Into Italia

27 08 2010

I am getting seriously behind in my posts. Things are happening, but I’m not getting much internet access, nor am I giving myself time to write. There’s only so much you can do in a day.

But I couldn’t let this pass.

I picked my route across the Alps and into Italy a few days ago by looking at the map and finding the highest pass I could see, Col Agnel. By luck I think I also picked the prettiest. So this morning I lugged all my gear up and over the Alps. Along with lots of roadies (who all overtook me). Some of them had things to say (like my new friend Pascal who rode with me for maybe an hour), but I felt like a celebrity at the top. Lots of people saying “bon courage!” – even I could understand that. And fair enough too, it was 2744m high. I didn’t feel tired until later I discovered I could hardly move my legs.

Luckily there was a whole lot of down for a while, in fact I definitely didn’t pedal to my new high score of 72km/h – that was trying to keep things under control. I can only imagine what the Tour de France riders get up to (they came this way 4 years ago – I could still read the paint on the road, including “Allez Evans!”)

I was exhausted, but found a second wind and rode into Fossano, well out of the Alps. Rode around in circles looking for somewhere to stay, and then just rode on. This is clearly not tourist country, there was nothing. I found a restaurant in the middle of no-where and had some pasta, but they didn’t know where I could stay. Out of water, out of daylight and in a tiny place, I asked a family if they knew where I could find a campsite. They must have taken pity on me, because I was offered the spare room in the garage. Once they heard my story, they wanted to hear more and for the second time in the day I felt like a celebrity. I was brought into have dinner (second dinner!) and we talked for some time. All in English, of course, my Italian needs some work. Amazing how kind some people can be to strangers.

I think Mario was most impressed, he managed to round-up some friends and we timidly chatted for a while, before they went out. I should have got a photo of everyone so I could put it here. Maybe Mario can send me one for the blog (I know he’ll read this!)

Thank you for your hospitality Lucia, Mario and Anna! Gracie!


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2 responses

27 08 2010
Marengo Lucia

ciao! Obviously we have read your blog this afternoon…! I want only say you that for my family has been a really pleasure have a guest as you in our house and with us for dinner.. hear your history has been for all something of exceptional! we have speak of you at many people today you are a star in Roreto (our village).. We continue to follow you with your blog and we hope to meet you personally again! happy have meet you!and always welcome in our home… wish for all! i hope you understand my miserable english! ps we will send you photos as soon as possible

20 11 2010
Steve

And it was very lucky for me to have met you! Thank you very much for sharing your life with me for a day!

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