Everybody is exhausted. Two weeks after the earthquake that wiped out Amatrice, Arquata del Tronto, Accumoli and other villages, those staying in the tent city say they can’t stand it anymore. Deep, dark circles loom in each face: The seismic tremors have not stopped, the earth trembles constantly and it is hard to sleep at night. “We are safe under the blue tents,” they all say.
Everything is moving, everything is light, nothing can come crashing down like the stone houses in the small towns, but the reality of the facts is not enough to calm the nerves of those who woke up at 3:36 a.m. on Aug. 24 to see their lives crumble.
In the field of Grisciano, a small suburb of Accumoli, everyone is trying to figure out when the transition period in the tents will end. People lined up for lunch have the weary look of people who just want to go home, even if their houses are gone. Someone says he’s gotten offers from friends and relatives to move away, at least temporarily, but in the end pride will prevail. Those who had a chance have already gone elsewhere; those who did not feel like leaving have stayed, waiting for a breakthrough that now seems like a utopia. The elderly do not want to move away from their homes: They were not just stone buildings, but symbols of a lifetime of sacrifice.