Yesterday I cycled to work, Dunstable to Stevenage and as ever it turned out to be fun! Yes fun, although not how I planned it as it involved a few snags along the way:
My Cateye front light was looking unusually dim as I set off, taking in the Luton Dunstable Busway cycle track. While I am used to the initial brightness from a new set of batteries, the brightness levels off quite quickly and maintains a reasonable beam for many hours before fading completely. Yesterday was on the edge of fading and when daylight was looming I tried to turn it off – except I couldn’t. This has happened before with the fancy magnetic switch. Once I got to work I unscrewed the lens/LED and then it wouldn’t work at all putting it back together.
So it was a trip to Halfords at lunchtime to buy a replacement. I hate these unplanned purchases but the Lezyne Macro price turned out to match internet prices. Mostly charged up it lit my way home beautifully but more about that another time.
Oh the other bit of failed technology was my Cateye Strada computer – presumably a failed battery. Actually it is a nice reminder that we cyclists should enjoy the freedom of cycling and not get too preoccupied with the gadgets. Just enjoy cycling for the fun of it!
Cold feet and cramp
I forgot to take my overshoes, after all no rain was forecast. The knock-on effect was getting cold feet and that led (I believe) to getting cramp in my feet a few times. Oh how I hate that!
The afternoon appointment
Now this was embarrassing, seriously embarrassing. I had completely forgotten I had a meeting arranged in Hemel Hempstead during the afternoon. I knew I couldn’t possibly make that in a reasonable time, not to mention the difficulty of turning up in my cycling gear all hot and sweaty. Besides, not a good use of the tax payer’s money to have me cycling around like that. A humble telephone call and the meeting was rearranged. Phew.
The D***head driver
There are times when cyclists need to rise above the selfish, impatient and rude driver. I was heading up a narrow country lane on my way to work and a van stopped at the top to allow me to come all the way up without having to squeeze past him. That was nice of him. What was less pleasant was a man in a car behind gesticulating in a certain D***head and looking somewhat irate. Surely we all must have time to allow other road users to be courteous towards each other. How sad but how common.
A highlight on my return
I left the office at 4.30pm, almost at dusk. Quite a fast ride and I love those little country lanes and hills around Whitwell, Preston, Breachwood Green etc. It was a real joy riding briskly through those lanes, enjoying the quiet, resting countryside. I had the usual ride through Luton and picking up the general cycling route through a new connecting road to the railway station concourse (still no signs for cyclists!). Once on the Busway cycle path coming into Dunstable it was dark and to my astonishment I saw some fireflies. Perhaps a small group of two or three dancing as they flew around each other – wow I’ve never seen them there! In February too!
This ride turned out to have its challenges once again. Technical problems, cramp, snotty motorists. Still can’t help but think what great fun it was though! This serves as another reminder of how great cycling can be, inspite of some challenges. Just as I had some unexpectedly nice rides in January, February is getting off to a fun start – or at least that’s they way I see it (being the eternal optimist!
One last thing, thank you to Barry for offering to give me a lift home!