October 18th - 26th 2002
Italy is fast. From the roads to the shopping aisles of the supermarkets were assailed by Italians rushing around. Happily we discovered after a few days that the mountain roads were quieter and headed up there. Ominously most roads have snow chain signs on them so while at the moment the sun is shining and the days are warm, sometimes hot, it can't last.
Another feature of Italy too cute to ignore is the hordes of inquisitive cats.
As we pedalled eastwards we could see te Alps in the distance. They remained visible for over a week and we could see not only the Alps where we'd crossed them, but further north too. At times they stretched along a quarter of the horizon.
Something we missed that could prove very usefully here was a blessing. There is a chapel in Magreglio, on the shore of Lake Como, about 50km north of Milan. This chapel is dedicated to Madonna del Ghisallo who is the patron saint of cyclists. There is a vending machine there selling pictures of her to tape to your handlebars to ward off Italian drivers.
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Italy cycling info