March 8th is the “Festa della Donna”, AKA” International women’s day”, celebrated here with sprigs of mimosa because it flowers at this time. “A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women,” is the UN’s theme for this year – a poignant reminder for Italy where last year one woman was killed on average every three days by her husband or partner.
Despite this grim statistic and the persistent rain, the celebration in the historic casino at Bagni di Lucca was a joyful and beautifully presented occasion with a very varied exhibition of paintings, sculptures and photographs on the theme of woman, an exquisite harp recital, an evocative exhibition of women’s historic handicrafts, including dressmaking, lacework and weaving, poems dedicated to woman both in Italian and English and a delicious “rinfresco”.
Inaugurating the occasion, the mayor paid homage to the organisers and praised the return of the casino to its original function of providing a spectacular backdrop to the town’s festivities. May this initiative continue every future year! The following will give you some idea of what you might have missed.