Blue Week

by Lucia Iuvone

Ten days dedicated to sailing with rules and discipline, rigour and friendship for
young people living with vision loss.

Haul taut the mainsail… Let's go at full throttle … Go to the prow… I'm at the stern...
These are the orders Camilla, Michele, Alice, Filmon, Wesley, Antony, Andrea, Luca, Elena, Lorenzo, Martina, Giulia, Titti, Kevin, Debora, Marco Giulio and Francesco exchanged among themselves.
Ten days in Rimini or in Bogliaco sul Garda learning how to sail, the rules of the sport, the discipline and the rigours of the sea but also student spirit, sharing, mutual help and friendship.
Blue Week is the occasion to measure up to the daily challenges one faces particularly with vision loss like these kids.
Their thoughts reflect how enthralling their experience is: "I really had a lot of fun, and on the last day Giulia and I cried because we didn't want to go home. Next year, if they do this again, I am going."
"I was in Bogliaco, a hamlet of Garniano on Lake Garda on the coast of Brescia. I was there because every year Cavazza organizes a sailing course. I was with Francesco and Giulio, my two friends who are blind, and I had so much fun with them during that week; on the sailboat, but also during the free time we had with mamma Cavazza. Unfortunately, while Giulio and Francesco talked I slept soundly because I was so tired after the 5 or 6 hours of sailing we did every day. However, when we navigated, a good part of me felt physically tired because I looked so much at the beautiful town of Bogiaco on the shore of Lake Garda which has three ports, one is municipal, the other, in the south, is called Port 2000, and the last one, in the north, is smaller and called Homerus.

Port Homerus, to tell the truth, was for the full week my favourite port because the members of a sailing club called Homerus the "independent sailing port for blind and visually impaired people".
So, we went out every day on the boat and it was then that I could dream endlessly looking at the landscape.
From the lake, the landscape seemed to be made of so many eyes looking astonished at the immense lake of gold, but the most beautiful thing was that the eyes were ours. To me, at that moment, I felt like I was a king because we were surrounded by such wealth of nature. However, I felt really good in the middle of the lake, but the most beautiful part was when we went 2 or 3 miles away from Bogliaco, we discovered an even more beautiful landscape enriched with small towns, lovely small villas or larger ones of the eighteenth-century.
Unfortunately, my two friends on the boat with me could not see the landscape, but sometimes when it was difficult even for me to see our instructor described it to us and we were astonished by everything around us.
But, when I could see something I immediately told Franceso and Giulio; they asked me often to describe things to them and I loved telling them."

Image - Logo of Project Homerus

Picture - Blind and visually impaired kids on a sailboat

Picture - Bogliaco on Lake Garda