Morning, Col de la Bonette, in the department of the Alpes-Maritimes, we were caught in a summer snowstorm, brought on by a single cloud amongst a clear sky. The snow flakes shimmering blue and gold, landing upon exposed rock, disappeared before they could melt.
Fearing the cold, we laid still in our sleeping bags. We talked, laughing about this day, this night, this tomorrow. We made up stories of a man who brought us coffee and tried to coax us out of our slumber. He poured it into perfectly thrown porcelain tea cups that had no reason to bear the harshness of the highest of the high alps. When this offering failed, he told us stories about runaway boys and girls traveling by bicycle and a tale of a Night Heron that could not fly but journeyed from Paris to Toulouse to build a nest upon the red tiled roof tops of that red city.
Alone, we roused ourselves to eat breakfast and pack our panniers. It took us 4 days of slender roads to make it to Nice. Frostbite and sunburns echoed through our bodies. Finally the airport, Bikes in Boxes, a Lost Passport, we headed back to America. How can we not dream of this ride.
La Girafe Sportive Collection is a phantom of all sport dedicated to color, pattern and love. Today you find it on the small roads of France and small packages on your doorstep, tomorrow it will be on the clay courts of Monaco and the cliffs above Cassis. Men will fling themselves with rope and ice axe on frozen waterfalls in Switzerland and women will sail under its banner from island to island across the Pacific. Its brand will not parade itself with pride borne out of victory but joy in the quiet loud moments of sport.
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