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the roman emperor of a thousand perversions

Cesar CerveraCesar Cervera



Each emperor has had to deal with his own black legend and today it is difficult to separate the reality from the lie. But, even removing tons of hype from Suetonius and Cassius on Caligula, what looms below is a sex-obsessed psychopath and lousy leader.

Stephen Dando-Collins, author of dozens of historical biographies, has just published in Spain an essay on the monarch that rigorously analyzes his mental state and uses his knowledge of the legions to expand the image that exists about this period. In “Caligula: The Mad Emperor of Rome”, edited by the Book Sphere, the Australian expert traces the life and personality of the “most infamous emperor” and seeks to address distortions, half-truths and misunderstandings to draw a more faithful portrait of the young man.

A very wrong first impression

Born with the name of Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus, Tiberius’s heir was the third of the six surviving children of the marriage between Germanicus and Agrippina the Elder, Augustus’s granddaughter. Caligula’s name was, in fact, a nickname given to him by the soldiers when he accompanied his father as a child in the campaigns of Germania. They nicknamed him «Caligula» («Botita»), which years later would irritate him enormously, because he was dressed in a miniature version of the legionnaire suit.

Educated in the town of Capri, the main training companions of the Roman had been children of foreign kings sent to the capital of the empire as a guarantee. In short, Caligula lived his childhood and adolescence in a bubble, surrounded by oriental princes with a different way of understanding power and with his sisters as best friends. Already then rumors arose that he had had sex with them.

When Tiberius died, Caligula held no official position and his political experience was limited to a lesser position. The people ignored the new Emperor’s complete lack of experience because he remembered his father fondly and, above all, because his first measure was to abolish treason proceedings, a legal mechanism that had allowed Tiberius to persecute his enemies with impunity. Time was going to show that they couldn’t be more wrong in their enthusiasm.

The first sign that Caligula lived off the blows of effect took place with the execution of Macron, prefect of the Praetorian Guard and suspected of having killed Tiberius. According the historian Philo, the Emperor suddenly got fed up with his old friend: «Here comes the teacher from whom he no longer needs any lessons … How dare someone teach me, that before I was even begotten I was modeled emperor, how Does an ignorant person dare to teach those who know? ».

Caligula presented himself as a god who had to be worshiped in life, unlike the Divine Julius Caesar or Augustus, and began a life of extravagance

Without the man in the shadows who executed his enemies, while controlling their instability, the darkest months of the Emperor began. Caligula was presented as a god to be worshiped in life, unlike the Divine Julius Caesar The Augusto, and began a life of extravagance. The classical authors wanted to see at the origin of these practices a medical explanation and a kilometer zero.

A psychopath in front of Rome

Within months of acceding to the throne, in the fall of AD 37, Caligula suffered what probably was a nervous breakdown or encephalitis (an inflammation of the brain caused by some type of infection). Suetonio mentions that during his childhood he had already registered serious medical problems, with a periodic seizure of epilepsy that in adulthood turned into blackouts. However, Dando-Collins recalls that in the first months of his reign he acted correctly and was worshiped by the populus, who praised his actions. “Seemingly overnight, he became fickle, capricious and cruel,” he says. Senate propaganda put the loudspeaker on his extravagant acts

Bust of Gaius Caligula in the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
Bust of Gaius Caligula in the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek

‘He was tall, pale and thick; her legs and neck were very thin, her eyes were sunken, her temples were depressed; the broad and bulging forehead; sparse hair, with the upper part entirely bald and the body very hairy, “Suetonius described his physical appearance, adding that given his abundant body hair, it was punishable by death to use the word” goat “in his presence.

In contrast to his “humble” predecessors, Caligula was revealed as an Asian monarch in his excessive way of life. According Cassius Dio, “He began to spend on horses, gladiators and other similar things without any restraint, and in a very short time he emptied his treasured money, which was a lot”, that is, about three billion sesterces.

With part of this money he had a mansion built in Rome on the Palatine, whose hall was the very temple of Castor and Pollux, as well as a series of constructions next to Lake Nemi. There he docked two giant ships, 70 meters long, authentic floating palaces where he organized some of his most excessive parties. In the bacchanalia, aggressions and perversions against the guests were frequent.

And it is that the sex life of the Emperor is the best known element, and at the same time fabled, of Caligula’s biography. He was accused of sleeping with the wives of his subjects, linking sex with physical pain and trying to turn his palace into a large brothel. During his brief reign he had four wives and countless lovers. It is said that Livia Orestila was raped in his own betrothal ceremony and married her to disown her after a few days.

“When he came to power, Caligula was certainly openly promiscuous with the wives of important senators, partly to humiliate their husbands. He even stole a wife from his husband on the wedding night. “

Of his homosexual relationships, the Greek actor Mnester and his cousin Emilio Lepido are often mentioned among the best known. The latter played a leading role at the political level until, at the end of 39, the Emperor accused him of leading a plot against him and ordered his execution. Lepidus acknowledged before dying that he had had sexual relations with the Emperor and that his belly was aching from the passion that he had put into them, which suggested that he had exercised the active role in the sexual act. In this sense, the Romans, more tolerant of homosexuals than the Greeks, gave great importance to who played the active role and who played the passive role in the couple, both on a sexual and social level. Passivity was a sign of weakness.

About this myth of the wicked emperor, the Dando-Collins book tries to separate the chaff from the wheat: “When he came to power, Caligula was certainly openly promiscuous with the wives of important senators, partly to humiliate their husbands. He even stole a wife from the husband on their wedding night. But there is no evidence that he participated in group sex sessions as an emperor. And when he married Cesonia [su cuarta esposa] it seems that the rest of his short life was rigorously faithful to him ».

The horse that wanted to be a senator

When this first conspiracy broke out against the Emperor, Caligula revealed another of his monstrosities by reveling in the torture of each of the conspirators. Watching others tortured had been something he had loved to do since the time of Tiberius. Warned by this first conspiracy, Caligula wanted to show that he was a thorough man leading a military campaign in Britain. However, the invasion was soon aborted and the Emperor ordered the soldiers to collect shells from the beach to justify that it was Neptune who had foiled the attack. Or, at least, so the legend tells.

In the pages of “Caligula: The Mad Emperor” the hypothesis is raised that the episode of the shells had its origin in the refusal of the legionaries, as they would also do years later with Claudio, to embark for Britain. An enraged Caligula ordered the soldiers to collect shells as an ironic punishment for their disobedience.

Back in the city, the Emperor scandalized the political class by announcing that he wanted to appoint his horse Incitatus as senator, although Dando-Collins clarifies in his book that it was only an advertisement as a joke. “This seems to have been both a symptom of his impatience with the Roman Senate and an example of his outlandish sense of humor,” he clarifies.

The Assassination of Emperor Caligula by Lazzaro Baldi.
The Assassination of Emperor Caligula by Lazzaro Baldi.

A great number of senators and members of the Roman army ignited a new conspiracy before the extravagances and increasing violence of Caligula. On January 24, AD 41, Caligula was stabbed by a tribune of the imperial bodyguard when he was engrossed in watching a theatrical performance. The mastermind of the plot was a praetorian officer named Casio Querea, who planned the assassination using the cryptoporticus, that is, the underground tunnel that connected the palaces of the Palatine Hill.

Heeding Suetonius, the Praetorian organized the assassination to take revenge on Caligula for making fun of his effeminate voice daily, calling him Priapus or Venus or shaking his hand to kiss her with an exaggerated attitude. The Praetorians’ involvement in the conspiracy set a precedent that doomed Rome to a long time of instability.

A diagnosis

But, Are all the perversions related to Caligula true? For Suetonius and Dio Cassius, there is no doubt that he was a cruel monster. But it is always important to distrust the intentions of those who write the story. The only verifiable thing about Caligula’s case is that, in effect, he behaved in a despotic way, despised the Senate and neglected his responsibilities as manager. That made his extravagances, whether exaggerated or completely true, the preferred workplace for propagandists, almost always members of the equestrian house, who wanted to warn future leaders of the inappropriateness of removing senators from power. Writing about sexual vices in a society that praised moderation was the best way to look down on rulers in the eyes of the people.

“Bipolar patients suffer spectacular mood swings, going from moments of great excitement in which they display great energy, hyperactivity, excessive self-confidence and loss of contact with reality to episodes of sadness, depression, lethargy”

In this sense, Dando-Collins defends in his book that Caligula’s madness and extravagances had their cause in a mental illness that is easily diagnosed today, such as bipolar disorder. «Those who suffer from it experience improvements and worsening, which would explain why Caligula interspersed episodes of apparent insanity with others in which he showed rational behavior and made sensible decisions. Bipolar patients suffer spectacular mood swings, going from moments of great excitement in which they display great energy, hyperactivity, excessive self-confidence and loss of contact with reality to episodes of sadness, depression, lethargy, introversion and physical fatigue »

Suetonius, without knowing it, made a very precise diagnosis of the disease at a time when there was no treatment for this type of patient: «I am convinced that a brain disease was responsible for its two contradictory vices; overconfidence and extreme withdrawal.

See them


Disconnect and go crazy with soundtrack

“Disconnect, disconnect, disconnect!” was the premise that on Friday night the clown Guillem Albà imposed on the public of the Teatre Municipal de Girona on Friday evening, as part of the programming of the Temporada Alta festival.

Accompanied by the musicians of La Marabunta, he premiered a new show, Jaleiu, which, like its predecessor Marabunta combines live music and the clown or, rather, puts the melodies at the service of humor.

Disguised as a police officer, partyman or charlatan politician, the comic played with the performers and their instruments and found the complicity of the spectators, whom he made sing and pour popcorn on top, to pull off 90 minutes of madness and songs.

“If it weren’t for the covid, I’d throw it at you!” He joked to the audience, threatening the audience with a cream cake that ended up in the face of a poor volunteer celebrating his birthday just Friday. It was one of the few references to traditional clowns and the pandemic, beyond covered faces, because it more than fulfilled its goal of helping to disconnect, disconnect, disconnect.


“The naked madness + X” at the Dresden State Theater

HHasn’t one always suspected that the theater is going haywire? At the rehearsals anyway and sometimes also at the performances? But things have been much, much more turbulent in Michael Frayns since 1982 on countless stages of the successful comedy “Der nackte Wahnsinn”. The author, born in London in 1933, knows the theater well – and yet loves it. With his knowledge of the conditions of some productions and the imponderables of some performances, he succeeds in preventing the audience from simply laughing at the theater. Instead, they laugh with him and with everyone who makes it possible evening after evening. That is the serious core, which is tricked, however, in an extremely amusing way, after all Michael Frayn is a master of his trade, which says: Do what you want, just never bore your audience!

Anmaßende Performance

The director Sebastian Hartmann would probably claim something similar for himself, albeit using completely different means. At the Staatsschauspiel Dresden he is not doing what his job would be – staging a play – but something completely different, for which he has a far stronger inclination: He reduces each original to a few loosely carved components and blows the mania down to his high-priced, exuberant mania to a crazy, unbridled, presumptuous performance, which in turn is coherent in the best case. Anyone who doesn’t know “Der nackte Wahnsinn” won’t get to know the comedy in Hartmann’s Directed Meatloaf, and whoever knows it won’t recognize it anymore. Nevertheless, a lot can be learned about the sheer madness of a theater production, the endangerment of artistic dreams and the troubles of everyday theater. The ensemble doesn’t care about sense and understanding, nor about the gorgeous comic narrative context of the original; it prefers to use fables, casually and as if unintentionally touching it, into full-blown monologues.

This number revue has to do with the Corona distance rules, but as an absurd aesthetic guideline it is also the backbone of the staging. On the empty stage, whose portal Hartmann framed in personal union as a stage designer with 46 white lightbulbs, everyone has their own piece in mind, as well as their individual concept of their appearance and their represented figure. Adriana Braga Peretzki has designed an abundance of crazy costumes, colorful, glittering evening dresses and trashy show fuss, also a skin-tight one-piece with a tiger pattern, in which Philipp Lux, as set designer Tim, jumps through the confusion of his imagination and looks like his actual tamer. Eva Hüster, Poppy’s assistant director, wears a penguin throw over her pink party dress and plays a stupid music tutorial, Nadja Stübiger shines as a resolute, loosely red wrapped Dotty who starts to toss from the dressing table out of the swaying shop.

As a battered director Lloyd, Torsten Ranft changes clothes almost constantly, flocks as Pierrot as if he were a bad-tempered dancer on the verge of a nervous breakdown through the rubble of his staging visions, which he and the troupe do not satisfy despite a lot of live video, light spectacles, rhythmic music and steam.

Suddenly it gets really serious

Hartmann unleashes an adventurous chaos and brings this nightmare onto the stage in a theatrically convincing, intense and imaginative way. However, he called the two-hour evening “The Naked Wahnsinn + X”. Behind the “X” is a long monologue, which he wrote himself and which Cordelia Weg recites with great emphasis and holy fervor. Hartmann may have inspired this experiment as an author with his production of “Lear after Shakespeare” 2019 at the Deutsches Theater Berlin, which Cordelia Weg concluded with the monologue “Die Politiker” by Wolfram Lotz.

Now now, sometimes rhymed, always desolate, in an apocalyptic stream of associations, presumably the downfall of the West and in any case in multiple repetitions of “death in bed” is conjured up. Suddenly the idea, which previously anarchically relied on jokes and irony and certainly not on deeper meaning, suddenly takes itself terribly seriously. And Sebastian Hartmann, the proud piece-smasher, has his own text declaimed solemnly and bombastically, which doesn’t make him any better. Then everyone happily dance away the burdensome celebration in a bizarre distance choreography. Let’s just say: Even if this performance is madness, it has method.


Urwahn Stadtfuchs in the test: bike from the 3-D printer – Auto & Mobil

The first glance at Urwahn’s bike leaves you with the feeling that something is missing. The rear diagonal of the frame, the seat post, does not lead down to the crank, but turns halfway towards the rear axle. Where else two bars run on a bike, one is enough here.

The bent steel frame is the heart of the designer Sebastian Meinecke. The Urwahn boss has won design awards and made a name for himself among experts. The engineer for sports equipment has been tinkering with the construction of innovative bicycles for years, first creating contract work under the name SME Bicycles. Then, among other things, he developed the novel frame for his company Urwahn, which should not only look good, but should also be comfortable. Co-founder Ramon Thomas explains: “Similar to the rear legs of a fox, the elastic rear end guarantees dynamic maneuverability and compensates for uneven road surfaces.”

After the first model with the appropriate name “Stadtfuchs”, Urwahn is now launching a pedelec on the market. Looks almost exactly like the city fox, but is called “top dog”. First of all, it does what Thomas promises. The typical bumps in city traffic, from road edges to cobblestones, are no more unpleasant than on a bike with a conventional suspension fork. Damping via the curved rear tube works.

A changed statics of a frame leads to interested looks among bicycle lovers, because this is extremely rare. The frames of the bicycles sold in Germany come to far more than 90 percent from the Far East, and even high-priced brands mainly order them in Taiwan. They come off the shelf, so to speak, which keeps prices down, but also ensures a certain monotony. In Germany, the components are mostly attached and assembled. The fact that the small company Urwahn can now choose a new approach is due to the manufacturing process: the frame comes from the 3D printer.

Urwahn Team

The two Urwahn managing directors Sebastian Meinecke (left) and Ramon Thomas.

(Photo: Stefan Deutsch / Urwahn)

The process was unknown in the industry

“The 3D printing made the Urwahn bike possible without compromising on design and functionality,” says Ramon Thomas. But it took a while until a finished product appeared. Thomas says the company was unable to build on past experience because the process was unknown to the industry. 3-D printing with metals is more common in aerospace or medical technology, other industries use it to manufacture prototypes. Urwahn struggled with financial problems, but then, according to Thomas, was able to benefit from funds from the state of Saxony-Anhalt’s economy and received money from investors.

Several individual parts of the steel frame are now built up in layers from metal powder using a “generative laser melting process”. Then they are welded together by the company Rotor Bikes in Leipzig, the seams are handcrafted so that in the end nothing is visible.

The thing about the kink: bicycles from additive manufacturing can spring with the help of the frame without the material getting tired.

(Photo: Felix Meyer / Urwahn)

Magdeburgers can thus manufacture their exclusive models, the steel frame is relatively thin-walled, which means that the “top dog” with 14.5 kilograms has little weight for a pedelec. The bike is manufactured entirely in Germany, there are no logistics costs from the Far East. Nevertheless, the price shows that the process is not cheap. The pedelec from the 3-D printer costs just under 4,500 euros, which should significantly limit the number of customers. “In fact, the process is not cheap. The cost of an Urwahn frame far exceeds that of a standard frame made in Taiwan or China,” says Thomas. The printer alone, which is located at a company in Dresden, costs up to 400,000 euros plus additional costs, for example for qualified personnel. Urwahn shares the machine with other companies.

Nevertheless, David Eisenberger, spokesman for the two-wheeler industry association ZIV, says: “The technology is very interesting for the future.” The industry is expecting costs to decrease, making the benefits of 3D printing more attractive. Above all, this would save time in production, says Eisenberger, the wheels would also be lighter and, like Urwahn, there would be opportunities for innovations in bicycle construction. Why isn’t a big manufacturer relying on it? “Sometimes it is easier if you first look at innovations and then access them when the development is sufficiently advanced.” The Magdeburgers have decided to take the risk. In addition to Urwahn, only the Australian company Bastion Cycles is considered a 3-D printing pioneer who brings series wheels. The US company Arevo recently presented a pedelec made from a plastic fiber printer.

No display on the handlebar

Urwahn claims to sell 200 bikes this year. Since the model “Stadtfuchs” also costs 3650 euros in its basic configuration, the company is looking for enthusiasts who want to have a futuristic bike a little bit expensive and who value puristic design. The pedelec should be one of the few that do without a display that shows the speed and battery level. The latter must be accessed via a switch on the handlebar, which lights up four colors, depending on the charge level. At the switch, the driver also controls how much power is switched on by the battery and whether the light built into the handlebars and seat post lights up. The engine comes from Mahle Ebikemotion from Stuttgart, whereby the interaction between muscle power and electronics is good, but not always perfect. A plastic belt instead of a metal chain is part of the zeitgeist, just like the single-speed single-speed model and a built-in GPS tracker as an anti-theft device. It costs 180 euros extra, but is probably not a bad idea for the total price.

Editor’s note

Some of the products presented were made available to the editors by the manufacturers for test purposes and / or presented on trips to which journalists were invited.


«I am superresponsible, within my madness»

Show, daring, celebrity and even a tribute to Pedro Almodóvar. It is the bet of the humorist and reporter Susi Caramelo on his first solo show, ‘Candy’, (# 0 of Movistar), in which there will be no lack of fun or new facets of the popular reporter. I’m not going to give up glamor and celebrity, of course. We are going to have a couple of very crazy cameos with well-known faces, invited to each program, and we will even pay tribute to Pedro Almodóvar. It is made with a lot of love, more organized and more structured; You will also get to know new facets of mine such as that of a dancer, ”the reporter laughs out loud at the show’s presentation to the press.

Susi Caramelo (Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, ​​39) debuts as a presenter with ‘Orgullo Caramelo’, a special twice as long as ‘Caramelo’, the weekly 30-minute program that will hit the channel in September. In it, Susi will try to fulfill her dreams and wishes, such as “giving the unofficial proclamation of the Pride festivities”, which takes place in this installment, in which she will also interview José Manuel Parada.

-At last get a program. What can be seen in it?

-Can I do better? I do not think so. We will have guests, performances, and above all, a lot of me and my surroundings will be seen. We are going to introduce my world, and people are going to meet my neighbors, roommates … Even my facet as a dancer is going to be seen. It is me in its purest form, going out to the street to have fun, unconfident, with a crazy desire to have fun.

-And with the table in tow.

-Yes, they made me a tacky fabric table, super funny, and we planted it in the park next to my house, where I put the dog down, because I didn’t want to move much either. They proposed to me to do it on set, which can be done with limited audience, but I said: “I’ve been locked up for three months, what I want is a terrace.”



“You have waited all your life for this moment, and when it comes, they will plant a mask for you”


“I haven’t had time to assimilate success; I have worked so hard that I have not even been to a party »

-Do your dreams fit in one season?

-Nerd. I have a ribbon that I do not finish, so I hope to do very well, because my wishes are going to be more and more expensive.

-How have you experienced success as a result of your reports for Movistar?

– It has not given me time to assimilate it, because, since I was working so much, I did not go to a party, and that is that they are inviting me to everything. Although it may not seem so, I am superresponsible, within my madness. And then suddenly, confinement came, so now I don’t plan to miss a single one. I’m going to do whatever it takes to balance everything. You have waited your whole life for this moment, and when it comes, they go and plant a mask on your face. With her, now she doesn’t even recognize my name, and I want to go outside and have people say to me: “What’s wrong, Susi?”

Word of law

Did you ever think that the project could be frustrated?

-From Movistar they have always given me a lot of security and told me that they wanted to continue with it. What was not known was when, because everything stopped. It was scheduled for the end of April-May, and is finally coming out now, in July. We have been working this time and have been true to their word; I have not been told: “We are going to give you a program”, and then: “We are no longer giving it to you.” I would have sunk into shit, really.

Do you feel more pressure now?

-Yes. There always is, but you can’t stay on that, because if you don’t, you won’t advance. If I stop to think about all the people behind me, I get stuck. I am very sure of myself, of the people who are with me, and we are going to go forward. You do not have to be afraid. Opportunities, when they come, must be taken.

-Are you going to continue counting on Luis Álvaro?

-Yes. He’s co-directing, and also taking care of the script part, along with me. When something works I think that it should not be changed. I’ve been working with him for many years, and he’s the best ‘one-liner’ in Spain. He is a very creative guy, and in all the projects I do I try to keep him with me.

-In the promotion he talks about having just broken their relationship. Was it to get ahead of the heart press?

-Well, I’m a very frank aunt. When I have linked up with an uncle, I have told it, and now that we have broken up, I count it the same, without dramas. Nothing happens. Relationships sometimes work and flow, and sometimes they don’t. And this time it has not flowed, what are we going to do. Now, ask me who I want to link to.


Tax cuts as of July 1st present problems for companies

Most companies have to consult external SAP consultants for the conversion of VAT.
Picture: dpa

The core of the stimulus package is the temporary reduction in VAT. However, the start date in a few weeks presents the economy with high hurdles. Because the catalogs are printed and SAP experts are not available.

DThe most surprising part of the federal government’s stimulus package was the reduction in VAT for six months. Since this became known on Thursday, tax consultants’ phones have been running hot, corporate finance and IT departments are sweating, spontaneously formed project teams are starting their work, and the demand for SAP programmers is skyrocketing. The president of the tax advisor association, Harald Elster, summarizes what unites all those involved in the companies and associations: “A reduction in sales tax rates from July 1st is absolute madness.”

Stefanie Diemand

Bernd Freytag

Bernd Freytag

Business correspondent Rhein-Neckar-Saar based in Mainz.

Georg Giersberg

Georg Giersberg

Business editor, responsible for “Der Betriebswirt”.

Manfred Schäfers

There is no fundamental doubt about the cyclical impact. But implementation is not possible in the few remaining days, especially since there is no implementation directive from the Ministry of Finance. “Every change that interferes with the day-to-day business of the company results in many changes in the processes,” emphasizes Stefan Böhler, tax consultant at the consulting firm KPMG. This usually takes several months. It is not only necessary to write invoices with new tax rates. The tax rate change also has consequences for the calculation of the companies, for the automatic checking of the incoming invoices up to the alignment of individual cash registers.


How Italy wants to save the bathing season

MThere are some indications that it was only intended as a PR campaign from the start. In any case, the medium-sized company Nuovaneon from the town of Serramazzoni in the Emilia-Romagna region immediately made it into the national headlines. Nuovaneon suggests that people should be entrenched on the beach behind two-meter-high plexiglass walls so that people do not become infected with the corona virus in the coming summer season. In the square boxes with side lengths of four and a half meters and a one and a half meter wide access, the classic beach setting of “due lettini e un ombrellone” (two loungers and a parasol) would fit just like that. Maybe a beach chair and an extra towel.

Matthias Rüb

Political correspondent for Italy, the Vatican, Albania and Malta based in Rome.

Among the professional “bagninos” (lifeguards), the suggestion has amused to horror. “Anyone who has even a little idea of ​​beach tourism knows that you can’t lock yourself in a plexiglass box at 40 degrees,” says Mauro Vanni, President of the Rimini Lifeguards’ Cooperative: “It’s insane about which we don’t even think. ”People might be spared the virus, but in the windlessness of their plexiglass boxes they would dehydrate, the lifeguard says. Vanni also knows of other obscure things: from setting up tent tunnels at the entrance to the beach, for example, in which the summer visitors would be sprayed with disinfectant. And so on.

How can the “sanctified” bathing season be saved?

But people like Vanni, who have decades of experience in beach tourism, by no means dismiss the enormous difficulties in order to even half-save the “sanctified” bathing season in July and August this year. If, for example, the obligation to wear a face mask in public, as it already applies in several regions, is extended to the entire country, a bathing season would be “difficult to imagine”, Vanni concedes – even if other safety measures such as keeping a distance or frequent use are observed Wash and disinfect hands.

Setting up loungers and parasols at a greater distance from each other, setting certain bathing times for certain rows of parasols and loungers so that it doesn’t get too crowded in the water, that would be easy to do, he says. But how should you go swimming with a face mask or even splash around? And how many copies would you need every day if you had to put on a new mouthguard after every trip to the sea? “We will comply with the regulations and at the same time look for solutions that promote tourism,” says Vanni, even if he does not yet know which solutions will ultimately be.

In advance, Vanni and other stakeholders are calling for a “Marshall Plan for the Tourism Industry” on which tens of thousands of jobs and thousands of companies in Italy depend. But Marshall Plans also call for other sectors of the economy, which are also affected by the strict curfew and drastic restrictions on economic activity until at least May 3. But what would a summer 2020 be without a beach vacation on the local coasts, especially if vacation trips abroad would be unaffordable for many in the expected recession?

“There is a strategy behind it”

Despite warnings from experts about a possible second wave of coronavirus infections and Covid-19 infections in summer, regions with long stretches of coast – such as Liguria and Abruzzo – have allowed beach bathing operators this Tuesday, immediately after Easter start preparing for the season. In other regions, the beaches remain strictly cordoned off until early May. The dispute over beach vacations is also not without political polemics. EU Council President Ursula von der Leyen’s advice to the citizens of the Union not to make holiday plans for July and August for the time being due to the coronavirus pandemic has not been well received in Italy.

People like Massimo Casanova, owner of the lido and the “Pepeete Beach” discotheque in Milano Marittima north of Rimini, and since June 2019 a member of the right-wing nationalist party Lega in the European Parliament, suspect that warnings such as that of the German Commission President believe that the holiday destination Italy is sinister further discredit and bring them to their knees. “There is a strategy behind this,” suspects Casanova, who is friends with Lega boss and ex-interior minister Matteo Salvini and who had received this last summer in his lido – with Mojito in hand and with disco music. “The strong powers from abroad are squinting at Italy,” Casanova warns: “For two euros, they want to buy beach pools, hotels, everything.” To prevent this, Italy needs a strong summer season with as many local guests as possible.


7-seater Hyundai Creta in Russia does not expect anything good – it’s easier to buy Kodiaq

Three rows of seats in a compact crossover – already sounds like uniform madness.

Korean designers never cease to amaze the public. Following the KIA Seltos, whose “variator” “flew” on an easy climb to the hill, manufacturers are going to release another debutant on the market, which will be the updated flagship crossover Hyundai Creta, the changes of which will surely surprise the unprepared audience.

And we are not talking about a new Mercedes-Benz-style radiator grill or a modified bumper – motorists all over the world got used to such improvements on the Hyundai Creta. The main innovation of the upcoming Creta will be its interior layout. The Koreans decided that the world lacks a budget crossover for 7 seats, because this Creta has already managed to leave for the first road tests.

Three-row crossover stretched in length by an “impressive” 3 centimeters, which in the thoughts of Korean designers supposedly allows 7 passengers to comfortably move inside the updated Hyundai Creta. And there’s no need to talk about changes in the technical part of the bestseller – the same engines, the same gearboxes, which is strange, since an increase in the power of the car would not hurt for an additional 2 passengers.

Already enough, in principle, to criticize this venture, since it is obvious that Hyundai Creta in Russia, and the rest of the world, will be a failure worse than KIA Seltos. The gearbox in the Crete, of course, will not fall apart at the most inopportune moment, but at the same time, it is difficult to imagine who will buy such a car.

Obviously, an extra 3 centimeters will not be enough for a comfortable ride to the two rear rows of seats, because even in the Skoda Kodiaq with its much larger dimensions there is not much space on the last row of seats. The 7-seater Hyundai Creta is suitable only for large families, because with this interior layout, adults will be comfortable only in front, while 5 children will be accommodated in the back. But for such purposes it is easier and safer to buy a Skoda Kodiaq or even a minivan.