Confra (the ‘Brotherhood of the Gecko’)

(The original post is here, in Italian)

I met all of them years ago, when I started my MBA class, in Milan. It was the end of 2003.

One year later Confraternita del Geco (Brotherhood of the Gecko, also called Confra) was created by 8 brave MBA students. One (not so brave) left – was forced to leave? – a couple of years later. The 7 left established a solid friendship. A ‘statute’ was created. It was decided to celebrate the Brotherhood with a dinner, every third Wednesday of the month (Gecocena, the Gecko-dinner), each time in a different osteria in Milan, organised by a different member of the brotherhood – il Grangeco. A couple of them opened the first sushi factory in Italy. Then, a WhatsApp group was created – Confra members definitely mastered the latest technologies (including the fax). One of the members started traveling around the globe with the goal of putting his feet on every single country on the planet (including North Korea and Mongolia), another guy became passionate about Northern European beers, another one about global conferences and stages.

Confra members used to travel together – Spain, London, Amsterdam. In 2013 Confra celebrated in London 10 years of friendship. Then I moved to the UK and other members moved to more exotic places (Monza, Florence). The few remaining in Milan got silent for long long time.

17 years later, Confraternita is still alive – well, not properly kicking, a bit sick, but still alive. We barely meet each other; the WhatsApp group is still in use – the only shared activity last.

So, is this the end? Is it really the end of the heroic Confra? No, it’s not. I can still feel the spirit of Confra hovering over my head. Because Confra never dies, it’s part of life, it’s part of you, as Hooverphonics are used to sing (was it Anger instead?).

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