The World of the Bees  

It’s typical of the area where we live, if not of the whole Maremma, to call people not with their own names but with nicknames. The only rule that governs the assigning of nicknames is your immagination.

The name “Lapi” is a family-nickname pronounced in the typical way of our town Catabbio. i lapi actually means le api “the bees”, which live in numerous families continually going and coming from their beehive. My grandfather’s family was very big, eleven children, all of them blond. Considering the amount of people who lived in the house, there was always someone who was arriving and someone who was leaving. The similarity between the two worlds was evident, and, here you are, my family was nicknamed “i Lapi”.

The old family-house was later abandoned and my grandfather moved to a neighbouring farm, where he lived ,”only” with his wife and children. His family and all descendants are still called with the nickname “lapi”, in order to distinguish us from other people living in the same village, who have the same family name.