From the Oberalp Pass and its bizarre lighthouse, I follow the still delicate Rhine on the winding descent to Disentis. I could drive straight to Flims, where my family lives. But I have other plans and will save myself the comfortable apartment later. Tonight I feel like camping.
It’s getting late and it’s high time I finally found my place. I can imagine that it will soon be cold and dark.
Nobody is on the streets. I am alone.
It’s funny. In Disentis I am still in Graubünden, where German is spoken. A few turns later I find myself in Ticino and everyone speaks Italian.
So I drive through the solitude of the mountains. I pass through the small town of Curaglia and shortly afterwards pass the Lai da Sontga Maria reservoir.
I immediately feel even more distant and on vacation when I see and hear the language around me. Especially in the next few days.
It’s been ages since I was last in Italy. That must have been the school trip to Rome. Now I’m old and on my own bikes.
It turns out for me that Europe is very beautiful, but also very small.
Shortly after the very unspectacular pass of Lumanier, or Lucomagno in Italian, I find what I’m looking for. There are some trees here, there is grass, flat ground and a small river.
I drive along a track to get to the river. This is probably no longer your Rhine. That would be funny. On the map I see that the future river is the Brenno.
There are a few places to pitch my tent so it’s hard for me to choose.
But it gets dark quickly. I barely have time to finish, so there’s no use for a campfire anymore.
It quickly gets cold, but instead of the fire I choose my warm sleeping bag. The moon presents itself and provides brightness. I just have to imagine the beautiful starry sky.
It doesn’t stay quiet at night. I hear loud roaring. They must be deer. The season makes sense. In autumn, male deer look for pretty mates.
As expected, it will be very cold at night. I have taken precautions and have already laid out my golden emergency blanket. It’s a few steps warmer in there. Only the crackling is annoying.
I’m up early the next morning. I still have an apple for breakfast. But I’m looking forward to a coffee. I want to see if I can get one in the next village.