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The riverbank, in Fontanelle, is curvy as the branch of the olive tree: it follows the bed of the Stirone and then it divert to go to the Altocò, part of land surrounded by the Taro River, which is often inundated.

Between the many people who rode the bike on the riverbank, there was the postman of the town. He enjoyed going up and down to deliver the mail to the houses near the riverbank. He often used to arrive home for lunchtime without any hunger, because every person of the town offered him eggs, slices of salami, cakes, bread…the postman was friend with everyone and riding the bike was so tiring!

One day a lady who was waiting for him on the doorstep, asked him if he wanted to listen to a tale. Once he finished the delivery route, the postman stopped at her place and listened to her the story while eating a piece of cake.

It was June 1948 and people used to spend the night in the town, meeting up with friends.

One day a friend asked her to go with him to follow the priest of the village: almost every night the reverend was going to play cards with a group of people and was eating and drinking as anyone else. After, he used to go back to the rectory and tell the housekeeper that he went to visit the sick and needy people of the town up to late night.

The two friend wanted to make joke of him, so they called another boy, smart and sharp, who came back living in the town after the war, and they decide to organize “the priest haunting”: this would have been a game where everyone was supposed to draw the route of the poor man on a map created by the boy. They kept on playing for few days, and when the routes were all drawn on the map, they hanged it on the church door, with the title “the charitable works of our priest”.

The housekeeper was the first to see the paper and got very angry: she asked the priest for explanation and they say they did not talk to each other for a while.

In the village, they laughed about it for days and everyone was kidding the priest by greeting him taking off his hats and saying: “Welcome back Don!” any time he passed by.

The name of the smart boy who organized everything was Giovannino.

(From a tale of Raffaele Romita, postman of Fontanelle di Roccabianca)

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