Today it should have been a short journey. However, since I spent the night in Bosa, I decided to stick to my route planning and start the day from Tinnura, passing through Modolo, Magomadas and Flussio … a deadly climb that I have already done several times!
I arrive in Suni and decide to go to see two archaeological sites outside the village, before visiting the centre. So I take the state road to Padria. The landscape is very bare and scorched by the heat.
I pass the rural church of San Narciso, built in honour of the saint who seventy years ago saved the community from an invasion of locusts, and continuing along the road I arrive at the Nuraghe Nuraddeo, 16 meters of main tower clearly visible from the road, with ramparts and the remains of three towers.
I continue further as the landscape get wilder, the more and more winding road passes through narrow rocky valleys, and on one of these steep slopes there is the domus de janas necropolis of Chirisconis.
I lock the bike and decide to climb over the closed gate (shhhh …) to get closer and see the individual tombs, carved into the rock. Once in the upper part, I enjoy a panorama where the slightest sign of human activity seems not appearing to sight.
The whole area is inhabited by rare griffons, and not far from here is the Pischina ‘e Paule pond, inhabited by numerous animal species.
Back to the village, I pedal along the two main streets, which form a right angle, full of significant murals such as the one depicting a knight during the San Pancrazio horse race, a festivity that takes place in May, and then I move on to the narrow streets of the historic centre.
The ancient doors and lintels highlight the history of these territories which I became aware of in the last month of travel. The Tiu Virgiliu house-museum is closed, but I have already seen many similar places, where hundreds if not thousands of ancient objects of life and crafts from a not too ancient past are kept.
I arrive at the parish church of San Pancrazio with a beautiful portal of sculpted red trachyte edges, and a short distance away I stop outside the church of Santa Maria della Neve, all in yellowish limestone.
On the other side, the wall of a house, made of dark basalt boulders, looks like the base of a nuraghe, and reminds me of this typical Sardinian historical scenario, the Christianity that overlaps with the pre-existing places of worship.
In front of the church, a belvedere overlooking the Modolo valley. I have almost completed the municipalities of this area, Planargia, and my gaze turns to the sea, with the awareness that this will be the last time before my arrival in Cagliari that I will be able to enjoy the view of this immense blue expanse.
SARDINIAN SHORT STORIES
Sardinian provinces. A bit of clarity for those who, like me, are not clear on the ever-changing historical-administrative framework of the Sardinia region.
Suni, like other neighbouring municipalities, is located today in the province of Oristano, from which capital it is about 70 kilometers away. But it hasn’t always been like this.
Until 2003, Suni was part of the province of Nuoro, in that strange strip of territory (for those, like me, who studied the geography of Sardinia at school in the 80s of the last century) which reached the western coast on the Sardinian Sea, breaking the ‘almost’ natural continuity between the northernmost province of Sassari and that of Oristano.
Perhaps also for this reason the ‘Nuorese’ were divided between those who went to the sea on the east coast, Orosei, Siniscola and those who preferred the west coast of Bosa and surroundings, about seventy kilometers from the capital Nuoro.
The four historic Sardinian provinces, Cagliari, Oristano, Sassari and Nuoro, seemed the most similar to the four historic ‘Giudicati’, Cagliari, Torres, Arborea and Gallura, despite the province of Nuoro seemed to be the only non-coincidence, an area that overlapped all four judges.
And even at the time of the Giudicati, Suni and the neighbouring villages passed from the Giudicato of Torres to that of Arborea, with transitional periods of jurisdiction of noble families such as the Malaspina.
A regional law of 2001 (made operational in 2005) added to the already existing provinces of Cagliari, Nuoro, Oristano and Sassari those of Olbia-Tempio, Ogliastra, Carbonia-Iglesias and Medio Campidano (all with double capital-towns…just to complicate things a little.) And it is in this period that Suni changed province.
With a regional law of 2016, following a referendum, we return to a situation similar to the previous one: today the Sardinian provinces are Nuoro, Oristano, Sassari and South Sardinia, with the addition of the Metropolitan City of Cagliari. Suni remains in the province of Oristano. How long for we are not allowed to know.