Sunday, December 28, 2014

Beautiful, but cold ride in the Chianti hills.

I had planned a day off today, but the skies were clear, and I was set up for cold riding after yesterday, so I decided on a relatively short tour into Chianti.  It was pretty cool, around 38 F, but by only going out for 2 plus hours, along with a stop in a warm cafe for a cafe machiato, it worked well.  Perhaps when it is this cold, I will need to limit my rides in length.  Makes sense.  Other than just being happy to get out, the highlite of the ride for me was the cafe in the bar in Impruneta.  It was simply jammed with people, local residents just chatting, enjoying life.  As they say here, la dolce vita, or the sweet life.  I was certainly the only cyclist there, but I stop there fairly often, and the owners kind of know me.  Either way, I was welcomed into the spirit of things, and just enjoyed the time waiting for my cafe and enjoying the cafe while watching everyone just do their thing.  Italians really know how to enjoy the moments of their life.  I try to learn from this.  Anyway, it impressed me this morning.

I simply went up through Vacciano to Impruneta, then descended to the Luiano climb, then over through San Casciano to Chiesanuova, then down to Scandicci and home.  52.1 kilometers in 2:19 for an average speed of 22.4 kph with 701 meters of climbing.  Ciao!

One of the good views on the climb to Impruneta, and if you look hard, there is a fair amount of new snow on the mountains from just above Pistoia to the Garfagnana, above Lucca.  

Looking back to the Northwest on the climb to Impruneta.

After my cafe machiato, at a favorite bar in Impruneta, on my way to the 
descent, I saw this skating rink.  Quite a surprise to me.

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