I cannot believe how this year has flown. It’s been 2 months since my last blog and I’ve had to admit that I’m pretty rubbish at blogging really. No matter, we plough on.
The whole ride-buddy thing that banged into flames is still burning bright. Some clothes, a bike and a toothbrush have arrived at my home. There was a pasta maker – he’s a great cook – was here but he took it back this weekend to make pasta at his home. No doubt it will be back at some point.
I may have accidentally bought a new bike. New to me anyway. I have fancied a nice steel bike for a while, having seen some of the gorgeous bits of kit that Biggs on Cycle Chat has. I chatted with him about having one of his but they are mostly a smidge to big for me. He did give me the nod on a MB bike, hand made in Dronfield c. 1982. The drive train is a bit of a mish-mash but I will sort that. I might try to find a nice retro 105 set for him. The bike is definitely a him. I call him PeeBee. As he is my Purple Bike. He is, quite frankly, the best £150 that I have ever spent. I put Gatorskins on him a couple of days after getting him and gave him a good clean. First, shake down ride was 5 miles which morphed into a 50km. The saddle that came with him was some 80s retro thing. The most uncomfortable thing on the planet. I gave it to Ride-buddy who has a much more retro bum than I do. I like a ladies specific saddle.
This pic was taken at Coltishall when I took him to Norwich for a nice ride. He is a proper mile muncher. I have changed the Selle Italia Flow for a Selle Italia Diva and put the flow back on my Carbon Roadie (Bluey – I have no imagination when it comes to naming bikes).
The week before I got PeeBee, I went out with the Yellow Bellies Cycling Club and we had a blast, right up until I broke a spoke and had to be recovered back to where my car was parked. Mavic are not best fast with delivering spokes. It’s been on order since 9th September and it’s still on order. I need a new set of wheels for the winter anyway, it might take until spring to get spokes at this rate. I’ll ring them again this week.
Since my last post, I set a date to finally get that 100 mile ride in. I was planning on doing the ride in the summer, but it was a hot one. Then I lost a bit of fitness (in my mind at least) and then I bought PeeBee. Looking at the forecast I figured that the 15th October would make a good one, just before the storms hit 3 or 4 days later and I knew that that weekend was my best shot for a bit. I organised that 2n would drive my car to Norwich so that I could get back home again. I organised with my friend Debbie that we would go to lunch so I could replenish some calories. Routing was interesting but I think that I did a good job.
I left home at about 4am after some porridge and a cup of coffee and headed off to Boston on the back road. At Boston my GPS had a hissy fit and stopped recording but kept directing me. I didn’t notice this until Fosdyke bridge where I went over the River Welland. I got it started again and doglegged a bit towards Holbeach Bank and Gedney Dyke. I got to Sutton Bridge just as it was light enough to take a picture.
We went over the cyclepath/footpath bit, not the main road bit. Even at that time of the morning we deemed it far too scary for a woman and her bike. From there we headed to King’s Lynn and the McDonalds on the Hardwick Industrial Estate. Happily, the moment that I was over the bridge I found a lovely cyclepath that went for a good while.
The sunrise over the Gt Ouse was nice. I thought it made PeeBee look more attractive.
The McDees was mostly empty and the manager said that I could bring PeeBee in while I ate my porridge and hash brown. I had a coffee and an espresso, which I dumped in the coffee. 2 beans that way. 2n turned up and had breakfast while I was there. I showed him where I was heading next and he spectacularly failed to find me or follow the correct road. No matter. I followed the B1145, which is a cracker of a road, past Gayton, Litcham, right the way to Bawdeswell where I picked up the A1067 which was very busy so I hooked off left and headed into Whitwell and bought cake and coffee and met up with 2n, changed out of longs and into shorts and jettisoned my jacket.
I headed along the trail a while until I picked up the Reepham road and then went into Norwich the pretty route, via Hainford and the A140 past the airport and into Cowgate, Norwich. It was enough to tip the GPS over the 100 mile mark. Poor GPS was on fumes and I stopped it at 1% battery remaining.
Once I added on the bit that didn’t record. Re-routed it on my Garmin webpage at home, I found that I’d ridden an average 15mph and had completed 109.82 miles. I was very pleased with that.
I am not getting much riding at the moment. My new job means a longer day with a 30 minute commute each way. This will change soon as a new assignment means a 45 minute commute, less money but I’m getting a contact centre on my CV. Not that I don’t have contact centres on, it’s just not recent enough for most employers. Contact centres have a high churn rate which means that promotion is easier than in other sectors. I need a better pension so need to fast-track a bit.
I will try to keep my blog up. Rides will be shorter, colder and I’ll make more of an effort to take some decent photos.