Ye reap what ye sow

Days to go to Tour Ride 2010: 7

Its harvest time here at Chez AbandonedBicycle.  Mrs AB and I have spent a productive and, for once, relaxed morning on the allotment. Its been a bumper harvest this year.  For weeks we have been munching our way through a glut of variously sized courgettes and are quite glad that these have come to the end for another year.  The runner beans have been in full swing though today seemed to be the end of them and as I type, Mrs AB is de-stringing and topping-and-tailing several bags full ready to freeze.  We have enough spuds to keep a small Irish village through any future famine.  And our Squashes have been prolific.  All in all we have plenty to keep us going as the nights and weather draw in for another year.

Also drawing in is the big day of the Tour Ride.  7 days to go, not including today.  By the accounts of the many training plans I’ve seen I was meant to get in one last long ride this weekend.  Well, cest la vie, it’s not happened.  Whilst I could get (and in all honesty have got) worked up about this I am trying my best to resist.  In fact yesterday was a day of continual fluidity as plans changed constantly, partly in response to the ineptitude of Halfords to provide correct information both on their website and in their store, and partly down to our old friend the weather.  Looking out of the window it is meant to be raining. With that forecast I went out yesterday to avoid the wet yet again.  Needless to say it isn’t raining now but it sure did yesterday instead.  And after a confrontation with tweed wearing, fancy 4×4 driving, “country sport” middle-aged man on mobile phone (yes, I said on Facebook and Twitter yesterday and I reiterate it again toady – 2 fingers to you too!) it wasn’t the best. But nor was it the worst.  It was 30 miles more under the belt and its amazing how I seem to tick of those miles with more ease.  That in anyone’s book is accomplishment.

And so to my news from last week.  With my charms and the good looks of my brother I have wangled a VIP start at the Tour Ride.  So a huge thank you to Sara from the organisers, Paul and I now have maximum daylight hours to complete the route.

In the next few days I’ll provide some more details of the route and following discussions with the other half of the team try and work out the times we will be at various points.  There will be no excuses for not coming out to see us! ;o)


The Great Beyond

I found relaxation here

I found relaxation here

This weekend came and went but not without revelation – I can relax.  And what’s more the feeling is great.  Despite a somewhat hectic Sunday catch up on the allotment (which will, I hope, soon take on the look of a pottager’s garden with all the plants now in) Mrs AB and I headed over to the Wyre Forest for our friend Liz’s belated 40th birthday party.  We stayed at the farm pictured in a spot which couldn’t be further from civilisation whilst being so near.  It was idyllic.  There’s not much more I can or need to say – the weather was fantastic, the company was fun and the food comforting (who can deny that fish and chips one night folloed by a barbeque the next is comforting and fun?).  All in all I got to the end of Monday and had a feeling I hadn’t felt for some time of sheer relaxation and a real desire to skive from work for another day.  Unfortunately Mrs AB needed to be back more than I and so we headed on the short trip home.  So I can do it, I just need to do it some more.

And for the cycling followers – cycling to restart this weekend. I’m looking forward to it again.

Rain stop play

Not that I was even about to venture out on the bike this weekend and the rain is doing its best to scupper the best laid plans of Mrs AB and me.  The plan was to get up early this morning, hit the local garden centre to acquire some vitally needed supplies and then hit the allotment to plant out the next batch of crops and all before heading home for a “not for the faint hearted” appointment with te Giro d’Ialia.  However, as I sit here typing this, part one of the plan was delayed.  We have achieved part two of the plan and I never knew netting a) came in so many forms and b) was so costly. Part four is still booked in and I really do hope Dve Harmon was right yesterday and I don’t waste the afternoon in front of the magic box.  But part 3 has been postponed.  Much like a Test Match in England or Tennis at Wimbledon, allotment has been delayed by rain.  There seems to be a pattern to this weeks posts and probably gives you the impression I have an aversion to rain.  I could blame Mrs AB and say it is all her doing, but alas that is wrong and I too have some dislike for the wet, particularly when I know that it will involve mud which sticks to your boots worse than a Flanders field.  No, we are telling ourselves the is correct and it is merely a delay of between a few hours and tomorrow morning.  And so to use the time both wisely and recreationally.  I’ve got my place booked on the sofa and Mrs AB is making us both what she describes as a lazy lunch (beans, scrambled egg and sausage on toast) – this is all good. The bit I need to do is stay relaxed and calm.  I’m not good at relaxing. I recognise this. Its something I need to conquer in a paradoxical way. So this is the opportunity and relaxation is now today’s challenge and I’m determined to win!