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13/01/24 1

Happiness is being there: impressions from the Porto Recanati Olympic Triathlon

After returning from the Olympic triathlon in Porto Recanati, we came across a post from one of the participants: “happiness is smiling and not realizing it. Happiness is being there.” We have to say it: there is nothing more true. After a week of incessant rain, locked in the house under the fire of media terror – finally – a perfect spring day made of effort and fun. The sea, listening to your breathing, riding fast on your bike: and it’s all perfect. This is the main reason why sport is so loved, the possibility of being there. It is a world of personal relationships, challenges, goals and contact with the environment around us – the exact opposite of isolation, individualism and the new normal.

This is a consideration that goes beyond the impositions and needs of the moment, which is anthropological: an entire way of life swallowed up by digital processes, speed and a language without history has disappeared. The risk is no longer being able to bridge the gap between idea and reality. Sport in this sense is a bulwark, because it imposes a relationship with one’s own limits – the objective ones – with one’s own body and with others, in their physicality. Contrast with Instagram filters, likes and the self-dispersion they create. This is true even for those who simply love sport, but don’t practice it: following a championship match in streaming is not like finding yourself in the corner singing (you can often not even see the match from the corner!), just as it is nice to be in the I go around and see the athletes go up the hill, cheering them on, rejoicing with them. It’s the difference between entertainment and participation. Memes and Tik Toks make you smile, while jokes from friends can give us an unforgettable day.

There have been months in which the Italians have done everything possible to maintain their training discipline and we have to thank them. Thanks for continuing to be there.

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