Maybe you consider yourself a bit of a blading vagabond. Perhaps you were raised among a family of travel fanatics, and their wanderlust rubbed off on you. Or conceivably, you’re the type of person who stacks money for several months at a time, before strapping your skates to the side of your backpack and hitting the open road. One thing’s for sure: if you have not yet made it to Italy, quit fucking around and do yourself the favor. Buy a ticket.
You will be immersed in a culture so thick with history, hospitality and great food that by the time you meet your first blader and go for an afternoon sesh, you’ll already be regretting the fact that you purchased a round trip ticket.
My journey began on a Sunday night, in the wake of the BCN Extreme. I had 5 hours left to pack up my apartment, get wasted at the after-party and board a 7:20am flight to Milan. It was a cinch, but the all-nighter left Alex Burston, Scott Quinn and myself in a state of deep lethargy. We were out cold, deaded on the curb of the Milan Airport bus stop, by the time Json Adriani came to our aid, and revived us with a 6 euro, 3 course Italian brunch.
Comfortably settled in Milan, we spent the first few nights occupying Json’s studio apartment, where we were joined by Nils Jansons, Josh Glowicki, Aritz Ortega and the ever faithful captain of our vessel, Marco Giehm. After a few rainy days, a number of the Milan’s best gelatos, and a bumpin’ ass vino party at central station, we were ready to pack up the Razors van and see the sights in Rome.
The Romans are tight. Like all the Italians we met, they want to make sure you eat good food, skate good spots, and above all, get a chance to do all the touristy shit that is usually swept under the rug during skate trips. We wondered through the ancient city, dipping our heads in the fountain in front of the Vatican, peering upwards, wide-eyed, at the skylight inside of the Pantheon, and finally arriving at a buttery skate spot, directly across the street from the Colosseum. By the time we got there, there was already a gang of rippers, including French technical master, Adrien Anne, having a session. Talk about an epic day.
We had seen the sights and skated the spots. It was time to move on to Naples for the Trick Track competition, hosted by the guy who made the whole trip possible, and took the best care of the whole crew, Marco Valera. But first things first, we had to make a pit stop in Sorrento for some cliff jumping and a Italian picnic, prepared by Marco’s Mom and girlfriend, Martina. Somewhere along the Amalfi Coast, adjacent to mount Vesuvius, we found a blue-green lagoon with a 90 foot cliff jump. Burston got buck and went for it.
The comp in Naples was a major pull. Marco spent a month beforehand, renovating and adding fresh obstacles to the park. His work definitely payed off. Quinny took the win, Burston got 2nd, Aritz took 3rd and Glow got the best trick for doing what he does best, jumping an inconceivable gap into a bank. Nice 1 dawg. The rest is a bit foggy. I bought a bottle of Grand Marnier to celebrate, we drank beers out of bell peppers, and I woke up in the back seat of the van at 10am the next day, in a grocery store parking lot. Have a look!