Les Invalides arrived to Turin

Napoleon Crossing the Alps - Charlottenburg Version

You will have to excuse us. The last week was kind of over-demand­ing. We cycled day and night, we ate quite the min­im­um, we slept in the floor, in the most mar­vel­lous grass that rendered every oth­er grass un-tent-able, we crossed the Alps, we broke per­son­al speed records, we got a Crash Course Italian Culture, and we got sick. Specially me. Let me summarise.

Directed by my Alpine com­mand­ment, Luca sug­gest­ing The Great Saint Bernard, and cyc­ling fast for the good weath­er, we arrived to Martigny on Saturday night and camped in that mar­vel­lous grass we’ll nev­er for­get: hear­ings drove in unbeat­able, we built the tent in 6′21″, and took it down in 4′00″.

Early depart on Sunday, put some extra air on my tires for less fric­tion res­ist­ance, and start the climb. The way up took us sev­en hours, lunch-break included – mus­tard-fish kebab –, climb­ing 2000m all straight. After the divi­sion between the pass and the tun­nel, where half of the cars took the lat­ter, the hard­est road star­ted. All curves, huge inclin­a­tion, over tree-level, and awe­some alpine streams of water to drink from. There, my motiv­a­tion skyrocketed.

Listening to Cuban Rumba all the way up, with my smal­lest gears all the time, I left an exhausted Leon behind, and went up dan­cing on the bike and salut­ing all drivers. At my arrival to the top, plenty of them just applauded. Leon arrived half an hour after.

The Italian mountains of the Gd-St-Bernard - Les Invalides

The way down was my part. Leon depar­ted first, I changed clothes to the most aero­dy­nam­ic things I had on my bags, tightened my SPD shoes, and went down with all my heart. My GoPro on the hel­met is a wit­ness of how many cars I just sur­passed. Quick sprint, hard break before the dan­ger­ous curves, anoth­er quick sprint. I passed the 70km/h in almost every sprint – finally break­ing that old record of the Brocken –, and one of them, just a bit after tree level, got me to 78’12km/h, a record that now I’m not look­ing for­ward to break again. For now.

To Aosta we arrive just to sleep in a camp site; I saved noth­ing of myself for later, I com­pletely burned by body in the Pass. The day after, a com­pletely dead me could only revive his mind with a shot of Italian caffè: in one day, I did all the quint­es­sen­tial Italian things: Caffè, Pasta, Pizza, and Ice-Cream. I could write a blog itself about cof­fee in the world, and I’m finally in my dreamed coun­try on that matter.

And in Parella, regard­less of Leon’s sun­burn and my stom­ach dis­ease that got me throw­ing up a whole night, we got the rest of our Italian Introduction: a whole fam­ily of very talk­at­ive and loud people whose biggest chunk of expressiv­ity is in their hands, offer­ing home-made Pasta and Limoncello. And Raviolis. And Grappa. Oh, and applaud­ing to who­ever fin­ished the whole plates. I’m gonna love this.

PS: now dear read­er, why that fea­ture pic­ture on the post? Looking for­ward for your comments!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.