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Ladies and gentlemen ... the Mondine!

After a forced break to repair the misfortunes of the camper, the machine has properly faced the first trip and I hope that it is going to last for a long time as the final stage is still far; Sicily.
The restart was inaugurated with a very special event: the Mondine ladies of Novi invited me to the first of May lunch in a beautiful house in the middle of the country in Novi of Modena (MO). A very special and lucky (for me) occasion since the festival was organized to replace a missed concert. They say “Every cloud has a silver linings” in fact the Il Cammino della Musica could sneak in the soul of this group of women, rather than observe them only performing on a stage for an audience.
I do not even have time to park the camper that they offer to me a dish of spaghetti with meat sauce served on a table adorned with red carnations and at least 50 people who became immediately friends. Between a song an the other I left at eleven at night.
The chorus of Mondine of Novi is currently composed of about 20 women.  Few among them have actually been mondine or mondariso, women who emigrated during the summer in the plains of Piemonte to spend 40 days bent on the legs, immersed in mud to transplant the rice. More than two hundred from Modena, Ferrara and other cities of Emilia (but also in other regions of Italy)lived with the train, stored in cattle wagons for an adventure that would not have left the mark only in their physical but also in their path as a woman of that time.

The experience of the monda, charged the mondina of a big responsibility, considering that the pay which could glean (900 Lire and a kilo of rice a day in the '47) represented an important source of subsistence for the entire family; Silva tells me that she will never forget the suffering she felt, when a telegram bearing the death of his beloved grandmother, was sent directly to the paddy field with the recommendation to stay there whatever, so as to bring home the whole country.
On the other hand the monda allowed the very young  mondina, to leave the household, where for most of the time she was limited or non-independent. For many Mondine the idea to leave home for a while and contribute to the fate of the family represented a brave adventure sometimes full of dreamy and childish expectations. But the life of mondina (as the video will explain) was not really "wordly" .
The songs of mondine transmit the passion of women who have been sharing a pain. And it is the sharing that makes mondine a strong group. To see them singing give an intense emotion because you can perceive something that is beyond the memory of a past situation. The terms of the "original" Mondine coincide with those of the “acquired" Mondine, women who certainly are not  monda, but they toughly face the nowadays rice field.
Thus the group widens of women, daughters of Mondine, or young girls with no "blood" ties with the rice. Like Margaret, very young, accepted few months ago in the group, but ready to sing because she needs to do it. And Giulia, wise and energetic director of the chorus that has the mission to understand, reinterpret, and convey the meaning of this particular story that is the history of this group.
Lidia, who in the '40 was in the rice fields, showed me the chorus concerts agenda that could be enviable for a rockstar. Very often women like her face very long journeys to convey to foreign publics exciting vibrations made of shared and especially current passions.
Thanks to: ALL THE MONDINE, Elena Parasiliti (director Terre di Mezzo), who has spent a day together with il cammino della musica, Nicola Leonardis (pictures 1 and 2)
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