Today was bliss. The sun shone. I drove with the roof down on France's great roads to the Mont Blanc tunnel, stopping to drink in the scenery a couple of times. Rising up to the tunnel entrance cooled me down, as did the tunnel itself. Then it was out into brilliant sunshine and less brilliant roads populated by two of the three categories of Italian motorists; the ones who like to express their appreciation of my car and the ones who see her as a challenge. I didn't meet the third category — the ones in police cars.
There was a brief hold up — the first of the trip — on the Italian side of the tunnel. I don't know whether there had been an accident or breakdown but we waited for a while — long enough for me to get hot and put the roof up so as to enjoy the air conditioning. Then a kindly category #1 Italian directed me out of the line of stationary trucks and onto to a back route.
There followed a lot of "tunnelling" noisily in low gears for musical effect. This was much appreciated by category #1s but set off a couple of category #2s in (would you believe it) a SEAT and a Skoda! I was happy to provide entertainment for both categories as long as I could steer clear of #3. I can give a young man no better gift than to tell his girlfriend how he passed a Ferrari in his Skoda today. I was that young man once (though it was a Wolseley not a Skoda) and it makes me smile to think of it.
Then we reached the plains between the Alps and my destination - Alessandria. It was cool and pleasant on the autostradas and I stopped briefly to put the roof down again. Italy looked gorgeous as I sped along and having skipped lunch I began to look forward to a better meal tonight than I had last night in Dijon. That was my fault. I didn't feel like getting dressed up to eat out alone and so cheaped out on French fast food. What a waste of a day in the food capital of the world! I shall make no such error here as the hotel has a highly recommended restaurant. My progress map is updated here. Tomorrow I have a shorter run to Florence and have two choices. I can drive Speranza past her birthplace or take the coastal route. What do you think?