I did it! I did it! I hope you are all proud of me, or a least a smidgen as proud of me as I am of myself! So what did I do exactly you make you all so proud? Only did the one thing I wasn’t sure I would be able to do… I got back on my bike on Sunday. Yes my legs ache and yes after the adventures the day before I wasn’t sure I would ever want to see my bike again let alone get on it the very next day. But get on it I did, and I am not just talking about iddy biddy little bike ride to corner shop, it was a full on ride-all-day-till-your-legs-fall-off ride!
This ride is all thanks to the lovely Georgina! As I said in an earlier blog post, George has agreed to help keep me motivated and help train with me, so on Sunday we decided to head off on our first ride together. I should point out George looked like an actual bike rider, me? Not so much! One of these days I may actually have to dress like I belong on my bike, and not like I have found a rift in time and space and come straight from the 1950’s, maybe that way I wouldn’t get so many strange looks! So anyway enough about my choice of attire (notice I am not even going to mention my footwear), I got to Accrington fine (this was obviously where I was meeting her and not just me decided to go there for no apparent reason… honest) Anyway, we decided to go along the canal, as A) we didn’t want to push ourselves with too many hills our first time out together as that wouldn’t lead to much chatting and B) George wanted to see how long it would take to get to her work from her house as her office block is right on the canal.
Now the theory is good, we cycle along the canal and time it as we go. Good logic see, easy peesey right? Especially when you consider I had just come off the canal. Yeah that’s what we thought too… how wrong we where! Now to say I have no sense of direction is an understatement! I completely took us the wrong way and we cycled for over an hour before we realise that earlier on I had taken us right when we should have gone left! I know an easy mistake to make and anyone could have made it, but the point was I had been there only an hour earlier and yet I STILL couldn’t remember the route. This does not bode well for me getting all the way to France if I couldn’t even find the way from Accrington to Rishton! Oh dear indeed! So I guess I am now also going to have to look into options of how to find my way, thankful I will have Dan with me and hopefully his directional skills will be better than mine when it comes to getting to France. There is of course the simple option of maps, but you can just imagine just how bad this red-head is at map reading. I worry that if I rely solely on maps we will be stopping ever 5 mins to check I am still on the right road, which will clearly add a lot of time to our days cycling.
So then I guess there is the suggestion of Dans to use Sat Nav as we have already seen that we can attach it to his handle bars. But how do we power it? In a car its easy, just plug it into the cigarette lighter… bikes kinda don’t come with one of those, or say, power of any kind, and I don’t think any sat nav in the world is going to last solidly for 7 hours a day without being plugged in. So the other choice is the maps on our phones, the battery will last longer on them right? But alas I still think it will die before we reach our stopping point each night and if we hit trouble and our phones were dead we really would have a problem! I guess we could always rely on sign post right? That seems like a sensible option…
Well it does, until we get the France that is. Thanks to WWII a lot of sign posts got taken down so the invading Germans wouldn’t be able to find their way, and as the French seem to have the mantra of ‘we’ll do it tomorrow’ half of them have never gone back up, so it would seem it’s not just invading armies it can confusing!
So I have this wonderful feeling it’s not going to end up 2 countries over 9 days and be more like the entirety of Europe over the course of a year!! Seriously wish us luck people!
As for Sundays bike ride though, I eventually got us back on the right track without too much piss-taking from George and we made it to her work, although as the timing part was out the window we timed it on the way back, as there was no way we could get lost getting home as well, right?!?. Guess what… we where right! We made it back to Georgina’s flat safely, although I did have to sacrifice my gel seat pad for her on the way back as it was the first time on the bike for a while for her whereas after a month of continuous riding my bottom has become quite hardened and used to my bike seat (bet that was information you where all dying to know!). Although it was of course a one time deal, next time no way I am giving up my gel seat! 😀 She did kindly thank me though by giving me one of her amazing home-made pink glittery cup cakes, and yes they actually where sparkly and glittery and amazingly tasty!
So that takes us quite nicely up to today, I decided that as I have pushed myself quite a bit over the last three days I deserved a day off today. It seems even my days off can’t be completely un-bike related however as I have buried myself in bike themed books to try to do as much reading up as I possibly can and learning important things all about cycling… yes my day has been pretty much as dull as I have just described it, but hey not everyday can be a bike riding adventure, which I think now my thighs are thanking me for!
So as for my amusing picture of the day, admit it this is the only reason you all read my blog really. As this post seems to be all about how useless-ly girly I am when it comes to anything outdoorsy I have found a bike that reflects that girliness perfectly… now I just have to paint it pink and make it glittery….
Please support us as we make this crazy long journey across England and into France, which we will no doubt get lost on at least 50 times. To donate go to www.virginmoneygiving.com/r2rchallenge thank you, and remember all money we raise will go to the NSPCC to help stop cruelty to children.
P.S Hope you have all watched The Notebook by now! 😛