Archive for category Vespa

Bike Meeting at Ghisallo

A nice sunny day pleased a few thousand of bikers who met in Magreglio, near the Madonna del Ghisallo sanctuary, a special place for me since it’s tied to the summer camping days spent in that area during adolescence. It was also my first meeting together with Vespa Club Como’s friends.

We left early in the morning from the rendezvous point in Como and we reached Magreglio parading with the hundreds of bikers already there. Then we moved to Civenna where they celebrated the commemoration of the motorcycling fallens.

The bike that impressed me the most was a beautiful 1929’s Moto Guzzi.

I wanted to visit the recently inaugurated Museum of Cycling near the sanctuary. A new and well done structure, but the price of the ticket was discouraging to say the least: a couple of Euros less than the ticket for the Vatican Museums o the Uffizi’s Gallery, booking included. With all the due respect for the history of cycling (I’m still using a speed bike older than me ;)) I doubt there was the Stendhal’s syndrome waiting for me at the museum’s exit…

On the journey back home, I went a bit of the way in the middle of a group of bikers riding Harleys, almost a sort of provocation after the letter I wrote to the local daily newspaper about Clooney and his bike.

Who knows, maybe he was there among the 4000-5000 bikers that day! :mrgreen:

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If Clooney Would Ride a Vespa…

VespaAs the whole world knows by now, George Clooney loves spending holidays on lake Como in his Villa Oleandra in Laglio. Recently the american star was involved in a curious episode reported on the pages of our local daily newspaper La Provincia, here and here. An episode so curious that inspired me to write this letter to the newspaper, published in the Letters to the director feature :

I’m asking myself how many smiles snatched the article published on last Saturday on our daily newspaper about the curious episode which featured the nice George Clooney riding his Harley up to Dizzasco, where as it seems he went for an unannounced visit to the rest house and wasn’t recognized by the doorkeeper.
Being a Vespa enthusiast and a two-wheels lover, I tried to imagine what could have happened if he got there riding a Vespa rather than a roaring Harley-Davidson. The Vespa has been a symbol of freedom for generations of italians as it is nowadays, so I like to believe that if he would have got there on a Vespa the doorkeeper would have had a different attitude, maybe recalling the journeys he did in youth with his own Vespa. Such a passion in common would have acted as a pass much more than the noisy american bike.
It happened to me more than once that not-so-young people stopped to have a look at my Vespa, and with a smile they began telling me their adventures spent riding the Piaggio’s scooter.
George gives a good example by choosing a two-wheels for his trips around the province of Como. This is something more people
should do, while they seem to prefer diving into the chaos and stress caused by the traffic fed by themselves rather than leaving the comfort of their cars even for a few kilometers .
I would lend my Vespa to the american star with pleasure, so that the next time he’ll be luckier during his unannounced visits without press managers along with him. He may know very well every palm of Hollywood and be a lover of the Easy Rider movie, but he still probably ignores how to get welcomed by the people of our lake. 😉

The nice reply by Pierangelo Marengo: Yours, besides being a love hymn for the Vespa, is a pleasant digression into the world of the possible. Of course it has to be demonstrated, but no one can prevent you from indulging in a dream on two wheels.

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The Chestnuts of the Vespa Club Como

VespaClub ComoOn last Sunday the Vespa Club Como organized the Cagna la Castagna (Eat the Chestnut), a public party at the bottom of the ancient roman walls of Como, where people could eat roast chestnuts, drink wine, listen to music, meet friends and stare at the line of Vespas and Citroën 2CV.

It was my first time at one of their public events since I joined the club only a couple of weeks earlier.

I went to their weekly evening meeting, invited by the president Gianluca Cesana, with a bit of hesitation, because someone warned me that new Vespa models like the GTS weren’t appreciated as much as older ones.

So when I had to answer to the first question about what Vespa I owned, the president told the members to wait for any judgment and let me tell them what I did with my Vespa this summer, right while some of them began moaning ( although with a clear joking tone 😉 ) about the fact I owned a GTS, since they already spotted it. I told them about my trip around Italy and they soon started telling me about their longest journeys done on a Vespa. The ice was broken thanks to Gianluca and we immediately found something to share. 🙂

Gianluca gave me a sticker of the club which is pretty original as you can see on the left. The smoking puppy on the Vespa was made by an artist working at Bonelli, the well known italian comics editor. Now I bring it proudly on the windscreen! :mrgreen:

I liked the introduction I got from the club members, they’re a good bunch of Vespa-fans indeed.

Vespa is a myth for italians and most of all a great passion to share.

L’Italia s’è Vespa” was one of the slogans I spotted on a old advertisement at the Museo Piaggio, recalling the beginning of our national anthem, “L’Italia s’è desta“.

Marketing guys are really crazy you know… 😉

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Touristech 2006 and Veronafil

TouristechTwo intense days made the weekend fly more swiftly than usual. On friday I attended the Touristech event in Villa Erba and I spent most of saturday in Verona at the Veronafil philately and numismatics fair.

Touristech is the first event organized by Wireless dedicated to new technologies and digital innovation at the service of the cultural entertainment and hospitality services for tourists. For this meeting they couldn’t choose a better location than the beautiful Villa Visconti, located in the Villa Erba park in Cernobbio. It has been a long time since I had the chance to walk in that park, although I’m often in Cernobbio, and I hadn’t remembered how pleasant and relaxing it is. In fact it was the first time I wasn’t tired when I went home after a day full of conference presentations instead of what usually happens after similar events organized in Milan.

One of the moderators didn’t forget to mention they shot some sequences of the Ocean Twelve Hollywood movie there. After all the benefits of the presence of George Clooney in his villa in Laglio seem to be much more valuable than the works by Luchino Visconti…

The presentations were all interesting, especially for the fact that the subject matter is the basis of a software project I’m working on together with the group of people I assembled at the beginning of this year. People make the difference in everything and this project is shaping up thanks to them . 🙂

I met Paolo Conti, a journalist of Il Sole 24 Ore, the brilliant moderator of the recent Mobile Force & Office Forum 2006 and we had the chance to talk about the project.

After a morning of presentations by representatives of the major players of the tourism market in Italy, such as Touring Club among the others, the event closed with a series case histories of mobile technology applied to outdoor journeys, such as the PDA guide they’re experimenting with at the Villa Reale Park of Monza and the PDA guide currently in use at the Swiss National Park.

Then I spent saturday among the numerous small stands of coins and stamp collectors setup in one of the huge exhibition halls of Verona Fiere. Should I mention this had something to do with the work behind the PC version of EcPc? 😉

My focus were Euro coins of course, and I had the chance to meet some users from the LaMoneta.it Italian forum, but unexpectedly I came back home with a surprise as much as precious: I managed to get the Green Vespa, the only Vespa model ever made for the famous Kinder surprise toys series!

I got to know of this particular toy since I read the book Vroom with a view by Peter Moore and I’ll certainly have another chance to write more about that. 😉

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