The Italian Roberto Parodi used to be a banker and writer. Then a man from television noticed him as the author of motorcycle books, and he got his own reality documentary. Suddenly Roberto was a writer and presenter. He gave up the job as a banker. Since then, he has been living a life full of adventure and travel, with motorcycling spurring on his imagination.
Roberto, you are passionate about many things. Are you now a TV presenter, a journalist or a traveller?
I would call myself a writer. First of all, I am a storyteller. I think stories make our reality more interesting and attractive.
But isn't life much more exciting than stories in books?
If you want to tell a story, you have to know what you're talking about. And because my stories are always about travels and adventures, I have to ride my motorcycle around the world to write my books. That's why these two things are closely connected.
Why do you write about motorcycles?
Because I love those wonderful machines. A motorcycle is a tool for the imagination: when I'm riding, I think and dream about the future.
Do you have a motto that you live by?
CCC. That stands for cabeza, corazón and cojones. That's Spanish for head, heart and balls (laughs).
Very memorable. What does it mean to you?
It's an ironic way for me to express what the main features of a motorcyclist are: intelligence and common sense, love and generosity, and a little bit of the courage that every biker has.
And when did you discover the bit of biker courage in your head?
I've been riding motorcycles since I was 14 years old. I love the feeling of freedom that bikes give me.
Where would you go to experience this feeling and why?
The perfect route would be the Trans-Sahara road from Morocco to Senegal. I love that road. When I first drove it and reached Dakar after 15 days, I felt like an old explorer who came from Europe to discover Africa. The Scrambler could be perfect for that trip.
And if you want company, who would you most want to take a trip with?
I'd like to take a long overland trip with my sons Pietro and Vittorio (21 and 19 years old). That's my dream. They both drive beautiful old bikes and are enthusiastic about vintage motorcycles. Just like their father. But why?
The Parodis are united not only in their passion for bikes with engines that sound good. Their second common hobby involves nice things to listen to. Roberto and his two sons play in a family band called "Peter's Room". His son Vittorio (right in the picture) plays guitar and sings, just like Roberto. Pietro (left) plays drums.
When Roberto is not travelling with his sons, he likes to ride with his three friends: Andrea, Francesco and Livio. He often travels around the world with them for his television programme "Born to Ride". The programme is a reality documentary in which he gives viewers an understanding of the daily adventures of a motorcycle trip.
Where does your passion for Scramblers come from?
The idea behind Scramblers is closely connected to freedom, because they were created from different parts of other bikes to meet the needs of the driver. That's true freedom: inventing and creating something you need. Riding a bike like that means enjoying the true spirit and style of a motorcycle that was created in an unconventional way by unconventional people.
How does the maverick in you like the R nineT Scrambler?
It's a pure Scrambler with all the special features. A sensitive engine, a comfortable seat and the right position when driving. It's easy to control and you feel close to the bike.
What does your perfect day on the R nineT Scrambler look like?
It's a Sunday morning in the spring. I get to the meeting point in the centre of Milan early, drink a coffee and then head off with my friends toward the Ligurian Riviera. At the seaside we enjoy the scent of
Mediterranean plants in the first warm rays of sunshine the year, park our Scramblers in front of a small restaurant and eat spaghetti alle vongole. Is there anything better?