Testo e immagini di Sara Ischia

In a period where talking about FREEDOM is difficult and thinking about TRAVEL is pure madness, we can only DREAM, and we must never stop dreaming! 

Dreaming big, exaggerating, thinking and planning the next trip. We are free to do this and it is thanks to our imagination that we will find the real reason to get up in the morning, with a head full of dreams waiting for that day, when we can go out without limitations and leave without thoughts. Leaving for that small or big trip born from our imagination and from that forced confinement that we will not easily forget; loneliness exploited as a research, made of hours on the computer, open maps, fingers tracing and pencil marks showing the possible roads to take; some remain impossible dreams, others will come true. I want to think that we will be ready that day because we have had time to mentally prepare our bags and figure out what equipment is best for us. I’ve already chosen the tires for my Gravel bike, Pirelli Cinturato, ideal for my next adventures on dirt roads. The mystery will remain the season, what will be the month of departure? It doesn’t matter if it’s hot or cold, we’ll be ready and I can’t wait!

At the moment, I’m dreaming of riding the Tuscany Trail in as many days as possible, I’m dreaming of riding with only daylight so as not to miss any detail, seeing cities again, riding in new places, on dirt and white roads, going from the hills to the small villages and old towns that are the most beautiful in the world. I dream of stopping to taste typical products, meet local people and maybe ask them for some water to fill my empty bottle, ask for advice on where to eat and, in the evening, find a nice place to pitch my tent. I dream of waking up with the rooster’s crow and the sun rising through the vineyards thinking back to the glass of wine I drank the night before and trying to remember the name of the trattoria where I had dinner. I know it will be the end of May, it will be spring and it will be the Tuscany Trail 2021. I don’t know if I will leave alone or in company yet; the certain thing is that you are never alone at such a great bikepacking event!

I will ride to regain my place out there, take my time and make the most of it observing what surrounds me, stopping to see up close what enchants me most trying to re-establish a true contact with nature. I test myself by always riding a few more kilometers, maybe putting myself in difficulty and then finding solutions and finally realizing that, in those moments, life is really limited to the basics: sleeping and eating.

The thing that fills me with joy is knowing that we’ll be back to have stories to tell and landscapes to describe with our most beautiful words, the ones that come from the heart and go straight to the listener.

We’ll be on the road again, without limitations, and it will be a new beginning because the bike is freedom and discovery. So, “SMILE, BREATHE and PROCEED SOFTLY” ,this is my motto. Smile, because smiling opens the heart of the people you meet and seeing you in trouble will be happy to help you, breathe and live this moment; it is not effort, it’s your ADVENTURE; slow down and let your eyes look at all that you have managed to achieve with your strength alone.

We’re not just cycling, we’re living, and we’ll surely be in a wonderful place, without fear, because there’s always someone out there ready to lend us a hand, whether it’s for a small repair, a shelter for the night or a good piece of advice.

What we can do right now is train, cycle, get the body used to the effort and to the many hours on the saddle and dream. I dream in silence, well hidden, I fill my bags with a few but carefully chosen things, I reach my favourite place and spend the night there dreaming of being somewhere else. This is freedom too; freedom to dream while waiting for the freedom to travel!

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