I come from a place (Mexico City) in which you learn to live with earthquakes (and pretty strong ones) and fortunately, after the davastating earthquake in 1985 which destroyed the city and caused thousands of victims, it seems that we have learnt to build our houses and monuments the right way so even strong earthquakes over 6 degrees Richter leave us only with minor (if none) damage.
In Italy all this is hard to do, we are talking about monuments that are hundreds of years old and they are the first to suffer damages. But what makes us really angry right now is that other very recent buildings (including factories) were damaged because apparently they were built with no respect of the rules regarding earthquakes... There are investigations undergoing and we really hope they find the guilty ones and they can move on.
I read the following editorial from an Italian newspaper called "Il Resto del Carlino" and found it beautiful, here's the original plus my free translation:
"L’Emilia è quel pezzo di terra voluto da Dio per permettere agli uomini di costruire la Ferrari. Gli Emiliani sono così. Devono fare una macchina? Loro ti fanno una Ferrari, una Maserati e una Lamborghini. Devono fare una moto? Loro costruiscono una Ducati. Devono fare un formaggio? Loro si inventano il Parmigiano Reggiano. Devono fare due spaghetti? Loro mettono in piedi la Barilla. Devono farti un caffè? Loro ti fanno la Saeco. Devono trovare qualcuno che scriva canzonette? Loro ti fanno nascere gente come Dalla,Morandi,Vasco,Liga. Devono farti una siringa?loro ti tirano su un’azienda biomedicale. Devono fare 4 piastrelle? Loro se ne escono con delle maioliche. Sono come i giapponesi,non si fermano,non si stancano,e se devono fare una cosa,a loro piace farla bene e bella, ed utile a tutti… Ci saranno pietre da raccogliere dopo un terremoto? Loro alla fine faranno cattedrali."
"Emilia is that piece of land that God created to allow men to build the Ferrari. People from Emilia are like that. They need to build a car? They make you a Ferrari, a Maserati and a Lamborghini. They must build a motorcycle? They build a Ducati. They have to make cheese? They invent the Parmigiano Reggiano. They have to make spaghetti? They create Barilla. They have to get you coffee? They build Saeco machines. They need to find someone to write songs? They give birth to people like Dalla, Morandi, Vasco, Ligabue (all very famous Italian authors and singers, but I guess they forgot Pavarotti - TN). They have to make a siringe? They build up a biomedical company. They have to make tiles? They create maioliche (ceramic famous worldwide - TN). They are like the Japanese, they never stop, never get tired, and if they have to do something, they like to do it beautiful and useful to everyone... There will be rocks and rubble to pick up after the eartquake? They will build cathedrals out of the rocks and rubble."
If you live in Italy and want to help, you can send an sms from your mobile phone to the number 45500 to donate 2 euros.
Or you can send a bank transfer to the Region:
Bank: Unicredit Spa - Branch: Bologna Indipendenza, Bologna
Holder: Regione Emilia-Romagna
(from abroad, BIC/SWIFT: UNCRITB1NU2