The text was automatically translated with Google Translate. It will be updated soon.
Sporty, athletic and with a clean face. The classic that defines itself as “a good boy” all home-work. Hands up those who would not want to have him as their daughter’s boyfriend … But behind this calm and mild aspect he hides himself from the other who is his opposite and translates into a complex and wonderfully rich word of power and energy: restlessness.
Francesco Sena is someone who never stops traveling, searching, discovering, experimenting. A “pioneer of the different”. One who never stops, and perhaps for this reason, loves the sea. We interviewed him to get to know him better and to tell us what he has done in his life to date. Don’t worry, it’s all interesting.
Some beautiful moments of his different way of dealing with everyday life are told in a series of videos found on YouTube. In fact, Francesco has chosen (with great success) a video camera to paint the stories of his days in words and images and his idea full of energy to see the world.
Where do you think it will bring you all your restlessness?
I have no idea why I live for the day. I try never to think about the future and to live every day as the best ever. In my life I try to do only the things that I like and make me feel really good. Without programs, without strategies, without impositions.
Nice, but are you never afraid?
I try to be little tied to the classic fears of our time: work, money, money, work, career, health …
How do you do?
In the early years, mine was total unconsciousness. I had a hard time finding a solution. Now there is more awareness. I’m building a path, which is an unusual personal path of mine, different from everything else. My route is not going against the wind but not even being pushed by the mass without deciding, that is, following the route most people take: safe work, a daily journey from home to work. I don’t know where I’m going, let alone where I’m going. But the nice thing is that I don’t even ask myself.
Have you always been so sure of yourself?
Searching my way was not easy. I went through a long and difficult period in which I was worried, I asked myself questions without finding answers. Before finding your own road, your balance, if you go along unusual and little-traveled paths it is very easy to get lost. Today I am used to living with uncertainty. My way of facing life is to do it lightly. Which does not mean not responsibly, if anything otherwise.
So what’s your typical day like?
My life is very dependent on the period and revolves around sport. After the summer season at sea, I mainly dedicate myself to cycling and running, I try to train twice a day. And then I spend a lot of time making videos, writing and preparing content for my social channels and for the companies I work with. It is also the period in which I plan my trip: between January and February I take a month to visit some parts of the world. When I return, I dedicate myself to developing the material for the season. I make the boat coupons, check and fix the equipment and then in March the season starts again and everything becomes more challenging and a bit repetitive for me too.
How do you live, that is, how do you keep yourself?
My main activity is that of the ASD of which I am President, the Apnea Salento. I take care of courses and apnea courses. Since last year I have the support of Peperita, my sailboat, and many workshops I keep on board. Also, I do an important course from Y-40, I work with Omer trying out the equipment. I also happen to make the model for special scenes to do underwater and I also recently have the support of a sponsor, Lorenz Watch.
Your videos often tell stories. Not just your experiences. How did you get started?
Camcorder and videoreportage have always fascinated me since I was a kid. Today this passion has become part of my work. I have always felt the need to share some experiences and beautiful stories of people with others. I wanted to convey the joy of what I was experiencing to others. Also and above all to those I don’t know in the hope that they too could do the same.
How much have videos helped you increase your popularity?
The contents are always a value and so it is clear that if they like it they give it notoriety and like … I have always done everything driven only by passion. I don’t want to be handcuffed by the logic of numbers. I consider them a consequence of my work. For me the important thing is to pick up a camera and tell stories.
How do you define yourself?
I don’t like the idea of being labeled in a role. I’m a spearfisher, a traveler, a sportsman, a video maker and other things. I don’t have a specialization. They are like a liquid that can go everywhere.
Speaking of strange stories, how did you manage to get a sailboat as a gift?
It was a great fortune. Peperita, a 1978 Comet, had been on sale for over a year. The people who went to see it stopped in front of the many jobs they needed: electrical system, osmosis of the hull, sails to be redone, interiors to fix. She was full of aches and pains and despite the fact that the price continued to fall nobody wanted her. Until the owner decided to give it away and nobody wanted it anyway.
I saw her and fell in love with her. The people to whom I showed it advised against taking it, it would have been more convenient to buy a used one ready to sail. But some things cannot be explained: I wanted her. I have to say that the most beautiful things I did I did following my instinct that I trust blindly. I realized that people reason in a protective manner towards themselves and others and all this rationality kills the beauty and charm of instinct. Peperita needed 9 months of care and attention before returning to the sea. I repaired it when I had money to do it, without haste. There was more taste to do so. And then it must be said that I don’t like ready made and finished things.
I know you read a lot, what would you take to the sea for a long haul?
I don’t want to talk about the best books for me, but the ones that have remained the most impressed. These titles have marked a period, a passage. I call them “mythical”: The Baron Rampante by Italo Calvino, The silence of the sea by Sergio Bambaren, Oceano Mare by Alessandro Baricco. But above all I put the biography of St. Francis. A fantastic book that, on the other hand, has been of great help to me in a difficult period of my life.
Tell me about your other home, the one on land.
I grew up in Naples but I spent my childhood in Torre Suda with my beloved grandmother who was born here and had a home. Here I discovered the sea, I started swimming, I fell in love with water. I spent 3 months here in this country since I was one year old. Then I grew up, my grandmother passed away and I changed horizons. I was traveling, searching and experimenting because I didn’t understand what I wanted to do with my life. I had left my father’s job, I thought I was a bit mischievous. But Torre Suda had remained my important point of reference. Here I felt at home. Here I had to buy a house.
One year while I was doing the season working in a coral boat after a day at sea I saw the sign of a house for sale that was just 300 meters from where my beloved grandmother was born. I couldn’t resist. I didn’t have a project, a job, nothing. But I wanted that house. I met the owner who liked me, I had become like a grandson for her. The house had been abandoned for over 20 years. It had no connection to the sewer, electricity, water, or systems of any kind.
I guess you certainly didn’t stop at these details …
I bought 4 walls then I slowly fixed it. The way it has become a civilized and livable home is an adventure and a story like the ones I like. I lived here even in winter without fixtures or heating. I had put plastic bags instead of frames that I couldn’t afford to do … There was no light and in fact I had no end of candles scattered in every corner of the house. In winter I put the bed practically attached to the fireplace which worked 24 hours a day. I lived two wonderful years here living like a homeless person. Meanwhile, work progressed slowly. The house was a construction site, I remember that instead of the floor there was grass. Then one evening I met a carpenter without work, so by chance. We have become friends and is still one of my dear friends, he helped me. It was thanks to him that I could speed up the work and live there. Although it must be said that it took me 5 years to finish it as it is today. Of course I often traveled between Australia, the USA and Sardinia where I often stopped to help Umberto Pelizzari take the courses. Although I define myself as a homeless person, having a base camp was fundamental. After all even the nomads have a home, don’t they?