Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Cigarettes and Condoms

Falconara  -  Civitanova  Marche         76.1 kms           761’ ascent
No chance of a lie-in on this site as, despite the late hour finish of the karaoke, the site was alive by seven and me along with it. Sitting with our bowls of muesli and cups of tea, we were visited by some neighbouring campers and presented with fresh melon. How thoughtful people are. This was an Italian family who lived nearby. Both parents were young, obviously well- educated and spoke excellent English. He had a cycle repair business and they had cycled the relatively short distance to the camp site with two small children and another on the way. And we thought we were doing well.
Fed and watered, we were not sorry to leave the noise and bustle and looked forward to a good day’s cycling now that the dreaded hill was done with. I should remember my own adage; ‘just when you think all is going well, something disrupts the harmony.’ It was very hot but our road was wide and easy to follow until…………….. just about to cross a bridge, there appeared a ‘no entry ‘sign for bikes and low powered Vespas! We had only one other road available and that went very, very uphill. Bathed in sweat, we reached the top and turned to GPS for a miracle. None was forthcoming so we took a gamble. We followed road signs for a village which we hoped would eventually lead us back onto the correct path. It did, indeed, go in the right direction but the map hadn’t made clear the gain and loss of height! (Or of how steep the climbing would be)
Did I already mention it was VERY hot? We had filled every container we had with fluid, but we were using it at an alarming rate. It wouldn’t have been alarming had this been a normal day when all the cafes, bars and garages were open but today they were SHUT – every last one. By the beginning of the afternoon, we stopped at a closed garage which mercifully had a tap and a loo. We dined on the remains of some coconut cakes and shared an apple as we had been unable to top up supplies. (Remember next time you visit Italy that on August 15th, everything is closed. Oh, except for the cigarette and condom machines, neither of which make much of a meal.)
Rehydrated and cooler, we relocated our route and thought a short day might be in order and so began our search for R & R. Nothing! We were running parallel with the railway line beyond which lay the sea. As it was not readily accessed, places to stay were not a general requirement.  Nevertheless we were buoyed up by the thought that the holiday weekend finished today and many folk would have returned to their homes and generously, left some space for us. Civilisation eventually appeared and a room was procured not for one night but for two. It is the first rest day for a couple of weeks and my legs are really looking forward to this treat. (It is still very HOT)

1 comment:

  1. Hello again, my dears,
    Fancy going to Italy on 15th August! Anyway, there's a super recipe for Condom & ciggie pudding.If yoou want me to send it, just say and it's yours. Ideal for camping and long distance cycling; nourishing and a little unusual.A warning,though; it is chewy and it makes your breath smell like Beelzebub's bum.
    Ann, (& Punk)