Carmine Rubicco

Lorenzo and his passion

Lorenzo, 18 years old, athletic figure, quick talker and sharp eyes, runs a small shop in Naples but would like to play football.
Lorenzo | ©Carmine Rubicco, 2019

This post is also available in: Italiano

Hopefully, the doctors will be able to fix me quickly so I can return to the soccer school.” So greets Lorenzo as he leans out of his ‘cuoppi‘ store in the heart of Spaccanapoli.

Lorenzo (Naples), 18, athletic physique, ready talker and sharp eyes. He has been running the small store for a year and a half since a congenital leg problem prevented him from continuing soccer school in Macerata.

One passion: football

Football is a family passion as well as a city passion. It was his father who fixed it in the young Neapolitan’s soul. Life in the Marches was quiet, punctuated by tight but bearable rhythms because they were driven by an inner need. Returning to Naples was not easy. Especially with the knowledge that he could not continue in sports.

Lorenzo did not let discouragement overcome him. Again with the help of his parent, he opened a small store among the narrow streets of the old town. Here the pattern of days changed dramatically. It took a while before we could get the right one. Now Lorenzo is a perfect creator of cuoppi, which is that conical cardboard container filled with fried typicalities. Tourists come and go nonstop but not in a crowded manner. They approach, choose the many dishes, and sit at adjacent tables waiting patiently.

The young man from Naples without stopping or hurrying prepares the orders and then distributes them by shouting their names from the window that separates him from the street. The ‘worst’ time, he reveals, is not summer. The time when it almost cannot move from the exorbitant number of requests is the Christmas holidays. In December, the stalls that characterize Naples’ alleys steal his table space, forcing customers to stand in front of the store. His is not a complaint. It is simply explaining how you do your work.

The love of soccer has certainly not abandoned him. A photo of Maradona hanging in the small hallway next to the counter says so, and so does his hope to one day be able to return to the field.

When the doctors he called on succeed in putting his legs, which were born with longer-than-normal bones, back in order.

Text & Photos: Carmine Rubicco 
Original text in Italian - In house translation
Napoli, Italy
DooG's Contributor
Carmine Rubicco
Journalist | Photographer

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