I think I was about seven years old and I remember it as if it were yesterday.
I went to have a look at my grandfather’s vineyard and I found him bent over a vine.
He was a stern man and I was always awed by him, but there among his vines he had a serene and unusually sweet ex
He turned, saw me and was suddenly serious again.
“Hey, repeat your name!” he said.
I was really frightened. Grandfather’s going mad, I thought. He can’t remember my name!
I started to run away, but he took me by the arm and asked again:
“Quickly, tell me, what’s your name?”
“Gerardo”, I answered, in a small voice.
“Your name’s Gerardo”, he said, “the same as mine. That’s why my vineyards will be yours one day”.
When I remember him now, it makes me smile when I think how proud I am, after more than thirty years and many adventures too, to claim my roots in my grandfather’s legacy and make it the focus of my life. I know now that the real legacy I inherited goes beyond vineyards: it is a legacy of values, a love for things “done properly”; a desire to accomplish rather than to possess.
And so I would like to dedicate everything I have done and will do to my family. To my grandfather, who quietly pointed out what proved to be the right path for me to follow. To my parents and especially my father, a notary public, who taught me the determination to achieve goals and the respect for tradition. To my mother-in-law with her extraordinary generosity and strength. And to my father-in-law, a remarkable man who would undoubtedly have continued to encourage me with his inimitable enthusiasm and love for life.
And my wife? I can only say that without her, this adventure would never have even begun!