On this amazing Saturday lunch time in the middle of November, we are sitting in the sunshine, waiting for the kettle to boil after a lovely 40 minute walk with the dogs, their second walk today. The sun is shining, the laundry is on the line drying in the gorgeous weather and I have finally managed to wash the bike.
I last blogged when we were in Dereham on Thursday afternoon. Oh what adventures we have had since then.
Cycling back on Thursday, Kenn said that his left pedal seemed loose so he stopped and had a look. The nut holding the spindle on had fallen off somewhere. Despite retracing our steps, we couldn’t find it so we carried on and hoped for the best. We were half a mile out of Dereham by this time, so only a quick (or slow) 3 miles to go back to camp.
We were going along quite nicely when, suddenly Kenn’s left pedal and crank dropped off right in front of me. I didn’t see it in time, and ran it over which put me dramatically off course. Happily, I was veering to the left, and not into oncoming traffic (a Reliant Robin was coming towards us at speed, about 15mph). I went up on to the grass, down the bank but happily, by progress was halted by a large amount of stinging nettles and thistles.
Kenn thought it was hilarious. Charming.
He made his way over the grass verge and stepped down into the ditch and undid my foot from my rat-trap pedals. Sniggering as he went. He said that his first instinct was to head home on my Giant, leaving me – with our shopping in a rucksack, still on my back – and going back to camp. He didn’t mention this bit until yesterday when he admitted it to our friend Mark. Kenn pulled me back into an upright position, which was easier said than done and the prickles had a good old hold of me.
Once out, Kenn started to push his bike until I suggested that he tried pedalling one legged. He thought that it might work so he set to work, with his right foot in his rat-trap pulling and pushing to propel himself along. I kept a little distance back in case anything else dropped off as I didn’t fancy the ditch again. He did pretty well and when we turned off the main road onto the country road, it is pretty much down hill all the way back to the camp except for one little up hill bit. Kenn even managed to keep on pedalling one leggedly to the top of the hill. Once up at the top again, it really is down hill all the way to camp. There was no reason for Kenn to turn his pedal again for 0.45 miles, he was very pleased about that. He has fixed his bike now.
Friday, we drove in to Norwich but we have a split water pipe. As we discovered, our fix wasn’t very good. We got to our Church and asked Julie, the Pastor’s wife, if we could leave the car while we cycled the 5 and a bit miles into the city to get the right parts. She said that it was fine, and off we went. Stupidly, we had both forgotten our cycling jackets, so I had a tee shirt and a gilet, Kenn had a tee shirt and a fleece jumper (of which I was very envious). We found what we needed at the local Halfords and then proceeded into the City to our regular safe parking space. We did what we needed to do and then cycled back to the Church, about 11 miles altogether. Once there, we discovered that we had everything we needed except for a 10mm spanner. Typical. We limped the car home, using a 5l container of water, and topping up as we went.
Kenn fixed the car this morning, after a nice 30 minuted dog walk. While he was fixing, I cycled to Dereham, directly to Morrisons and back. I made excellent time and was back at camp in an hour and a quarter, including getting lost on the way through Dereham to the supermarket. A nice young lady gave me directions but I don’t think that she knows left from right as she definitely told me to go left at the lights. I did and started heading out to open country again. I met a lovely couple of men who were chatting over an open car bonnet. They gave me most excellent directions, a bit of town history and advised me where to find the best mechanic and car sales place. All a bit random but it was nice to pass the time of day.
I was hoping to cycle a bit further today, the day is still young however. I was hoping to only have 50 miles to target remaining. Kenn has fixed his bike so I might suggest a quick 4 miler.
Miles for these days: 14.45
Miles to date: 946.83
Miles to go: 53.17
Max speed: 19.6
Average Speed: 12.8
Feelings: Cycling through this glorious weather is fantastic. Who cares about speed.