Category: Cycling

Milano-SanRemo from the Poggio

The drive south was uneventful, using the lesser road rather than the paege.  We arrived at the Poggio on Thursday and got a good spot in the far corner of the parking area at the top.

The house right below now has a Ukrainian flag painted on it’s roof.

Friday was very quiet for us – late start, cappuccinos at the cafe, then lunch at one of the bars.  I ordered the ‘wild boar hamburger’, expecting, as the name said, a burger.  But no – it was a meat patty with nothing else.  Very tasty, but not, in my mind, a burger.  

There was a local club of older riders that stopped for coffee – they kindly posed for a photo…

Race day was sunny but very windy.  We had another cappuccino at the bar, and made a reservation for lunch later – they were already setting up extra tables and had at least three times the staff on.

This time we both ordered the lasagna, although they were mostly pushing out pizzas.  I couldn’t believe how busy it was – must be their busiest day of the year.

We knew we had time but left the bar early so as not to have to rush.  Leaving Henry in the campervan we walked down to stake out our spots – really wished that I’d worn my warmer winter coat rather than the lighter black jacket.  The wind was fierce – I also wished I had my wool hat and gloves!

In any case the race arrived in due course – a fellow near me had it on his phone and we were well warned when the riders were near as the crowd went wild!  Actually it was one of the best crowds I can remember – very boisterous and all happy.  There was one table of ladies – with a bottle of wine – overlooking the road and every time the overly officious fellow on the road below blew his whistle at someone they called him out – it was hilarious.

To great cheers the first one over the top and around the corner was Van der Poel…

…followed seconds later by Pogacar, Ganna and Van Aert…

A few minutes later, while still watching the rest of the race go by, I heard the crowd inside the bar screaming and cheering as they watched the end on tv.

When we got back to the campervan we watched the last 15 km on GCN and were both very pleased to see that Van der Poel had such a convincing win – the most dominating performance in many years.

I did see myself on tv – a black blob on the very right of the screen just at the turn after the top of the Poggio.

North to Avigliana and Milano-Torino

Upon leaving Trasimeno we went west a bit and stopped for a visit with Colin’s estate agent to update the offering of the house in Papiano.  The agent and her partner have a large, old house on a hill with a lovely swimming pool and fantastic views of the valley below.

Afterwards we continued west a bit before turning north towards our destination just outside Torino that we chose to watch the next race from.

We made it just past Genova and a bit up the highway north when we encountered major roadworks and traffic slowdown.  As it was getting late anyways we left the highway and pulled into the town of Masone that was supposed to have a couple of aires.  We found the quieter one and parked up for the night.

In the morning we had a quick cup of tea then proceeded north via the smaller road rather than the motorway.  It was a very nice, pleasant drive – we had to stop several times at rail crossings to let a train pass.  It was a passenger train that stopped at all of the small towns along the way and we kept overtaking it, then having to wait for it to pass at the crossings.

Having picked the town of Avigliana we were very pleasantly surprised – the town itself was alright but it’s the area in general that impressed us.  On the map it looks to be surrounded by motorways and seemed like it might be very congested but it wasn’t.

We passed through the town and stopped on the edge at a restaurant right on one of the ‘lakes’ – there are two of them, one being Lago Grande di Avigliana, and the other Lago Piccolo di Avigliana (big lake and small lake).  To me they were more like fair-sized ponds, but never-the-less they reminded me greatly of home and I loved it there.

Lunch was wonderful – I had wild boar stew with polenta and a side of grilled veggies.  The boar meat was so tender and flavourful and the sauce was both sweet and savory – just delicious.  It’s one of the few times I actually finished a meal instead of taking half of it home for later.

After lunch we drove just a bit further along the route and found a large paved parking area right on the smaller of the lakes.  There were walking and riding paths and many folks were out with their dogs.

There was also a nice little bar that served a good local red wine.  Sitting in the sun on the shore of a lake, beautiful mountains as a backdrop and sipping red wine – almost heaven!

The wind howled and rocked the campervan most of the night but we were snug and I slept well.

Race day was sunny and beautiful, with the wind having died down early in the morning.

We took Henry for a short walk, then had a cappuccino at the bar on the lake.

Milano-Torino is the oldest race in cycling, with the first edition being in 1876!  We were very close to the finish – maybe 15 km or less – and when the race arrived the breakaway of four was about to be caught.

The whole race passed us so quickly I barely got 25 shots even in sports mode.

As per usual now we watched the finish on GCN, and one of the riders from new pro team Tudor won!  The team was started only four years ago and is now owned by retired Swiss great Fabian Cancellara – the main sponsor is Swiss watch-maker Tudor.  They’re not a World Tour team yet but do get invites and this was their first ever win at the top level – kudos to them.

After we’d watched the finish and they’d opened the barriers we got going the short distance down to Pinerolo where we stopped at the quiet aire for the night.

TirrenoAdriatico – Offagna

Shortly after the fifth TA stage had passed we took off from Gualdo and headed northeast towards Osimo.  They cover about 85 km from the south before starting a large circuit where they go through each place three times.

It was starting to get dark as we approached the town of Offagna when we saw our Belgian friend’s bus and another campervan in a field, but when we pulled in the campervan guy came out and told us that the owner was not accepting any more campers.

We continued on to the town and a bit further, pulling into a very large area just off the road where we stopped for the night.  It had gone very quickly from dusk to dark and we didn’t want to get too far off the route.

In the morning we went the couple of km back to the town and almost immediately pulled into a nice large area just down from a sharp corner on the route.

Having some time we enjoyed yet another excellent cappuccino at a cafe right across the road, then explored the town a bit.

The town is dominated by a 15th century castle, and there are many interesting and slightly odd artworks around the upper old section.

The coffee shop was doing a good business as people gathered for the race.

Each circuit took about 50 minutes for the racers to cover and each time they passed they were more spread out.  The first time they passed the first and last riders were only 3 or 4 minutes apart but on the last circuit they were over 16 minutes.

There was initially a small breakaway followed shortly by the entire Jumbo team keeping Roglic safe at the front of the peloton.

Van der Poel was in the middle, but faded as the race progressed.

Cavendish and Sagan were there too, but several minutes behind.

Once again we watched the end on GCN then, having opted to not go to San Benedetto del Toronto for the final stage we booted it back to Trevi, arriving in the dark but happy to have made it all the way.

The next day was a nice drive back to Papiano, taking the back roads from Foligno again.  As it was Sunday, which is ‘visiting your relatives’ day in Italy there was nowhere to park near the house so we made the decision to try to turn around down a small road near the bell tower.  This turned out to be a very foolish choice as the road was quite steep and the turning area a bit small.  After spinning out trying to back up the hill we parked for a bit, and I walked down and across up a farm road.  Around the corner at the top I encountered a very friendly woman, Monica, who was busy pruning her olive trees. She spoke a bit of English, and understood that we were stuck – she said she would call her husband to bring his tractor to pull us back up.  The main question she had for us was ‘why???’ – good question!

We went back to wait for the husband when Colin gave it one more try to get out ourselves, and thankfully, after much spinning and smoking of the front right tire, actually made it!  I went back to Monica to let her know we were ok, then headed to the house – much relieved, but feeling very stupid.

We did two loads of laundry, and each had a hot shower – very nice after so long roughing it.

On our way out of Papiano we did, of course, stop at the bar to have a quick drink and say goodbye to Antonio – he was very sad, as we likely won’t be back in the area until maybe next year.

The drive to Trasimeno and the aire on the lake didn’t take too long and we settled in for an early night.

More TirrenoAdriatico

Trasimeno was particularly lovely in the morning sun the next day.

We had another delicious cappuccino at the same place we stopped at a few days ago and then began to follow the route markers for the day’s stage.  They passed right through Pila – where our hairdresser/barber has his shop – and we went all the way to the edge of Foligno.  The drive was all on the back roads and the whole area was very beautiful.

We parked in a large parking lot right outside a cafe and got a bite to eat, then settled in to wait for the race – we were just over 4 km from the finish.

The race passed by in no time – they were really moving.

We got back into the campervan in time to watch the end on GCN on my ipad, then headed up the road to the aire in Trevi for another nice quiet night.

Our next destination was for Friday’s summit finish at Sasso Tetto, passing through the town of Sarnano along the way.  However upon arriving we changed our minds – it was so windy up top we were wondering if we were going to get blown right off the mountain.

We did stop to make chicken in curry sauce with rice for lunch, then spoke with some fellows that had stopped a bit further down.  They told us that the race didn’t actually go to the large hotel but rather up another road where the ‘memorial to Scarponi’ was.

We drove up the other road to have a look – fairly desolate and again very very windy.

I got out and braved the wind long enough to take a few photos then we went back down through Sarnano and back along the route to the town of Gualdo.

Finding a nice flat wide spot just outside the town we pulled in for the night, being joined by the very large bus with the Belgian couple.  We’ve met them several times now, most recently at last year’s Lombardia.

The next morning we went into the village for cappuccino before deciding that we would watch the race from right in the town rather than down the road where we’d spent the night.  An observation:  I don’t think it’s possible to get a bad cappuccino in Italy – even though the coffee brand is often different it’s always excellent – too bad the roads weren’t as superior.

It was far too windy to put the flags up, and they even took the ‘King of the Mountains’ banner down to prevent it from blowing away or coming down on the riders.  There was still the painted line on the road but it’s not nearly as impressive.

The race was a little late arriving – the wind might be ok when it’s at your back but the fierce headwind going up the mountain could not have been fun.

It took a lot longer for the race to pass this time, and once again we watched the end on GCN – they’d shortened the course by a couple of km due to the wind at the top.  It was a very exciting finish with a sizeable group actually sprinting up the slope of the very hard climb and Roglic coming out the winner.


We took our flags down and drove back to Asciano to spend the night at the aire/sosta.  They’ve put up a nice new fence that borders the field next door.

The next morning we got going at a decent time and headed towards our next destination of Lido di Camaiore for the first stage of Tirreno-Adriatico.  We needed to get past Siena, which turned out to be a bit of a challenge.

We got halfway to Siena when we were stopped by a backup of vehicles.  Wondering if there had been an accident – we could see a police car – I got out and walked to the spot and discovered that the road was closed due to a sportif.  None of the police there spoke english but my italian is still good enough that I understood it would be about an hour before the road opened again.

Like many other vehicles we turned around and looked for an alternate route.  Once again, however, we were stopped.  This time one of the traffic wardens spoke good english and was super friendly.  We patiently waited about half an hour until the bulk of the sportif had passed, then were allowed to go on our way.

Skirting Siena we made our way to Lido di Camaiore and were once again thwarted in our objectives.  First of all we couldn’t find a service station that had gpl (for our gas stove) and actual service on a Sunday.  Hoping we at least had enough to boil water for tea in the morning we went to the parking area beside the Hotel Joseph where we’d stayed before.

We’re not sure why but the whole parking area was blocked off – on one end by race buses, and the other by a barrier with a couple of campervans in front of it.  We drove a short way and parked for the night outside a local soccer stadium.  Many cars during the night gave friendly ‘glad you’re here’ honks to welcome us – not!

It poured rain off and on all night long, and in the morning we decided to skip the initial ITT and go to a spot along the route of the second stage for the next day.

We chose a small town on one of the climbs – Castellina Marittima – and drove a couple of km past where we found a nice wide fairly flat spot with a wonderful view of the plain below and the sea in the distance.

In the morning after breakfast we took a walk back down into the town and had a lovely cappuccino.

Walking back up to the campervan we decided we were not in the perfect spot for the race and drove back to the edge of the town to watch from.

There was a breakaway of five, followed about 2 ½ minutes later by the entire peloton…

Alaphilippe was up near the front, and one of his teammates threw his bidon right at us – score!  I got photos of Michael Woods in the bunch…

…as well as Cavendish…

Shortly after the race passed we headed back to the aire/sosta on the shores of Trasimeno, passing through some very beautiful Tuscan countryside on the way.

Back to Travel and Watching the Races!

A near panic situation at the start of my current journey – at 4:45 in the morning the car wouldn’t start!  Turns out I likely left the inside light on the day before when I went to the store and overnight and it killed the battery.  My little Sly guy would have been happy if I hadn’t been able to leave – he’d taken to sitting in my suitcase as if I could take him with me (I wish I could!).

A frantic call to a local cab company and they arrived in only 3 minutes to race me to the airport for my first flight.  Second flight left almost on time after de-icing, and I got to spend a few very boring hours in Toronto airport.

We boarded on time, then spent another very boring two hours before leaving – I watched a whole movie.  We had to wait for the catering van to load food – the first one had broken down and they had to send another one or else we would starve.  Then we had to de-ice before taking off.

As usual I didn’t really sleep at all, even though the plane was barely half full and I had some room to stretch out a bit.  Watched another couple of movies, then the first few episodes of ‘White Lotus’.

We arrived in Rome over 1 ½ hours late – passport control was all automatic and no one cared.  Colin was waiting right outside the exit door and off we went.  We stopped just outside Trevi at a nice sosta for the night.

The next morning we passed through Papiano to say hello to Antonio, then continued on to Monte Buono where we had a nice lunch at our favourite restaurant there.  We then went just a little further to the town of San Feliciano where we found a lovely sosta right on the shores of Lago Trasimeno.

We went to Pila the next morning so I could get my hair cut by my Italian barber, stopping along the way at Mugnano for a very nice cappuccino.  After my perfect haircut we headed to Marsciano to visit the phone shop and arrange service so I could get good reliable wi-fi in the campervan.  We got a SIM card that was supposed to have very good capabilities but would take a few hours to ‘become active’.  We went back to the nice spot on the lake and waited, but alas the service never kicked in.

We tried and tried and got very frustrated before giving up, deciding that nothing we were doing was actually going to make it work.

The next morning we returned to the phone place in Marsciano and when even our friend there couldn’t make it work he ‘cloned’ the SIM card and told us again that it would take a few hours to become active.  We chose to go a few miles out of town towards San Venanzo where we pulled into a large parking area and had a bite to eat.

After the local three hour lunch period we returned to the phone place and eventually our friend solved the problem after shutting down and re-starting our mobile router several times with the SIM card in it – yes!!

We then got on the road to one of the ‘Strade Bianche’ sections just outside Asciano – the same place we’ve seen the race from two or three times over the past few years.  There was already one campervan there – from Switzerland – then another couple arrived, both of which were from Italy.

We had a nice quiet night and got up to a sunny, although slightly breezy race-day morning.

We had a good idea when the race was going to arrive – both by watching the GCN coverage on my ipad, as well as the progress of the helis and fore-running vehicles.

The race was neither very dusty nor very muddy.  There had been rain a couple of days before and it had dried out just enough to not be muddy, but not yet dusty.  Good for the riders but not so much for the typical conditions that they are famed for.

I did get a good shot of Alaphillipe and Van der Poel… and also Sagan…

After they had all passed we watched the end of the race on GCN – not really pleased with the finish.  Tom Pidcock from team Evil (ooops – sorry! – Team Ineos) won and the rest raced for second – bunch of losers!  I felt like sicking the dog on them!

Actually the dog in the campervan next door to us was very nice and still a bit of a puppy so not sure if he would have gone after anyone – but they do deserve a bit of a bite in the ass!

Il Lombardia From Ghisallo – One of my Favourite Races, and Two of my Favourites Retiring

The next morning we had a nice chat with the Belgians before they re-located.  I saw that they’d moved to a flat area just below the museum and church – there’s a fairly steep bluff and you look right down on it from above.  Their new bus is too large to go right in but there was just enough space for them along the side near the entrance.

We thought it looked perfect so drove on down – the gate barrier blocked the way, but right then a motorcyclist arrived and the arm raised so we carried on in.  After parking I took Mo for a little walk and the Belgians told me they got permission from the folks at the museum to park where they did and maybe I should check with them too.  I walked up and was told that we had to leave for the day but if we came back before they closed at 5:30 we could spend the next two nights there – awesome!

We had a lovely cappuccino at the cafe next to the museum, then spent much of the day a bit south at the town of Canzo.

Back at the museum just before closing they gave me a key-fob for the gate and as soon as we were in I hiked up to return it to them – it was their last one so we couldn’t keep it.  They didn’t want to see any passports, nor did they want any money – perfect spot and free to boot!

Race day morning was beautiful – clear sunny sky but not too hot.  We had another delicious cappuccino then walked around the town a bit.

Slowly but surely fans were arriving, and I even saw some folks having their wedding photos taken amidst all of the cycling fans on the bluff above us.

We met and had a chat with a couple of Americans who had rented bikes in Bellagio and weren’t aware that there was a big race happening – we encouraged them to stay and watch it rather than continue on their ride.

Mo and I took a walk down to find ‘Dutch corner’ but didn’t make it past ‘Pantani corner’.

The folks there insisted that I have some wine – did I say no? – as well as a delicious beef rib and some lovely cheese.  Mo got a rib bone and I almost lost a finger trying to get it away from her when we had to leave.

We made it back in plenty of time, and saw that the Americans had taken our advice and settled in to watch the race not far up from us.

One of the Israel Premier Tech support cars had pulled in and I had a little talk with the soigneur – it’s very sad that the team is likely going to be relegated at the end of the year but he said they’ll keep on racing.  Michael Woods is in the race so of course I hope to see him.  The soigneur promised me a bidon if he has any left after the racers are past.

I’m not usually a huge fan of kids, but I do like to see them get so excited at races like this – these two especially were so cute:

The race arrived led by Team UAE and last year’s winner Tadej Pogacar, in front of a group that included Tour de France winner Jonas Vingegaard, as well as Vincenzo Nibali and Alejandro Valverdere – both of whom are retiring and that makes me very sad.

After the race passed I was fortunate a couple of times – the Israel Premier Tech guy remembered me and gave me a bidon, and I also scored one from Quickstep as our Belgian friends are associated with them.

As the crowd dispersed in the usual lightening-quick fashion we returned to the campervan to watch the end of the race on GCN – Pogacar won again in a sprint with one other rider.  An excellent final race of the season for us.

Milano-San Remo – La Primavera…from Poggio!

After a nice shower and a bit of breakfast we continued on south.  Since we weren’t in a rush we took the ‘scenic route’ rather than the peage/motorway.

Part of the drive was quite nice but part was a bit drab – narrow winding valleys and not much greenery on the trees yet.  Also the gravel works on the river weren’t that attractive.

Making it to Imperia right at noon we took the coast road west along the Sea until turning off to go up to Poggio.

The car park at the top was pretty full but we managed to find the perfect spot – right near the fence and overlooking the Sea.

It was very windy so we didn’t spend much time outside, although I did take Mo for a short walk after lunch.  We also went to the cafe/bar a little later for a quick drink.

The bar is right at the corner where the riders will come from the crest of the climb, make a sharp left and start the descent to San Remo – we’ve watched the race from near that spot twice now, staying in the same car park overlooking it.

Race day was overcast but somewhat less windy.  There are only a few other campervans in the car park with us but it’s almost full – most of the cars were there yesterday so we assume the owners must live nearby and just leave their cars all the time.

Going early to the cafe we had a nice cappuccino, then a stroll through the town.

A couple of hours later another cappuccino, this time followed by a walk across the road to the wine store – the one with the taps coming out of the walls.  I opted for a ‘bag-in-box’ red that the lady said was dry and a bit rich but very good.

Partway through the morning many of the barriers were already up and the officious fellow with the whistle was already directing people here, there and everywhere.  Many amateur riders have been coming up, and there are definitely more folks around than the last time we were here – the 2020 race that was delayed to August because of the covid.

Since crowds were gathering we walked down to stake our spots fairly early, knowing we’d have an hour and a half or more wait.  I stopped at the very same spot as I did in 2020, and Colin continued down just past the next corner.

I saw a Bianchi bike above me and wondered if it belonged to a former Jumbo team rider as it had Jumbo Visma on the cross-bar.

I made friends with both the ‘official’ guy and the policeman that was nearest me.  Lots of folks were still coming up from places below and they eventually tied a rope across the opening I was sitting at.

The policeman made sure no one got in front of me, and ended up standing just down from my right shoulder.

I kept asking the official guy how long until the racers arrived and he gave me updates – they were way ahead of schedule because of a fierce tailwind.

The first rider passed at 4:37, followed closely by Pogacar, van der Poel, van Aert and Mohoric, with the peloton right behind.

Because it’s a sharp corner the riders lean into it and swing very wide to my side of the road.

By the time the last racer passed about 20 minutes later the race was long over in San Remo.  It was a sprint to the finish with Matej Mohoric coming out on top.

We tried to get into the bar to see any replays but it was so packed we didn’t bother until later when we were almost the only ones there enjoying a refreshing beverage.

Milano-Torino from San Martino Canavese

We placed our chairs at the side of the road just across from a campervan with a couple of very annoying barking dogs – ok it was ours.  The race approached at the early end of the predicted time.

As the official vehicles and motos just in front of the riders rounded the curve below us I saw a black car in one of the driveways start to move forward.  The fucking idiot partially entered the road and the nearest official car had to swerve to avoid broadsiding him, meaning that the moto nearest to that car had to swerve also.  If not for the excellent handling skills of the moto driver I would have been flattened by a skidding motorcycle.

I just sat there screaming obsenities as the first racers passed, having seen what had happened right in front of them, with the front end of the black car on the road.  There was a breakaway of three, followed in about two minutes by the whole peloton.

The driver of the black car that almost caused carnage stood beside his vehicle looking totally bewildered, having finally backed up into his driveway a bit out of the way because of all the oncoming traffic.

How can you possibly not be aware that a World Tour Race is coming through your town?  The oldest Classic there is – 103 years now!  There are signs everywhere about no parking and pink arrows and everything – how can you be that dumb?  In addition to being furious I was also extremely relieved that I hadn’t been crushed by a moto – what an asshole.

Shortly after the race had passed an ambulance roared by with lights flashing and siren on – a rider must have crashed on the downhill not long after going by us.  We hope he’s ok. 

We watched the end of the race on Colin’s phone – Cavendish won!  The first Brit ever in 103 editions – good for him!

We stayed at the roadside spot for awhile, moving later back to the place we’d spent the previous night (across from the cemetery).  I read in bed until I finished the book I was reading about the Roman legions and had another very early night, with Mo tucked in beside me.

It rained lightly much of the night and we got up to a grey day.   With a relatively short drive back to the fruit farm near Cavour we weren’t in any hurry, stopping in Pinerolo at a campervan dump and to restock with more water.

Settling in at Cascina Mombello I made a nice and tender beef stew for dinner.  As usual momma Maya, little Spreet and the big lab welcomed us.

Tirreno-Adriatico Stage 6 – Carpegna

Having driven so far the previous evening it was less than an hour to where we wanted to watch stage 6 from.  We passed very close by to San Marino – we could see the city itself perched on it’s hillside just to the north.  Going in error to the centre of the town of Carpegna we were very nicely asked to turn around by a local cop.

Eventually on the race route we only got to the base of the real climb where we were stopped by a barrier – they’re not letting any vehicles up the best part!  There were several campervans already parked on the wide verge but it felt a bit soft to us so we followed the other small road down a short distance – driving over a large patch of solid ice on the way – it’s still very cold up here.

We parked on the side of the road behind three other campervans and had another cup of tea.  I took a couple of short walks – it’s another very beautiful area.  At the foot of the steep part of the climb are several homages to Marco Pantani – he didn’t grow up in Carpegna, but he trained on the climb many times.

A farmer across the road has put up a ‘parking’ sign and over the next few hours his field became packed – at least sixty or more vehicles so I hope he has a good day.

We watched as hundreds of people trecked up the road towards the top – seeing so many fans making the effort was great.  Around 2:45 we grabbed our lawn chairs and cameras and made our own trek, although not to the top.  We stopped just after the barrier as it’s the first of 22 hairpins and the riders should slow at least a bit as they go by.

A breakaway of five, including Alaphilippe arrived at 3:17…

…and the peloton arrived just a minute later with Pogacar in blue right near the front.

The sprinters arrived in a large bunch only eight minutes later, then I decided to cross the road to shoot the second time around.

A half hour after the first arrival they made their second pass – this time a slightly larger breakaway, including, of course, Pogacar.

It took over twenty minutes for the last rider to pass us, and one of them dropped his chain rounding the corner – he was not happy!  Luckily he managed to get it back on, and with a push from a spectator got back going up the hill.

I must say a word about some of the ‘fans’ – I find many of them very disrespectful.  The riders are on the last few miles of a very long race, and the hundreds of spectators that had taken the time and energy to walk to the top of the climb were coming down in droves as the later riders were still coming up.

At one point the people walking down were taking up the entire road as riders were trying to dodge between them.  I shouted and swore a couple of times at the f’ing idiots, especially when they walked right in front of me when I was trying to get a shot.  I’ve now been to dozens and dozens of races, and can hardly remember a time when I haven’t stayed where I was and clapped and cheered until the very last rider had passed – just wish more people showed more respect.

Back at the campervan we had a little surprise, and I couldn’t stop laughing.  Henry had managed to drag the garbage bag out of it’s door-side container and had strewn the contents all over the floor – he’d chewed the crap out of the lid and yanked it off, then grabbed the bag and pulled until it came up and out.  And we had no doubt it was Henry and not Mo that did it, although she may have egged him on from her perch on the bench.

We made the drive back to Papiano in time to shower and head down to the bar where Antonio was having another festa.  John and Janet were just about to leave but we did have a quick chat.  Then we went inside for one drink while talking with Afka and Janpietro before getting our pork-in-a-bun to take home.