Friday, March 6, 2015

First FBB tour of 2015

I had a nice tour with a French couple today who are now living in Belgium.  The tour was done for Florence by Bike, and originally it was booked as our standard "Chianti tour".  A couple of things happened to change this from the standard.  First, Monteoriolo where we usually have lunch, etc. at a beautiful villa was not open yet for this, and second, Delphine, the female half of the couple was not at all sure she wanted to go out, let alone for the whole day.  A compromise was arranged before I even knew about it.  Jim really wanted to cycle in the countryside, and Delphine would go along happily if it was for 1/2 day, not the whole day.

So, it ended up more like one of my custom tours than the regular FBB tour.  We did do the normal route out to Piazzale Michaelangelo to start, although today it was interesting as the viale was closed just after crossing the Arno.  My route did not change, but traffic was different than normal.  Great pictures at the Piazzale, then up to Poggio Imperiale then down to Galluzzo for cafe and a break.  By now, Delphine was very happy they were doing this, which was a change from the start.  Basically, 10 minutes into the ride, she was great with the excursion.  We rode up from Galluzzo to the turn off for San Gersole, and discussed the options.  I had checked with Marika to see if it was fine if the bikes came back later in the afternoon, which was fine.  At this point, however, Delphine definitely wanted to return, so we did a loop through San Gersole, Vacciano, and Cinque Vie.  Everyone was totally happy as we returned, and Delphine was particularly happy about the length saying it was just perfect.  Marika and Andrea at the shop were a little surprised at how happy they both were, as Delphine was definitely just going along with everything at the start, and they were assuming a difficult day for me.

All was good, though, and we rode back to the shop through the Centro, which they were both quite happy with.  Definitely a different speed and length than what has become the norm for me after the last of my clients in October.  The people I took out in November and December were cyclists who were experienced and relatively fast.  Good to be back out taking clients around the beautiful countryside here.  It was very windy for the entire tour, which actually has me quite tired on my return.  28,7 kilometers in 2:24 rolling time averaging 11.9 kph with 512 meters climbed.   Great job, Delphine and Jim, and thanks for, "Riding with Cosimo".

Here are a few pictures of Jim and Delphine during our tour today.
The wind was a challenge, but it made for crystal clear skies and
great views.  

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