Pasqualino Pirina, or Uncle Pirina, as everyone calls him, is one of the Costa Smeralda’s centenarians; he is also the perfect embodiment of the place. “I’ve always had a good life here in the Arzachena countryside, the Costa Smeralda” he says. June 7th is a very important day for him: this year, he celebrated his 105th birthday.
Surrounded by the love of his children, grandchildren, family and friends, Pasqualino received many warm birthday wishes, including those from Hotel Cala di Volpe, which made him a birthday cake and a birthday card written in Gallurese, the dialect spoken in Gallura, the part of Sardinia that includes the Costa Smeralda. In sparkling form, Uncle Pasqualino recounted a number of anecdotes from his long life. “I’ve had many good times, some bad ones. Thankfully, the latter have been few and far between. In 1940, when I was 24, I was called up to fight. I was posted to the front in Croatia, in a tank, but I never saw any combat. Nonetheless, those were four hard years.” Pasqualino’s life has been defined by his love for his family, for his work and for peace. “I’ve done so many things. I’ve been a farmer, a shepherd, and for many years I was a cobbler. I’ve also raised livestock, grown fruit and vegetables, cultivated vines.” And indeed, one of the secrets to his extraordinary longevity is food. “I’ve always eaten home-grown things: piglets, goat, fruit and vegetables. I’ve always been able to rely on Sardinia’s clean air and fertile land. Eating well is good for the health, and so is walking. I’ve always been very active and I recommend it to everyone.”
Sardinia is one of the five Blue Zones, the areas with the highest concentration of centenarians in the world.
In the summer of 2020, Uncle Pasqualino went up to the rock with Costa Smeralda emblazoned on it. He wanted to bear witness to the superb quality of life that the location affords. And he even appeared in a video, inviting everyone to come to Costa Smeralda, “because here, life is good.”
Sardinia is one of the five areas in the world where a higher than usual number of people live much longer than average. Due to its balanced diet and its quality of life, it is characterized by the extraordinary longevity of its inhabitants, so it has been classified as Blue Zones.Read more