Tomorrow I climb up to the pass at Monginevro and say good bye to Italy as we cross into France. I do want to point out that although the Tour de France also climbs up and over the same pass, the cyclists take the less steep direction and let their sag wagons carry their suitcases. Grandma Friday and I have also heard that some of those bikes on the tour have more than seven gears. 

Today I need to thank Italy for the wonders of the last 5 weeks. 

Thank you to the countless Italian women in their seventies and eighties who showed me that a bicycle can be one’s primary transportation for years to come. 

Thank you to all the Italians that we met who were genuinely concerned for our wellbeing and warned us about not trusting their fellow countrymen. 

Thank you for allowing me to discover Amatriciana pasta sauce. Surely I can be a vegetarian in all things except for smoked pig cheeks. 

Thank you for the Via Postumia , one of the most beautiful Caminos I have ever done. Once you realize the  rich history it weaves you through you quickly forgive it’s inefficiency. 

Thank you for Italian coffee, which unfortunately has set back considerably my plan to kick my caffeine addiction.

Thank you Lillas for your Hospitalero work in the pilgrim’s hostel in Lamporo. 

Thank you to the ER doctor who waved the fees for my visit and let me twist his arm into giving me a prescription for antibiotics even though he really didn’t think I needed them for my tick bite. 

Thank you to all the truck and car drivers who slowed down or moved over to share the road with me. 

Lastly, thank you Italy for 35 different beds, none of which had bed bugs. 

Thank you Italy for thoroughly getting under our skin. We will return. 

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