About Me

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Wife (to Shaun), Mother (to Danni), Dog walker of Archie the JRX, improving cyclist, reformed gym bunny, broken runner Collector of exercise DVDs & equipment. Cake is my weakness together with cider (Westons only thanks)and brandy. Noisy spectator of running & cycling events. Owner of Tribby the campervan

Monday, 4 April 2016

When Things Don't Quite Go How You Expected

The last two weekends have been very "interesting", and neither were quite what we thought they were going to be.

We were really looking forward to getting away in Tribby for Easter Weekend, even though Easter was a bit early and the nights were still dark early and there was a nip in the air.  We hadn't any time out since Australia so we were really looking forward to 4 solid days of relaxation and dog walking.  Getting Tribby ready over the couple of weeks beforehand was very exciting.  We treated the water tank, made sure the water pump and heater worked, swept, dusted and wiped so the inside was clean and gradually put the contents back in and refilled the "goodies" cupboards.
The weather forecast wasn't too favourable as we headed to Chichester - Storm Katie was heading our way, but probably not until Monday morning.  Driving out on Good Friday, especially towards Chichester, is always a bad idea but we hadn't really expected it to take nearly 3 hours to make the 50 mile journey.   We'd booked a pitch at the Camping & Caravanning Club Site at Chichester - a perfect place for walking being on the estuary.  When we arrived we had to find a supermarket - the journey took so long we decided to skip the visit to the big Tesco and instead search out the Express in the village.  Provisions purchased we headed back to Tribby - Shaun took Archie for a recce walk and I sat and read my Kindle and ate Hot Cross Buns.

The weather on Friday and Saturday morning was ok - we woke to lovely sunshine.  After breakfast we headed out to walk the footpath that Shaun had found the previous day and walk part of the Estuary.  It was quite windy at this point, funny watching the birds trying to fly across the water.

It was a lovely walk.  Back to Tribby for lunch and a bit of relaxing.   Shaun headed back out for another walk a bit later and then the weather started in earnest.   We spent the rest of the afternoon and evening watching DVDs.   We agreed to pack up on Sunday if it got any worse.  It's ok in Tribby with just Shaun and I, but having Archie with us when it's raining isn't comfortable, and not fair on Archie who just wants to have room to play.  Saturday night was a bit uncomfortable, we got woken up every time the rain started and the gusts of wind were getting worse to the extent that Tribby was swaying.  On Sunday morning, although the rain had stopped we decided to pack up and return home.  The winds forecast for the next 24 hours were 70mph - Shaun didn't fancy driving in that.  On Easter Monday we awoke to devastation - the back fence had been removed by Katie!

Later in the week I was contacted by my friend Nik asking if I wanted to join a group ride - originally 40 miles starting at the Brighton Pier.  I struggled to make the decision whether to go or not - Shaun was working on Saturday so I was on my own - having to drive there and back as well do the ride without him!  On Friday I asked Nik if she knew the route and she came back to me and said the ride was now only 33 miles  but starting from Hove Park at 7.30am, via Devils Dyke (or renamed by me as Bitch Hill).

In the past my anxiety has stopped me from taking part in these rides but I desperately wanted to get out on the bike and I needed some miles in the bank - no cycling next weekend!   So after a few moments of "nope I can't do it" I found myself in the car with kit and bike and on my way to Hove at 6.45am to meet up with the guys and girls from BTRS.   Quick safety briefing and route explanation, including where the regrouping points were and we were off!   I have no idea when but at some point between 10 and 15 miles I managed to touch my front wheel on Nik's back wheel - never a good thing when you're on a bike.  So ....... the inevitable stacking of me occurred.   Somehow, and I have no idea, I got back on the bike after a little time of being checked over by Kurt, the ride leader, and a few people who had stopped on the road.   I think my right knee and elbow took most of the impact.  We caught up with the rest of the group at the halfway point.  Short rest then back on it and headed to the hilly bit of the course - Devils Dyke.    I managed quite a lot of the hilly bits apart from the worst parts of the climb - pain was starting to kick in with my back and right hip so I couldn't ride up the worst part!  So proud of Nik though, on her first ever road ride she actually managed to cycle up the whole way - something I've not managed!

We caught up with the rest of the group at the top in the golf club car park.
Nik bringing up the rear - so proud of her

The view from Devils Dyke
The ride back into Hove was pretty fast - it's pretty much downhill all the way with two horrible roundabouts.   When we got back to the park there was hot tea and coffee and cake waiting for us - very welcome.  Having surveyed my injuries I was very lucky nothing got broken - lots of bruising and grazing.   Apparently I'm a proper cyclist now I've got road rash!
Photo by Nik Bailey - Love riding with these two!

I couldn't be more proud of this one - first proper road ride!

Checking my injuries back at the Park
My expensive arm warmer was a bit ruined

Bruised left leg the day after

Sore elbow - imagine if that had been without sleeves
The big lessons of the day - always wear your cycling helmet - I only had a small scratch and a dent from an impact but just imagine if I hadn't been wearing it.

Casualty list :-

1 arm warmer
1 pair of shorts
lots of skin
1 bottle rack
1 cycling helmet

Luckily it's my birthday in a couple of weeks !

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