Into Eastern Europe: Kazlje to Keszthely

As I passed from Italy into Slovenia on Wednesday, the 26th of April, the rain began to fall lightly. The border was only 12 km from the town of Kazlje, where I would be staying with Couchsurfing hosts Marco and Arletta. Sežana disappeared suddenly. I found myself on a well-paved highway rolling gently through a thick wood. Continue reading

More Rivers: Brenta, Brentella, Piave, Tagliamento and Stella

Sunday, the 23rd of April, glowed with pleasant sunshine – enough to warm the cool air, but not enough to make me break a sweat as I made my way east from Verona. Regional Road 11 was smooth and wide-shouldered with a southerly crosswind blowing car exhaust away from me. Continue reading

More Lakes and Rivers: Franciacorta to Verona

On Wednesday, the 19th of April, I rode out from the Locanda della Franciacorta to Giovanna’s house, 13 km away. Giovanna then led me on a pastoral ride on the Paratico bike path to Lake Iseo. The path was mostly gravel and dirt, but the only tough grades were downhill.  Continue reading

The Lake District: Valbrona to Franciacorta

Holy Saturday brought clouds and afternoon thundershowers. Marieke’s sons, Emauele and Olmo, went out during the day, but basically, we all worked indoors. I read and wrote; my hostess did chores and read. It felt good to rest, and to turn in early. Continue reading

The Adda River: Piacenza to Valbrona

On Tuesday morning, I set out for Pavia, but when I crossed the Po leaving Piacenza, I changed my mind and decided to head for the Adda River and get on with my trip. The knee still hurt, but I studied my leg movement, and determined that the fit on my new pedals was wrong. I stopped just over the river, and adjusted the cleat so that my right foot could point outward more naturally. That seemed to make a big difference, so that I was able to ride back along the left bank of the Po (opposite the side I rode from Cremona) to the confluence of the Adda River. Continue reading

Pandemic Pedalling: on the road again, almost.

A year ago, the Freewheeling Freelancer pedalled home, not knowing that he would not soon set out for new places to tell you about. This week, he finally rode out again. I propose to interrupt my retelling of the River Run 2017 with trip reports when I have them. First, let me tell you what has been going on since that ride from Philadelphia a year ago . Continue reading

The Po River: Cremona and Piacenza

Palm Sunday morning, the sun bathed my shoulders as I walked to the high spots of downtown Cremona. The town was smaller than I expected from the night before; before long, I was several blocks past the Violin Museum run by the Stradivari Foundation, and doubling back. The air felt fresh, and traffic was almost non-existent. Continue reading

The Po River: Bologna to Cremona

Friday dawned sunny and cool, but warmed as I rode the Piana Padana to Modena and then to the little town of Rolo near the Po River. I wore my short-sleeved Camino de Santiago pilgrim’s bicycle jersey, but long pants. My hosts would not be home until 18:30, so I had time to stop in Modena at the Enzo Ferrari Museum, a modern complex built around the famous car designer’s birthplace. Continue reading

NOVELS ON SALE!

Many of you have enjoyed the travel and the languages in this blog. Many also enjoy bicycles and bicycle travel.  There are two special events this week close to those activities: Continue reading

Shall we ride by the rivers?

With travel still restricted, the Freewheeling Freelancer is riding in circles around the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, ready to take you on another tour. While we wait for borders to open up for Americans, I propose to take you back three years to the tour I called River Run 2017. It features a ride along the great rivers of Europe, and certainly qualifies as armchair travel for a pandemic. 

Continue reading