San Remo on Monday and Tuesday
May 11, 2015
|Monday, May 11th.
What a glorious day we woke to. I trundled down to the beach with my book and had an enjoyable morning watching the sea and reading. (Yes, I was slathered in sunscreen)
Around 1 o’clock we hopped on our bikes and were ready to tour the city on bikes making use of the numerous trails.
As I passed through the gates I heard this horrible crunching of the gear shift mechanism behind me. Bill’s new bike’s gear box had broken. He half carried it down the terrace to our spot. After a few minutes we shrugged our shoulders, and headed out on foot.
Downtown was a little further than we thought. We trudged on and found tourist information in a beautiful building across from the Russian Church. The lady was very helpful in directing us to the sights and even to a few bike stores.
This town, 50 km east of Europe’s premier gambling town is Italy’s wannabe Monte Carlo. It does have a beautiful casino.
It was originally a town of fisherman and lemon growers but business men in the second half on the 19th century realized its potential and financed its development. Two other enterprising soles built up a very successful business of exporting the locally grown flowers. Thus it became known as the “Riviera dei Fiori” or Coast of Flowers.
Today, the town with the mildest climate has moved the railway that separated the town from its sea, uphill and built a 25 Km cycle path which passes through 10 seaside villages. In fact San Remo hosts the longest professional one day cycling race – 298 Km. Milan-San Remo classic.
By the way you might be wondering about the Russian Orthodox Church. In the mid 19th century, San Remo became a magnet for the European exiles such as Empress Elizabeth of Austria and Tsar Nicola of Russia. The church was built for the Russian community who followed Tsarina Maria here in 1906. It’s designer was the same fellow who later designed Lenin’s mausoleum in Moscow.
We did find a couple of bike stores so Bill’s bike would be repaired before we leave here.
We did wander the streets a bit and made an attempt to enter the old city. The realization that the old town square with its church was another uphill adventure, made us rethink our decision. We already had in 10, 000 steps and still needed to get home.
The bike trail took us close to our campground and after a stop at the local grocery store we arrived there, none the worse for wear.
Tuesday, May 12th.
Bill headed up to reception at 9 with his bike to hail a cab into town. I noticed that he hadn’t taken his I-Pad with him so I followed him up to the office. He was still there but wonderful news, a lady at the desk, who was in charge of tours knew of another bike company only 4 km down the road and she offered to drive him and his bike there.
About an hour later he returned having walked back. His bike would be ready by 6pm.
We just lazed away the rest of the day enjoying the weather.