At least three decades had passed since university and yet with Margherita, Franca and Giulia it is as if time had never passed: they’ve always been here, season after season. We met as freshers in the genetics class. From then on, we were inseparable, so much so that in the second year we went to live together in a neighborhood of Milan not too far from the University. Those were the years in which we made our most beautiful memories: the sleepless nights over the anatomy books, the moka pot always ready on the stove, our first great loves, the first sushi of our life, all the fantasies about the future that always seemed promising and full of possibilities. They are part of my life and it is nice to see them again at least once a year for an evening that, for 33 years now, we continue to dedicate to ourselves every July 14.

This year I invited them to my house after some work on the garden was finished. After years of indecision, in fact, I had finally decided to plant tall bamboo hedges, thus modifying the outdoor spaces of the house and creating a large veranda with a relaxation areaand spa. In this space I set up a table where we had dinner and, after dessert, we started a passion that we have in common for some years now: Buraco. A long outdoor game, spent among memories and wildcards, sipping on Moscow Mules that I had prepared for the evening, illuminated by the white lights that Ihad installed in the garden to bring out the color of the flowers and the green of the plants. Margherita won, confirming once again the theory according to which she really succeeds in everything. She was always the best at university and today she is an established surgeon in Paris while the three of us, a little less fearless in leaving this country to specialize, a little more predisposed to follow family projects, have returned to work in our cities. Life has always smiled at her and luckily it continues to do so, just as it does with all of us who manage not to get lost and who are still together after so many years.

the winner