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The experience with Premio Energheia

_by Nisreen Naja, winner Lebanon Prize 2013th

matera1My experience with Premio Energheia is utterly unforgettable.
From the moment, I was informed that I won the first prize, to the minute I left Matera, everything was great and well-organized.

At first, I was scared and I didn’t know what to expect. But upon my arrival to the Bari Airport, I was welcomed by the President of the organization, the very nice Felice Lisanti, who took the time to drive all the way to the airport in order to pick me up.
Then, I settled in my hotel room, which was quiet unique. It was carved inside the mountains in a place called “Sassi Di Matera”, which represents the old part of the city. The view from outside the room was breathtaking. It feels like you are inside a movie set or in a fairytale.

There had been events organized for us: interviews with writers, book signings and others… They were all very interesting.
And as for the closing ceremony, everything was perfect and just the way I pictured it.

I have literally spent the best three days of my life in Matera.  The hospitality and the generosity of its people were heartwarming. And we were constantly invited to dinners and lunches. People opened their houses to welcome us and to make us feel at home.

I wish I could have spent more time there and I’d really like to go back some day.