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Dream Big and Stand Tall


It took me a couple of days to metabolize the article about my life that was published by Il Corriere della Sera (you can read it here: Italian version, English version, Chinese version).

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When on Friday, the 15th of February 2019, I opened the online version of the newspaper and I saw the title, I felt stunned. This is the newspaper I have read every day, in the last 15 years. Seeing my picture, my life and its details there for the public to read was like a shock.


The article was written by Elvira Serra and is based on a long interview she had with me last week. An interview that covered many aspects of my life (family, love, education, travels, music, literature, hobbies). The journalist had to extract from my story a few lines that would communicate a clear message to the reader: nothing is impossible [1].

In these years, in which the economic crisis has hit a large part of the Italian population, in my land, Sardinia, many people have lost hope. The unemployment rate plagued the air, while the faith in the future broke the ground. This had a negative impact throughout the society. People felt abandoned. Institutions were unable to provide answers to basic needs and requests.

With the article about my story, Elvira meant to say that – despite the difficult moment – we can still do much. We can still fly over our limits and change our destiny.

And her message was well received. Within a few hours from the article publication, my email and my social networks crawled with hundreds of notifications. Family members, friends all over the world and an unexpected number of strangers were reading the news and expressing their support.


I started replying their messages immediately. Within minutes, my story became their story and their story became mine: we were all sparkling dots in a summer-night sky. Hundreds of people were telling me about their lives, about how they left home and risked everything for career paths that finally ended in enormous satisfactions. Students, teachers, researchers, journalists, restaurateurs, doctors, managers. Lives marked by sacrifices and dreams. Big dreams.


But big dreams can also cause disillusion. Some of the people who wrote me described painful experiences. They are not alone. There is no success without a large number of failures. What matters is to let us stand tall and keep staying hungry.

Dreams will eventually come true.


A minor clarification: I do not earn as much money as someone has understood. I probably do not even earn a third of it. But what matters the most is that my income was never meant to be the take away from the article.

[1] Elvira’s article was inspired by a previous article about my strange career path written by Cinzia Simbula for l’Unione Sarda, a newspaper distributed in Sardinia. You can read it here (only in Italian).