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Murphys Law in Italy

Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

Murphys Law in Italy

Old 11-18-16, 07:36 PM
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Murphys Law in Italy

To make the long story short and not waste your time I went to italy and did not ride.Now I'll reveal why.The flight is long,I'm used to flying to Ireland but Italy is longer.We arrived in Rome and had to catch an Air Italia flight to the south.This part was very hectic.I could not imagine carrying a boxed bike with me.We changed planes and air lines so we moved our luggage.When we arrived at the Air Italia counter if you are a male you notice the women are attractive and stylish.They wear stockings.I kinda liked stockings not sure what happened to them.I remember being sent out to buy stockings before an event only to be confused by all the selections.In the early part of marriage I bought what I wanted her to wear.That never worked out. I'm not wearing red fishnet stockings to a Baptism!I went to the drug store allot!

When we arrived at the second air port we are in the middle of No Where.There is nothing here.One can not change money,eat anything and the workers just stair at you.We were told at Rome we were too late to board we complained using my 6 month granddaughter.It sort of worked.They made arrainagements for us to board the plane but the luggage would follow on the next available flight.I don't know why but the luggage came with us! I also don't know why we waited for our luggage when we were told it was coming later.Now I think The Italians are screwing with us.
We pack up our minivan rental.There is no space for a tissue box if needed.If we brought bikes with us another minivan would be necessary .We are going with 14 people 6 ride bikes.Thank God the plan was to rent bikes at the resort.
We are very close to the resort but have no idea which way to turn,we are at a y in the road with 10 signs pointing left and right..A car pulls up ,a male says are you the Americans? Yea We guess so.Follow me!!He brings us to the Villa.Turns out he is the son of the woman who runs the place.He repeated this service for 3 other couples.We check in ,look at the view we are on top of a mountain.The name of the village is high mountain.The villagers are very good at naming.We walk around the village in the morning,the paths are very steep.My wife has asthma and has to take a break from walking.A car goes bye us these are not walking paths.We are scouting the area,cobble stone roads,cement with stones, no shoulders,cars whipping by.Not sure if these people are the best drivers in the world or lucky.After a couple of days ,walking with a car zooming by say 2 feet away is normal.I made the decision for us not to bike here.Shortly thereafter I heard from a local no one here owns a bike ,the hills are too steep.We stayed a week there and never saw a bike.
The Italy trip was great.We stayed in a place that was built in 1010 but was up dated ,very modern.I wished I could speak Italian.The people we met were very nice ,that description doesn't do them justice,they were friendly,outgoing,helpful and nice.The food and wine did not disappoint at all.My daughter speaks Italian so she was a great help.Without her I'd still be in Italy.Highly Recomend!
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Old 11-19-16, 05:48 PM
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Thank for the chuckle. Decades ago my father used to travel extensively on business. He said that in Italy one never sees a car with a dent; they all drive tiny cars at 100 mph, so every crash is a total.
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Old 11-19-16, 07:08 PM
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Italy is my favorite place to visit. We didn't ride the last time we were there but we saw plenty of cyclists. My bike will travel with us next time.

The house wine in Italy is superb!!
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Old 11-19-16, 11:19 PM
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Probably could have gotten onto a Frecciabianca at Rome and gotten wherever you needed to go with much less hassle, except for the "helpers" in the train stations who want to show you how to buy ticket. I don't know about bringing bikes on the train though. Plus they seem to have "wildcat" strikes at the drop of a hat.

scott s.
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Old 11-19-16, 11:21 PM
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I can see you guys need to drive an old Italian car. I`ve had 5 Fiats, they`ve all been underpowered and you have to be prepared to screw them to keep up wi the traffic.

Only you find yourself doing better than that . . . you end up drivng like an Italian! Great fun. When you`re younger . . . .
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Old 11-20-16, 11:40 AM
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The whole country is as mad as a box of frogs, but I love it.
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Old 11-20-16, 12:20 PM
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In Napoli, stop lights are for decorative purposes only, and stop signs a mere suggestion.
Proud parent of a happy inner child ...

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Old 11-20-16, 01:21 PM
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Murphy was an optimist.
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Old 11-20-16, 07:09 PM
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Italy . . . "Disneyland for Adults". Been to Europe many times, and have yet to visit outside of Italy. Just can't get out of the country.

Travelers hint: If your Italian is not up to snuff, switch to Spanish. They can't talk back to you in Spanish, but will understand fully what you are trying to say.
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Old 11-26-16, 10:28 PM
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I've been to Italy twice and rode both times. I normally hate riding in traffic, but I felt far safer riding on Italian roads, in relatively heavy traffic, than I feel riding in the US. IMO, riding in Italy is the absolute best! Somebody pointed out to me that many Italian motorists have been cyclists at some point in their lives and they seem to understand the notion of sharing the road.
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Old 11-28-16, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by volosong View Post

Travelers hint: If your Italian is not up to snuff, switch to Spanish. They can't talk back to you in Spanish, but will understand fully what you are trying to say.

Yes. Italian and Spanish are relatively similar in many respects.

And for those of you who haven't ridden there, not everywhere is mad. A few years ago I spent nearly two weeks at a "camp" outside of Bassano del Grappa in the Veneto region, which is the north, not all that far from the Dolemites. The residence was in the shadow of Monte Grappa. Great riding and totally sane. Great grappa (of course) and prosecco. One day we took a ride to a major prosecco vineyard area. Stopped for pastries and coffee at a beautiful villa with photos of Sandra Bullock in a hallway. She apparently likes to stay there. The first day we were there we rode to the start of the final stage of the Giro. The riders rolled out of a pasta factory and up to the starting line.

Rode there during the last week of the Giro back in '95. Pantani was injured and wasn't competing, but a few of saw him out for a spin as we were riding to the day's finish at the Bianchi factory. There was not mistaking those ears. A few days later I got a great shot of Chiappucci as the race started up the Col D'Angelo from Sampeyer.
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Old 11-28-16, 05:07 PM
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Just for some perspective. You are almost twice as likely to be killed riding in a car in the US (11.1 / 100k population) as in Italy (6.1 / 100k) and 3 times as likely to be killed on a US highway as IT Autostrada.

You are almost 4 times as likely to be killed riding a bicycle in the US (76 / 1 billion km ridden) as in Italy (21 / 1 billion km ridden).

Italy is much more dangerous than The Netherlands, Denmark, or Sweden, but much safer than the US. Oh, and there's effectively no speed limit on the Autostrada except at the very well marked speed cameras. Oh II, and no enforced drinking age.

Wonderful place Italy! :-)
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Old 11-28-16, 07:29 PM
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Is it not 130 or 135 kmh?
Although very aggressive drivers but very aware of what they are doing not like in the U.S.
The British are by far more courteous and the speed limit is only 70mph but they drive on the left and it takes some adjustment time--they keep their distances as well when they follow, not like the german with their insane speeds!
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