You Are But You Are Not – Report 2Gym


Moving between observed and narrated reality

On 10th of May we, the class 2Gym, participated in the audio project “You are, but you are not” by Lungomare.

This project consisted of listening to an audio guide while walking through parts of the city. Beginning at the station, we followed the railway continuing along Piazza Verdi and Via Marconi, finally arriving at Parco Rosegger. Using the headphones that we had put on at the beginning, we could hear the voice of a narrator who told us the realistic story of a refugee arriving in Bolzano.

He explained the feeling of being trapped by the mountains which felt like borders. This opened a door into a world in which human rights are safeguarded and it’s possible to make a new start. A door into a world that is less harmful and less dominated by fear. He revealed the situation of loneliness and being unknown in a foreign city. This let us feel connected to these refugees and what it is like to be them.

We felt authentic emotions, regarding heartbreaking memories of a so-called “outsider”. We realised the difficulties they have to go through and saw our own city from a different angle. Everyone had different experience: some felt alone but not lonely, some relaxed and some were disorientated.

We felt it was a unique experience and we hadn’t expected something like that. At the end of the audio tour we were sitting on the benches in the peaceful natural surroundings of the park. Some felt connected and others apart from the rest of the world.

On the way back to our meeting point we had to observe everything and everyone, to think about the borders we could see and find. We thought about how every door or gate or wall can be a border for someone. Perhaps a door into a world that is less harmful and less dominated by fear. The group of refugees were sitting together in a corner of the park and thought about how isolated they were from us, from our reality, from our world. Just sitting there and listening to music together. Here there was no need for walls or doors.

There had been a border between them and us, but then there was only the invisibility of borders.

At the park it was nice to work with other people with whom we usually don’t have much contact. It was interesting to hear others’ opinions and personal experiences and listen to little parts of their lives. It was also nice and friendly because we felt closer to the person.

We also talked about the word “BORDER” in Italian and it was interesting to realise what it means and how many different possibilities of interpretation it has.

This experience was something new and we would recommend it to others, because “if we don’t look into each other’s eyes, we will have nothing to say to each other.”

Class 2nd Gymnasium “Walther von der Vogelweide” Bozen