Monday, 29 August 2011

Three Sides of The Runway

Brancaleone  -  Reggio di Calabria    69.3kms        557’ascent
If I never see the words Reggio di C again it will be too soon! It has been urging us on now for over 400 kms of hard graft. The cycling today has retained all the characterisitcs of the previous few days so I won’t gripe on any more about how challenging it has been. However, as always, the Italians have inspired comment.
We reached Reggio in good time as the journey wasn’t that long but then began our search for the port from which we planned to take the ferry for Sicily. Tootling along quite happily, our road suddenly and unexpectedly became a motorway and we were obliged to exit. Hm…. The sensible thing to do was to make for the sea and follow the coastline. After all a sea ferry must, by definition, require some sea. Downhill we went following narrow and winding streets until Alan stopped, “GPS says that the airport is ahead and there is no way through!” Bother and other such words sprang to mind. Back uphill we went to attempt to get around the airport. Hoorah; breathless, and exceedingly hot, we located our road. On track again (maybe). We stopped to buy drinks and asked the staff the way to the port. “ Keep on this road for thirteen kms.” Wrong port! We did keep on, and guess what?  the road turned into a motorway again and we had to exit stage left. Down the hill again. This time we were past the airport. GPS had given up hope, but Mr. Master Navigator kept his head and we eventually found the coast road and a sign for the port! We were, by now, a little jaded and decided to stay in Italy and take the ferry the next day. As we pushed the bikes and trailers into their own allocated bedroom, a very loud hiss emanated from Alan’s trailer wheel. A flat!  Mr. Fixit got to work and a little while later all was well.
We rounded off the day with a meal on the sea front. It was just like being on holiday! Lovely views, a soft warm wind and excellent fare. Here’s to tomorrow.

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