Normal service will be resumed shortly

My Christmas holidays finish today, and it’s a fun thought to think when the clock strikes 7am in some Pacific island tomorrow morning it will start a worldwide Mexican wave of people waking up and swearing at their alarm clocks. I’m lucky to do a job I enjoy, but it’s still nice to have had a complete and total break, see more of my family and just relax. And of course I got engaged, which was nice*.

Well I’ve done a reasonable amount of cycling lately, and certainly a lot by my standards. I’ve kicked off my 1000 mile challenge with three days of over five miles each, and with 16.8 miles completed I am well ahead of schedule – for now. Today I first of all did a lap of Kingston Hill (a little under 2 miles) before lunch, then after lunch I rode out to Two Waters Way to have a closer look at the flooding I’d spotted earlier. Two Waters Way is so-called because two small rivers, the Sow and the Penk, meet right underneath it. Did I mention we’ve had rather a lot of rain lately?

  

The path itself is fine, it’s a viaduct built a couple of metres above the ground and this area floods pretty often, though not normally this much. I was expecting to turn back once I got there, but my legs felt good and I was curious to see what the flooding was like on the far side by the railway, so I carried on to Baswich. I could see from the road that the canal was quite high and I didn’t fancy the towpaths – they were muddy enough before the rain – so I carried on looking for a different bridge. This led me up rather a steep climb, and what was worse, an even steeper decent on very bumpy Tarmac. I went down it very gingerly, and found the bridge.

 

This is the River Penk, with the railway in the background. The row of pylons in the background are the same as in the top photo. This is what the same area looked like in early December:

Photo 21-11-2015 02 16 40 pm

Did my bike really used to be so clean?! Every time I get back now the rims and brakes are covered in grime, the chain too. I’m a little worried I’ve worn the chain out, as it seems to be getting looser but the wheel doesn’t appear to have moved. It’s probably the original chain so I wouldn’t be surprised if it needs changing. It’s got me thinking I’d better get a few spares of things I’m likely to wear out.

So off to work I go. My legs are a little tired from all my exertions, I don’t ride far but I keep riding further and today’s ride was so much easier compared to the first time I did it. I think I’ll have a complete break from riding tomorrow, although I do a lot of walking and standing at work so my legs won’t get too much rest. I may be 8 miles in credit so far, but we’ll see at the end of the week whether I’ve done my quota or not. I dare say I’ll have less time to post things here compared to the last couple of weeks, too.

*there used to be a sketch on a UK show called the Fast Show where this guy would start this boring sounding story and then turn on some noisy appliance while still talking, and after he turned it off and you could hear him again he’d end with some bizarre statement such as “and so the police said we could keep the three million pounds, which was nice.”

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