11 December, 2009

You thought I was exaggerating about Naples

Not a day after I wrote that 50% compliance with the law in Naples is something of an accomplishment, the city outdoes itself. The latest news is that someone stole the city's Christmas Tree. In fact, they stole it the very night after it was installed in the Galleria Umberto I. That's an enormous hall situated in the center of the city.

And you thought I was kidding about Neapolitan attitudes toward the law.

I said it's the latest news, but it isn't, not really: someone has cut the thing down every year since 2005. This is Naples, after all; la malavita can't have something like a Christmas tree giving ordinary folk a bit of joy in their hearts. Especially not a tree where people have, for 26 years, been hanging Christmas wish lists that include desires like, No alla Camorra ("No more Mafia").

For this reason, the tree took on the name, L'albero dei desideri, the Tree of Wishes. At least one wish, sadly, has gone unanswered for another year.

No comments: