Mauro Morandi Research Paper

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Italy launches petition to stop eviction of paradise islands hermit custodian

A petition has been launched to stop a Sardinian island from evicting a 77-year-old hermit who has lived there alone for 27 years while working to keep its footpaths and beaches clean.

Former PE teacher Mauro Morandi became the sole occupant of the island of Budelli, which is part of the iconic Maddalena archipelago, in 1989. Since then, Morandi's has spent his time maintaining the pristine island for the thousands of day-tripping tourists who visit each summer.

However, following the Italian state's recent acquisition of the island his permanence is thought to be under threat.

“I'm really worried the authorities will kick me off the island,” Morandi told Ansa last week.

“Previous owners had all promised me I could stay.”

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The island is world-famous for its 'pink beach' the sands of which owe their- distinctive hue from the tiny fragments of coral and shells.

Morandi originally came to Budelli after being employed as its caretaker by the Italian real estate company who owned the island. When the company stopped paying for his services 10 years ago, he decided to remain and maintain the island for free.

The 1.2 km2 island was controversially sold to a New Zealand businessman for €2.93 million in October 2013, but was acquired by the Italian state earlier this year after thousands of Italians protested about the island falling into foreign hands.

Morandi leaves the island only to visit his family in Ferrara each Christmas and sometimes takes his dinghy to a nearby port to stock up on essentials.

He has in the past told journalists he can't explain why he decided to live on the island and said he hopes to die on the island he has called home for 27
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