72.47km â€“ 10H06â€™
Altitude : 126m
This is yesterdayâ€™s log. No, that wouldnâ€™t be funny, even though we feel like itâ€™s the same day starting all over again!
It rained all night and all day. In a state of â€śwetâ€ť concentration, Serge forges ahead, like it or not. RenĂ©, Daniel and Thomas, not one of whom is a particularly gifted cook, manage the job fairly well and Sergeâ€™s â€śnormalâ€ť appetite returns during the dayâ€™s 14 refueling.
After Frosinone the SS6 is not so busy, then approaching Ceprano and Cassino traffic gets heavier. This place does not appear to be interesting to tourists and the cities we go through donâ€™t have anything of architectural interest. The countryside in this rain and under low clouds is very sad; there are some olive trees and fruit trees which have just been pruned. At the end of the route we begin to see mountains.
At the end of the day, Serge is at the foot of Monte Cassino, historically important because of the battle of the same name, which lasted several months as the Allied troops tried to cross the Gustav line held by the Germans, in order to liberate Rome. I knew nothing about this aspect of World War II so I went onto the Internet to find out about the battle of Monte Cassino, which cost the Allies 115,000 lives; more than todayâ€™s population in the city of Rouen, and the Germans 60,000. What an appalling balance sheet!
I also learned that the French army was represented by the French Expeditionary Corps i.e., the Tunisian, Algerian and Moroccan armies, under the command of MarĂ©chal Juin. It reminded me of the French film â€śIndigĂ¨nes,â€ť which describes a rather misunderstood aspect of French involvement during World War II.
And while I was doing my research, Serge ran calmly in this place which was witness to so many atrocities. Time has passed and Europe has been built, in the hope that we will never have to live through another such conflict
On a lighter note, during a stop to fill the vanâ€™s fuel tank, Daniel and RenĂ© met the managerâ€™s of the filling station, Giuseppe and ThĂ©rĂ¨se, a French woman, who were happy to greet Serge, to take a photo and wish him all the best for his race. It was a smile in a rather gray day. ThĂ©rĂ¨se told us that the bad weather is forecast until the end of the week, to the despair of Thomas for his photos and to the team for its wet feet!
Tomorrow : SS6 - Vairano â€“ S372 - Telese
Town : Mignano Monte Lungo (Campanie)
GPS : N41.42052Â° W013.97634Â°