Each year we spend two weeks in Sardinia that we have come to love a few years ago. It is an easy trip for us as we can bring all our stuff and our dog in our own car. We drive the one hour stretch to the harbour of Genova and board the traghetto, ferry. After dinner on board we try to sleep the night in our dog-friendly cabin and early in the morning we disembark at Olbia or Porto Torres. Before afternoon we arrive at our holiday home near Oristano on the east coast. It is not cheapest of transport options but for us it is ideal.
The Giro 2017 – Amore Infinito
The day before our departure this year we heard that the Giro d’Italia was about to depart. Oh, well, we thought, just another year that we won’t be able to watch one of the stages. In all the years we live in Italy we had managed to watch the Giro pass by only once, in 2011 when the cyclists visited Stradella, 15 minutes from our home. And now 2017 is not going to be a Giro year again. Let’s just have a look at the percorso, I thought, maybe they pass closeby our house again while we are in Sardinia. But no! This year the Giro happened to start in Sardinia of all places! This turned out to be the great race’s 100th anniversary and the organizers had decided that to celebrate this the tour was to visit all regions this episode.
Luck was on our side even more: on the same morning we were to arrive at Olbia the 2nd stage of the Giro was to depart at … Olbia. Can you believe it? We would arrive at 8 a.m., the cyclists were to depart at 10. And to make matters even crazier, the stage was to pass close by our holiday home, 100 km south of Olbia. We could easily arrive, drive to our holiday location, unload and then go an watch the Giro pass at the village of Dorgali. Fantastic! So that is what we actually did. As is was only the second stage, it wasn’t clear yet who would be this years great contenders for winning the race. We must have seen our conational Tom Dumoulin passing by, who was to become the first Dutch winner of the Giro a few weeks later! If only we had known this at the time.
An orgastic experience
The entire event was worth the small detour anyway. We were lucky, again, to find a free table in a bar spot on at the centre of the village and could watch the cyclists arriving on a large screen and then passing live on the street. The Giro is a big circus actually with all the promotional cars passing long before the cyclists arrive. Watching the inhabitants prepare themselves for the arrival of their heroes, getting more and more anxious as the giro draws closer … It actually resembles a collective orgasm: they are coming, they are near, they’re already at …, just one curve now, I can almost see them, yes, yes, yes, yessssss there they aaaarrreee! …. And gone, over, past. Everybody leaves and within 30 minutes the streets are deserted. Only the waste, some paper and lost little pink flags remind one of the spectacle that took place just a while ago. Ah well, next year.
Il Giro 2018
Yes, next year, 2018! Will our hero Dumoulin participate to defend his title? And can we manage to watch a stage live again. The itinerary has been made public. The 18th stage on the 24th of May is not far from our home, so we might just make it. Forza il Giro! Forza Dumoulin!