I love to travel, to travel walking. I laid feet and emotions in many places receiving different experiences in return. I have often walked in the traces of history: Alexander the Great’s Anabasis, the Silk Road, Leonardo da Vinci’s last journey from Rome to Amboise. One journey pulls the other and it was at the very beginning of my “Leonardo 1516”, which I was inspired by it: to walk the Ancient Appia Way.
A friend made me taste a small stretch, little more than a sip, a breath. That was enough. Two years later, in 2018, a tent and notebook in my backpack, I was ready to turn yet another dream into reality: APPIA A PIEDI.
Months of preparation, delving into everything Rgina Viaruom told me. I relied on the traces of the route excellently studied by my friend Riccardo Carnovalini for Paolo Rumiz. I fell in love with Appia even before I walked through it and decided that I would take the baton offered in his book by Rumiz to carry on that splendid project of giving new life to the Way turning it into a Walk, worthy European rival of the best-known Way of Santiago.
A journey to places, in time, between people (living or ghosts of by-times). A trip to the South of Italy that I did not yet know. A journey of sharing, of hospitality. I was looking for humanity; walk together a few meters or some stages. Thanks to these exchanges and meetings I have collected suggestions, emotions and even valuable information, useful to write a Guide (Rome-Benevento and Benevento-Brindisi) and the Travel Diary, perhaps useful in turn to bring alive the Way of Appia. An association was also born: Appia on foot.
It was what I did with those endless sensations, fascinations, information; was what I did with those flavors that caress my palate and my senses, whether it was concrete taste of food and wine or abstract atmosphere of the places. It was what I did by tasting the path along the Way of the Streets.
Four years after my experience, there is still much to do: the Way of Appia is coming to life slowly and with difficulty, but it is a dream achievable. The experienced walker can walk it already today, taking it through six hundred kilometers of experience to the rank of Viator. So I give you the baton.
Ave atque Vale!
of Marino Curnis