Every so often in my travels the moon and stars align and the event I am attending lines up with something else I love to do. At IndyGP it’s the flat track races. In Italy, #1 happy score is a motorcycle swap meet. If you like motorcycles (and not just old ones) time spent wandering one of these is a feast of dreams. Everywhere you turn there’s a two wheeled machine that you can just see in your garage. Sure I’m 5000 miles from home and a whole bunch of those miles are wet but it happens every time I see a Moto Guzzi Galetto or a Piaggio Ape (if it’s a Callessino whoa nelly, bar the door). For me the best ones are the old established affairs like Imola, or Novegro, but all year long there is one somewhere almost every weekend. The content varies, antiques always manage to make an appearance and for sure somebody will be selling leather goods or jewelry or watches or tools and over the years more and more Eastern block items are turning up but the one thing you can count on is motorcycles, scooters and little Italian cars and just about all of it could be yours with a little negotiation.
This trip I really was certain there was no time left in the schedule, no matter how much I wanted to find one. I was scheduled on track at Misano on Sunday afternoon. In spite of this I asked around and sure enough, there was a new one, just 15 kilometers away. My friend who knew about it told me it was 7 euros to get in and that his friend had checked it out on Friday and said it was “just OK” which by Mostra Scambio standards means “you are pretty much burning that 7 euros” but I needed a fix and in one of those moon and star moments the schedule cleared. My two friends had never been to one ever so I felt it was my duty to show them this rite of moto passage, so we piled into our little rental car and headed for Pesaro.
No matter how big (or small) the swap meet the first order of business is to make a plan. This could be anything from letting everyone in the travel group know you are looking for a certain set of decals or side panels (even at the small ones it’s such a jumble more sets of eyes is always better) to determining how long we can stay and where to meet, no point in paying roaming charges for a text or call across the ocean to somebody just across the room. Once this is done the dreaming begins. Join me for a walk around Mostra Scambio Pesaro…
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Story and photos by Vicki Smith