26 Ott Professional life
Then came my working experience. First at the University of Turin, after graduating in medicine, and then three years in London at the Hammersmith Hospital, before returning to Turin. We had a working sabbatical year with the family in New York and then settled in Rome. All of the above intermingled with a multitude of trips for work that have further expanded the pleasure of getting acquainted with the world and with so many different cultures. One example of the many was the invitation I received in the early eighties to go to China to give a series of lectures. Not easy to organize in those days, but in 1985 I managed to go with Rita, shortly after our marriage. A month in China in that year and the opportunity to visit different regions was indeed a unique and unforgettable professional and photographic experience (and that later materialized in China 1985), probably impossible those days if not through my profession.
And this has continued. In these numerous years I have travelled in all continents. My work has certainly been a bonus from that perspective – a further opportunity; from many countries in South America, to North America innumerous times, Canada, China many times after 1985, Japan, Taiwan, more or less everywhere in Europe, including Eastern Europe, Baltic states, Russia, Middle East, Israel, the Gulf region many times, Iran, South Africa, Egypt, India, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Armenia… A lot has come because of my long-term liaison and roles with the European Hematology Association (EHA) – from President, to Chairman of the Education Committee and of the Outreach Unit. Over the years we have signed many MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with different countries: Japan, India, China, Taiwan, Russia, Turkey… Further opportunities to travel and get acquainted with places and people.
Through the Institute in Rome we have had close working and education links with Iraq and Kurdistan, countries I have not yet visited but with which the liaison has been in place for years.
With little doubt the professional life can become an opportunity that extend far beyond the work itself. I always carry with a small camera to memorize places and people.