A Way to Be Me – Col des Aravis

Col des aravis bike tour

It’s pretty warm today.  I guess I’ve been riding the bike for at least five hours now, but I’ve reached where I wanted to be.  Col des Aravis.  From here on it’s all downhill so I can chill here for a while, enjoy some coffee and cigarettes, and the view. 

Isn’t it bad for your lungs?  I’ve never seen a cyclists smoking. 

Who told you I was a cyclist?  I’m just cycling.  And stop bitching about cigarettes and just listen to the cow orchestra.  The music coming from the bells of a thousand cows. 

Do you know why they have those bells?

I don’t really know but must be for protection against predators. 

What predators? You know, wolves and such. Do you think the music scares them?  I think that makes sense.  Makes them think there is something bigger than them. 

Do you think wolves are that stupid?  I would have guessed that over time they would learn how it’s all a human trick.

Well, none of that matters now.  They are all dead.

Wolves are all dead?  Yeah, look at these wild mountains.  They look so wild, so untamed, so natural but you can’t find anything in there that can kill a man.  How about the cold, the storms, and the wind?  That, they can’t control yet.  But the rest is gotten rid of.

So why the bells? 

Must be for the tourists. 

An espresso for three euros.  It’s okay, I don’t get it every day. It’s nice to spoil yourself every once in a while.

So, where to from here?  I guess I’ll camp somewhere on the road to Chamonix.  I can’t ride much longer today.  

And how much longer can you keep doing this?

What do you mean this?

I mean this- this thing you’re doing.  Escaping. 

As long as it takes.  The guy is chasing me, I can feel his heavy breath on my neck. I won’t let him get me. 

Maybe he’s already got you. Good for him then.

I’ll still cause trouble.  I won’t be a wolf in his mountains.  I’ll be a fox-steal his chickens, eggs, whatever I find. I’ll adapt and survive.  That’s what the wolves did wrong.  They were too rigid.  I will be elastic. 

Wolves tried being elastic as well.  They are called dogs now.

Same is happening to foxes nowadays.  YouTube is full of pet fox videos.

Then I’ll guess I’ll find a different way to be me. 

Good luck.


Part 2 of Tour du Mont Blanc: Cruel Man – The Climb

Part 3 of Tour du Mont Blanc: Clichè


Col des Aravis, cows making music
col des aravis