ili kupata uhakika. Watu wengi wameharibiwa maisha yao kwa majibu ambayo yalikuwa si ya kweli ~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+ Italian man returns from woodland exile after HIV 'mistake' Tom Kington in Rome Wednesday August 8, 2007 The Guardian Alberto Zabbialini dropped into an internet cafe on Sunday and did what millions do at their computers every day, idly keying his name into a search engine. But the 28-year-old mechanic had more reason than most to be curious after he had fled his home three months earlier in a suicidal mood to carve out a hermit's life on berries and river water in the Ligurian woods, driven by the belief he had contracted HIV. What he found online was shocking: reams of articles about him pointing out medical tests he had taken actually showed he was in perfect health, desperate appeals from his family and from celebrities to come home, and news of a police dragnet which gripped Italy's attention. "Is this true I'm not ill? Don't lie to me," were his first words when he rang his mother Francesca from a call box. "I said to him 10 times, 'I swear, you're fine, just come home,'" she told journalists and camera crews crowding her doorstep on Monday as she hugged tightly the pale, thin son she had almost given up for dead. Shorn of the long beard he was sporting when he arrived back in the hamlet of Castrezzone di Muscoline near Lake Garda, Alberto was tight-lipped as to whether fear, shame or embarrassment had driven him into the hills. What is known is that he underwent a series of medical tests after feeling unwell on his return from a foreign holiday earlier this year. Whether he misread the results or was initially misdiagnosed is unclear, but he panicked and took off on his moped on May 10, stopping only to phone his parents to tell them to "take care" of his girlfriend, Simona. With 1,000 (£680) in his pocket and his mobile phone switched off, Alberto abandoned his moped 140 miles from home in Vado Ligure, where it was later found by police, before marching into the sparsely inhabited wooded slopes running down to the Mediterranean west of Genoa. "For the first month I ate what I could find, figs and cherries," said Alberto, adding that he had drunk stream water and slept on a bed of leaves and branches. At one point he heard his uncle roaming the woods and yelling through a megaphone that the tests had put him in the clear. "But it was the first days and I thought he was lying so I hid myself. I wanted to end it." By this time a national police manhunt was under way and Gianluigi Buffon, goalkeeper at Alberto's favourite football team Juventus had published a personal appeal in the pages of sports daily La Gazzetta dello Sport for Alberto to come home. Alberto's doctor also published his mobile phone number, urging Alberto to call in. "It was just a mundane infection," said the doctor. "The worst day was when I was called to identify a corpse found in those woods," said his father, Angelo. An autopsy later showed the body to be that of a missing pensioner. Asked why he was so pale after his outdoor sojourn, Alberto said he had stayed under cover of the woods, venturing out only when he discovered a path leading to a motorway service station where he purchased sandwiches without once being recognised. Three months on and 10kg lighter, Alberto's curiosity to know what the world was saying about him won out. "I came down from my wood to an internet point, put in my name and clicked to find a stream of articles which said I was not ill. At 8pm I called home to find out the truth." Cast by the Italian media as an all-Italian family boy plagued by angst, Alberto lived up to his role on Monday, smiling as his mother kissed him after a celebratory roast chicken dinner at the family house he still lives in. "When you leave you turn your back, and that is easy," said his father, who employs Alberto in a local car workshop. "But when you return you need to show your face, and that is much more difficult. Alberto managed this and that makes me proud of him," he said. "Us Zabbialinis are capable of eating a lion, but in the face of illness ..."