It's raining hard, the sky is gray and a gray compact mist hids the hills of Florence. The Christmas lights shine on the wet concrete and few brave city bikers cautiously ride all covered in large colored rainjackets. Shops are open all day and people incessantly walk up and down in the commercial streets and in the city center hunting gifts they MUST buy. Don't worry, I don't mean to be moralist: it's nice to have a definite period of the year to give and get gifts. It's a kind of game and for sure a play. It's fun in spite so many people tell it's stressing. I think it's stressing if you are already... stressed.
As far as me I'm so used to not have money that I truly enjoy strolling around watching shops windows and shopping people, feeling no will nor envie to have anything but neither that bad judging mood son of frustration more than of a high concept. Now I have money enough to buy what I need and what I...don't need I simply don't want because my home is big but I don't want it full. Beautiful things should have some room around.
Yesterday Liveri and I went to enjoy the Christmas shopping in via Gioberti - a piece of center lost in our historical periphery, just out the Viali. A friend of mine who since many years runs a jewellery told me people ask but don't buy: the economic crisis hits hard and the political incertitude does the rest. Via Gioberti looked like a big aquarium crowed of fished crossing each others again and again. We just bought a big, long red rose for our kitchen.
Today I have got a day off because my school is occupied. Not by protesting students this time but by poor temporary and/or unemployed teachers trying to get a fix job taking part in a stupid humiliating exam. I refused to. I spend the morning with my mother who's no more that young and even a little sick so enjoys to have somebody bringing her around, especially in the pourring rain. No fear! I have got my umbrella and it's a special one: it's small but not too small, it's resistent and well made - that's a kind of miracle, isn't it? - it has got a quick and useful opening system and a cute tartan design. I bought it in a very special place: on the Tourmalet! it was 2010 and the Tour de France was a breathtaking duel between Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck. What a day that day! and it was raining so hard we couldn't reach the finish in time so we stopped by the way, in the last village and watched the race pass. I was under my umbrella when the Yellow Jersey dashed in front of us but in front of the tv in a crowded bar when the two best climbers in the world went away together in the mist... What a memory! and I always remember it when I use this umbrella...
Maybe a little boring, I know. And maybe Andy thought the same answering the same questions as ever: how do you feel about 2010 TdF? are you angry with Contador? did he dope or not? and what about Frank? and what about Bruyneel? what finally about doping in general? ah well: what about the Giro? Andy's last interview - or press conference maybe better to say - isn't exactly 'new'. But there is a part I like: when he says "I want to win races again". Good to hear that. I had no doubt but it's good because in the last months, after Andt's crash, there has been too many bullshit going on in the media.
Watching the video I thought he didn't look that happy though. I don't see him in person since one year now and it's a lot of time. I would like to put a big smile again on his face but that's growing up: you stop crying and smile much less. A beautiful victory is what he needs and the next season is rich of opportunity. It seems he'll come for Tirreno and I'm glad... I'm fed up about that funeral mood: allez Andy! lets rock that cycling show again!
I got the Christmas gift of the Fanclub! it's a cute bracelet :) you can also buy it on the Fanclub site: http://www.schleckfans.com/ What are you waiting?