Day 22 | Piacenza – Tortona (71 mountainous miles)

 Where do I begin…  Today was the best and worst day of the trip so far. We awoke from our sauna like room and left the ugly outskirts of Piacenza as soon as we could. A quick 30 miles followed before the temperatures reached the high 30’s.   After the 30 miles, there were no signs of a shop let alone a supermarket and so we stopped off at a small cafeteria for a sandwich. What followed next was very unexpected. Our old friend and arch enemy had returned – the mountain.   We climbed and climbed and climbed for hours and hours and hours. Up and up we went for miles. The scenery was beautiful however the mountain road less so. I found it particularly tough as the road was relentless and the heat unbearable. We climbed to over 1100m even passing an Italian ski school!   After a three hour climb, my first puncture, and being pooed on by a bird, we made it to the top. By this time it was 6pm and we still had 30 miles to go. We admired the beautiful view that had taken so so long to achieve and set off on our descent down the mountain. From what had been an extremely long ascent had only shaven off 4 miles from our end destination and it was looking as if we were going to arrive by sunset.   We triple checked garmy just to be sure we did in fact have so many more miles to cover and unfortunately we did. They were also all over more hills! Garmy chuckled to himself.  It was getting late and so a supermarket special was on the dinner menu for tonight. Tasteless and inexpensive are our two favourite ingredients.  After some extremely scenic cycling, passing beautiful vineyards we finally arrived at 9pm!   We were staying in a lovely little bnb and were warmly greeted by an old Italian lady who didn’t speak a word of English. Luckily with my Spanish, we managed to understand each other enough to be shown to our rooms and more importantly get the WiFi code. 

A quick snack, shower and off to bed!