First and Last

Photo: Starting out from the cemetery next door.

First

It was the first ride since Marche entered the Orange Zone of Covid restrictions. In theory, as we are non resident, we don’t have a Comune to stay within. That wouldn’t be fair on our Italian friends so we’re staying within the limits, especially as yesterday we applied for our residency under the Withdrawal Agreement. We are not allowed to travel outside our Comune unless for medical, work or study reasons. We have none of these needs so we’re stuck inside the boundaries of a relatively small Comune. If you live in a Comune like Rome, Bologna, or even Fano you have a much bigger area to travel around.

Taking a leaf out of my Tours de London idea I tried to ride the boundaries of the Comune. It kind of works in a large city but in a rural areas the roads just don’t follow streams, fields and through people’s houses so the route doesn’t really look like the Comune boundary. It needs some refining as I ended up on some difficult gravel sections but at 31km and 432m of climbing it will be a nice little circuit when I’ve optimised it.

Last

It was my last ride on this frame. Just before the Giro di Muscoli it developed this crack on the top tube.

Bianchi agreed to replace it free of charge with their updated version, which is pretty good considering I have ridden 38,679km on her. She has taken me across the Alps from Geneva to Nice, Paris Brest Paris and the Giro di Muscoli. The new frame isn’t the same paint job but celeste nevertheless.

The good news is that the new frame arrived yesterday. The bad news is that the bike shop is in Fano, another Comune, so I’m not allowed to go there to get my new frame. The great news is that Stefano, the bike shop owner, happens to live in my Comune and he is allowed to cross the border because he is working. Tomorrow morning I will take the bike to his place, he’ll take it to the shop and swap over all the running gear onto the new frame and return it across the border so I can collect it tomorrow night. All very legal.

Here she is nearing the end of our time together. Just above the front light you can just about make out our house in the background, next to the cemetery.

Our final moment

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