Hiking with donkey
The donkey is a great educator and a mediator between teens and the environment. For this reason, hiking with the donkey is very educational. First of all, the donkey is cute and brings joy to anyone who looks at him or anyone who approaches him. It doesn’t judge, doesn’t comment, doesn’t wear trendy clothes, no airs and graces, it is humble and friendly, but independent and strong. For this reason it is very easy to get in tune with it. The donkey is like a guitar, it aggregates, and unwittingly you are involved. It’s a slow animal, so it teaches you to “slow down”, giving you the chance to observe well, to appreciate the little things that, step by step, you find in your path.
It invites teens to prudence, being a prudent animal: if it senses danger, it stops and goes around the obstacle.
Moreover it’s stubborn but doesn’t give up, so it teaches tenacity, an excellent example and stimulus for boys and girls, who nowadays, are easily pliable. It is a great animal to strengthen self-esteem in troubled teens: it isn’t scary, it leaves you to brush and look after him with tranquility, it asks and gives you pampering, it is reassuring and transmits calm. The donkey doesn’t obey you if it is abused, but it cooperates if it is indulged and pampered. Therefore, it teaches sensitivity and respect for others. The donkey is a symbol of our recent history, of the agricultural past, when it replaced engines and tractors in almost all daily events. At donkey’s pace you can follow the ancient routes, the comfortable and shaded bridleways, for all ages and gaits.
Example of a typical day:
Morning: Approach with the donkey and walk with donkeys in Val Castoriana
Lunch with local products.
Afternoon: donkey outdoor games and visit to the farm near our center.
The places of visit: Val Castoriana between Ancarano and Campi Alto di Norcia
Insights: driven contact with animals, the donkey and its historical importance, the rural world of the Apennines, the traditional farming and agriculture, the environment of the Apennines (forest, river, meadow and pasture), the art centers of the Val Castoriana (S. Salvatore and Campi Alto), specific techniques of cultivation, the Benedictine movement.