colorno is a small town. it doesn't have everything you want. it doesn't have everything you need. yes, we are learning that we are supposed to eat locally. but parma is still local - even if it takes an hour to get there. biking is "green." it's good for our legs. the air allows us to become particularly acclimated to the cheese-characteristic known as "animal sensation." our baskets limit us only to buy and bring back what can fit in. our butts may never forgive us. and when we have a friday off from classes and we have a porta-party at a pils pride beer fest near como the next day, it calls for an excursion adventure - even if it's drizzling and the sky screams with dark clouds. even if alberto calls us crazy.
i trust arina. even when she yells back to me "don't tell your mum!"
a couple hesitations ("let's just ride to conad and see how the weather is") a couple promising outlooks ("the sky is blue and cloudless over there") and we decided to continue on with our trip. we love a fun adventure, a good story, any quest for food, and of course, an opportunity to take some pictures.
we saw an otter. we saw the barilla factory. we saw ikea (ee-ke-yah). we crossed, and were on, the autostrada. and through the busy sidewalks of parma, we made it to esselunga - superstoreextraordinaire. it is huge. it's nice to have so many products and food varieties available, but it was a little overwhelming at the same time. too many options (but no sriracha). even as we stared at the aisle of olive oils, racking our brains to remember everything we learned about labels, bottle colors, regions, misleading words, stamps of guarantees, price comparisons...it was almost intimidating. how could i have learned and known so much yet draw a blank and know so little at the same time?
happy with our somewhat-non-colorno-available-purchases-that-totally-made-this-trip-worthwhile, we strategically stuffed our baskets and headed to the second hand store where we couldn't possibly carry anything more home, let alone any fragile antique dishware that i ooh-ed and aah-ed at. "i knew i shouldn't have brought you here" arina said to me. we did make it back to colorno though, sans via autostrada, but with bike seats soaked from the rain and with unforgiving numb butts.
taking pictures while biking is like texting while driving.