The day started so nice. I woke up later than usual, Elisa fixed me a healthy breakfast, and when Mirco came back from a business meeting they sent me off with a bag full of food and wished me a good trip. I was in a good mood, cycling was easy, I anticipated a quick arrival to Venice and a pleasant day there. What could go wrong?
I got a flat tire – no biggie. Not my first, so I fixed it relatively quick. Put my bags back on the bike and… it was flat again. I didn’t panic. Applied another patch, put the wheel back, loaded my bags and…repeat. I had to take the back wheel off to change the tube six times before it held its air until I got to Venice. I suspect it was a batch of old dried up tubes.
I finally arrived and was ready to board the ferry to go to San Marco Square, but bicycles are not allowed on ferries. Maybe others would turn around and leave, cursing the Venetian rules, but not me. I cursed, of course, while dragging the bike with its cargo through narrow streets full of tourists and carrying it over numerous bridges – six of them at least – including the Realto Bridge. But in the end, I am probably the only person who ever came to Piazza San Marco with his bike.
As soon as I snapped my last picture, the back wheel was flat again. I was out of tubes at this point. I used my last resort: I called Mirco and asked him to rescue me. And so he did. About one hour later we were back at their house in Padua. Pizza and beer, cheese, wine and conversation. The day ended as nice as it had started.
I owe a big one to Elisa and Mirco for their hospitality and their help.
P.S. The word “Ciao” has Venetian origins. It used to be “s-ciavo vostro”, which means “your servant”. Then it became at first “s-ciao” and then “ciao”.
Today in numbers:
52 km – distance covered, including dragging and carrying Greengo
3h – time riding, walking, climbing steps of bridges
4 – new tubes wasted
2036 km – total so far. Bigger part is behind