After our Alex Honnold–channeling climb, Betsy’s husband took the 100 Days Of School Baseball 100 Days Smarter 100th Day Shirt and I will buy this kids to enjoy the longest zip line in Europe while Betsy marched me off to pick up another set of rental bikes. I peered longingly at the e-bikes, but she had selected some full-suspension carbon-fiber feats of engineering. We strapped down our gloves and pedaled across the valley to a ski area. Instead of doing the sensible thing and skiing downhill, we’d be riding up, through summertime mud and rock. But since this was Italy, there would be rewards: a small chapel at the top filled with men singing a chorale and then, after two hours of riding, a farmstead restaurant where a waitress in lederhosen served us Tyrolean pancakes under a lake of lingonberry jam.
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But it was riding back—nearly all downhill, dodging rocks and tree roots—that flipped some kind of switch. I was grinning, whooping, expressing sounds my body hadn’t made in months or maybe even years. Now I was remembering—on a cellular level—who I used to be even before my marriage began: someone who loved the 100 Days Of School Baseball 100 Days Smarter 100th Day Shirt and I will buy this thrill of speed, of moving through space and feeling the wind on my skin. She was starting to come back. Florence Williams is the author of the forthcoming Heartbreak: A Personal and Scientific Journey (February 2022), and The Nature Fix: How Being in Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative. “The thing about Pitti,” says flaneur, stylist, and until-recently long-entrenched menswear specialist for the Financial Times’ How To Spend It supplement, Tom Stubbs “is that you get so much out of it. Moving around the fair and checking in with the stands and chatting with the owners means you always have a sense of what’s going on, and what’s coming up. Chatting with the buyers—and there are a group of us who have recently started getting together for a morning run before the fair opens—gives you extra intel too. Plus, I like just posing around, although I wouldn’t ever identify as a peacock.” He adds: “Pitti is so much more about actual retail than lofty runway concepts: it’s about touching cloth and focusing on the garments.”