TOUR D'ITALIA - by David Mills - Slices of Life 1
My sister, Aneata, and Andrea, her husband, owned a hotel on the banks of Lake Campotosto, L'Aquila, in Italy. They had built it from the ground up; it had 110 rooms.
I had occasion to visit it for a vacation.
One problem was the location, as it stood just too far from the lake to be really accessible, a long walk indeed. While I was there, though, I befriended a labourer who had a beautiful 27-speed bicycle, and it was not long before I had asked if I may borrow it, to which he agreed.
One morning I set out on the bike for the lake, and having arrived I headed northward. I passed over a dam under which a river flowed, and soon was at the town, Campotosto, on the lake. I stopped at this pretty little settlement for breakfast, then continued along my course. I had a lot of experience with cycling, mostly in the demanding mountains of Wales, so the hilly terrain of Italy wasn’t a challenge, and I tootled along the main drag which had very little traffic and few built-up areas, on a beautiful day, not too hot as the route was quite high up in the mountains.
Eventually I arrived at a bridge that crossed the lake, so I took that until I found it put me back on the road I had been on before, so I crossed it back and resumed my circumnavigation of the lake.
After several hours I found myself back at the steep, uphill road to the hotel,
and forced my weary body to manage the couple of miles up to the hotel.
I slept like a baby that afternoon – wonderful invention the siesta – and
returned the bicycle to its owner.
This was my Tour d’Italia.