A family living together in a small Northern Italian city: the parents are Giovanni and Paola and their two teenage children are Irene and Andrea. Giovanni is a psychoanalyst and in his office patients confide to him a long list of their neuroses and worries, in contrast to the calm of his own existence. Giovanni's life is regulated by a familiar pattern of routines and interests: walking, reading, listening to music. One Sunday morning, Giovanni suggests that he and his son enjoy a run together, but he is urgently called away to see a patient. He cannot go running with his son, and Andrea leaves to go diving with his friends. This leads to an event that changes the family's lives forever.