Olledays by the Lake

Olledays by the Lake - One of the SP6 (Sooty Park Six) doing the Lago Loop, Topbike HQ - Italy

Were are currently enjoying a little downtime by Lake Iseo here in northern Italy. It also involves cleaning and prepping a few bikes, and planning next year's tours.

While you may well imagine a duck coasting about the tranquil pond with it's legs powering away beneath the surface....after the TdF, I feel a bit more like the dead thing lyng on it's back, at the bottom of that pond (insert smiley face here).

Two new offers for 2016

We'll be making E-Bikes available on all tours.
We tested them this year, with great results. If you have a cycling partner, who may not be putting in as many hours as you, consider bringing them along on an E-Bike. The G-force is surprising, to all who ride them. Rated 10/10.

Our hire bikes are 50% off for all bookings made during August.
Get organised for next year's holiday now, book your flight with FF points, or just take up an earlybird special. These are the golden days.
Please check our 2016 preliminary dates below.


TdF Reprise

I spoke to our neighbour the other day, she lives two doors away on Via Garibaldi, with her daughter and grandaughter. She's not quite an atypical nonna, with her pierced nose and constant smoking, and I don't often chat with her outside of the daily greetings when we pass. However last week on the street, she pulled me aside and asked what I thought about Nibali's performance in this year's TdF. Turns out she is a huge cycling fan, watching every race on the tele, including all grand tour stages. I started by talking about Team Skys dominance, and linking it to their budget. We eventually returned to Nibali, and I reluctantly confessed that I thought last year's performance was not honest. Surprisingly Stefi agreed, and matched it to Pantani and Basso's drug fuelled performances of the past. While she hoped for clean racing, she wasn't believing in it yet.

I can't wait to have a similiar conversation with a nose-pierced grandmother in Fitzroy.


Photos:

Top: One of the SP6 (Sooty Park Six) doing the Lago Loop, Topbike HQ - Italy.
Lower: Betty in the fountain, Piazza Erbe, Verona.
All photos and text by David Olle.


Cucinare report:

Here in Italy, summer and August, are getting into full swing, and this year it's hot. However the big day is August 15, the Feast of Assumption, which really kicks off the holiday season. It is THE big day for families to get together and go out for lunch. Every picnic spot, in every forest will be staked out in the morning, ristorantes fully booked, while BBQ's and rotisseries all over the peninsula will be rolling early.

My first 'Ferragosto' was back in '96, and I was the mug allocated the job of staking out the real estate, in a forest about 2k out of town. Once the land disputes were settled, everyone got along famously for the rest of the day. It was my first experience of a true Italian picnic, and included amongst the six courses served, was a fresh pasta dish. While the pasta was probably made at home that morning, it was cooked on site, in the biggest pot, on the biggest gas ring seen outside a smelter. Wine, coffee, grappa and Limoncello were also served, and after lunch everyone in the forest - not just our group of 30 - lay down and had a siesta, most with their head on a rock.

Next week's Ferragosto will see us up in the hills behind Marone, at a small church with tent and tables for a couple of hundred. Not quite the rural picnic, but close. Still lots of fun.

 

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An Australian company, Topbike has a fully equipped European base and its own fleet of high quality hire bikes. We specialise in quality cycling tours with small groups and are famous for looking after our clients.

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