly lack of social life...I knwo it all, I grew up here...I have no friends...only acquainances...all my friends are foreign girls who married here...and what does that tell you??? I don't fit in here as much as you do, believe me.
    Anyway, I am more and more appalled by Carlo's family, re your cooking skills and such, I'd be honoured to try ANY of your delicacies you mentioned.
    Well, ciao from NY my dear, keep it up, you're not alone.

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  4. oh oh... i hear tires being slashed...

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  5. yea ale, i can hear the hiss from ischia. and those ladies...they're gonna...stare. at you...um, even harder!

    don't worry girl, your a foreigner, remember? you're supposed to be weird :)

    viva la verita!

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  6. It would be about time someone spoke up about the situation in Positano.I have been here almost twenty years having married a Positanese. And have a beautiful home there which is literally falling down to sea due to the negligence from the Commune. The sewer which goes under the stairs next to our house has leaked in several places for twenty years. The smell is unbearable during certain hours of the day. The Commune has promised to repair the leak and has made half hearted attempts to patch it up saying they don't have the funds. About seven years ago the current mayor who was relected last year and the town engineer came to see the situation, and while they were here they saw a rat as big as a cat run in front of them. This year they couldn't find the crack so they have canalized the leak into the gardens of those below us. We have our own sewerage waterfall now! Complete with its own nauseating smell.The terrace has a big crack in it where the land has given way due to the soaked earth and some steps have come away from the wall. I know that it will never be put right... They just don't care.
    Please continue to speak up. Positanese are just too comfortable getting rich with the tourist trade to realy do something for their town.

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  7. Eww, censors! If this blog goes away I'll have to hunt for you elsewhere because you seem the type that would go "underground". ;)

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