carolspage

August 28, 2011

Greece

Filed under: adventures — by carolspage @ 06:56
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I know that there have not been many cycling entries lately. I’ve been a bit distracted preparing for a trip to Greece to assist my husband in some field work. In fact, I write this sitting in our first hotel in a tiny town called Vrastama in Polygoros. (The hotel is called Viraggas and I HIGHLY recommend it if you’re in the area.)

The final preparations, making sure we have all of our documents in order, all of the maps and directions for finding the various hotels and sampling sites across the country, making sure that map of Greece is loaded into my phone’s satnav, making sure we have all of the supplies we need for the sampling and making sure we understand exactly what the researcher who is sending us to Greece needs from our samples – that’s taken up much of my time and brain space for the past couple of weeks.

It’s been an amazing trip so far – so many things that I’m doing for the first time. The woman who writes one of the blogs that I follow has started a project called 35:35 – she is determined to try 35 new things in her 35th year. (Her blog is called scannermum and when I get back home I will add a link to it here – I’m afraid I’m still working out how to use the wordpress app for my chosen tool of communication on this trip!) (UPDATE! Her blogger name is scannermum, her blog is margot-and-barbara.) I think that’s a brilliant idea – but I also think that 47:47 is a bit ambitious – especially since I’ll only be 47 for another 3 and a bit months! (Correction: I’m actually 48, not 47! Wow! My brain WAS a bit of a mess!) But I do seem to be doing many, many things for the first time on this trip. Many new things in life, really, at the moment. I’ve decided that I will start another page to this blog and as its title I will use what a friend of mine has just had tattooed on her wrist – Live Adventurously.

When I get back to the UK – back on the bicycle!

In the meantime – Kalamera!

August 18, 2011

More advice from the Under 10s

Filed under: Cycletta — by carolspage @ 06:50
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Shortly after I started this two-wheeled adventure, I got an email from my sister telling me that my niece, 6 year old Riley, had just had the training wheels removed from her bike. She too was learning to start, stop and turn.

My sister has posted video of this momentous event and it pains me that I cannot find a way to pass it along to you. I can, however, show you a picture.

My favourite clip shows her pedalling furiously up the street in front of her house. (Yes, she has mastered the riding up hill that I am still working on …) She reaches the top and gets off the bike to turn it around to go the other way. As she is making the all important pedal adjustment, she looks up to proclaim to the world

“It’s easier downhill!”

Yes, once more I am indebted to the under 10s for words to live by…

August 15, 2011

Sunday was for pedalling

Filed under: Cycletta — by carolspage @ 12:00

SUNDAY was for pedalling!

My husband and I packed the bikes up in the van and headed to Oakamoor and there, along the disused railroad tracks, I could ride.

And ride.

And ride.

I’m not sure how long I actually rode for – it was somewhere between 90 minutes and two hours.  And it was wonderful!

I’m not saying that I didn’t stop at all – I did stop. Occasionally I just needed to get off the bike for a moment or two in order to get a bit of circulation back into my backside, but that’s it. I never stopped for very long and then it was right back to riding.

It was beautiful riding through the trees and past fields. I loved the earthy, woody smell that you miss out on speeding through the countryside in a train.

We met other cyclists and some walkers – I learned to use my bell – and I learned that when you are stopping it’s good to look before you plant foot on the ground. There may be dog doo. There was dog doo.  The trainer is now clean, but that’s a toothbrush I’ll never use again!

I don’t know how far I went – the GPS on my phone wasn’t working properly. I didn’t care, it was just wonderful to be out!

After the ride

August 14, 2011

I need to do more!

Filed under: Cycletta — by carolspage @ 19:11
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Last Saturday morning I felt very strange…I couldn’t stand to be in the house…I had to be outside…I had to be on the bike.

This was very strange.  I’ve never before had this feeling that I Need To Get Out And Do Something. I mean, I’m the girl whose favourite weekend pre-hubby was a holiday weekend where I slept for three days straight (the few hours of wakefulness were spent watching movies while waiting for the pizza to be delivered).

But there it was – I was pacing around…I couldn’t sit still…I felt….squirrelly – that’s the best word for it….squirrelly.

I went to my gym and unloaded the bike.  I’d been around this field before, with my trainer. While I didn’t try The Big Hill, I did ride round the field, which gave me lots of practice turning corners (not my best thing) and more practice avoiding dogs, their walkers and other cyclists.

But I started to get frustrated. After 45 minutes of riding, it wasn’t enough to just ride back and forth, over and over again repeating the same route endlessly. I wanted to ride and see new things, new scenery.

On that day, however, I had to settle for an additional 3 mile walk with the dogs. Not bad….but not pedalling…

Ahhhh…..but Sunday…

August 4, 2011

So THAT’S how it’s done!

Filed under: Cycletta — by carolspage @ 19:43
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Thank you all for your fine weather wishes – the rain stopped long enough for me to get in some riding this evening.

We spent 45 minutes riding around a section of the 3 mile  cycle path. I’ve learned to start pedalling (without falling over), go around corners (without falling over) and stop (all together now….without falling over). I can’t tell you what it does for my confidence to not have to be picked up off the ground twice for each meter I pedal!

We even went down a hill….a BIG hill….and it was curvy….very curvy…..and I went really fast, so fast I nearly took off!

Well, that’s how fast it felt, anyway.  The reality is that in a race between me and a snail I’d probably have come a close second.

Then we had to go back UP the hill….the BIG hill.

I started, I pedalled…well, I tried to pedal. I stopped.

A word of advice to the beginners reading this – never stop on a hill!

Because that means you need to start on a hill.

And this is not good.

I tried many times to get going and failed.

It was at this point, while I was standing with my bike on the hill, trying to catch my breath that a young girl of about 4 years old came round the corner, along with mum and dad and Jack Russell terrier.

When the little girl saw me, she stopped dead and put both  hands over her mouth, as if she was trying not laugh.

She finally took her hands away from her mouth, looked at me with a big grin lighting up her face, and gave me her sagest piece of advice.

“You have to pedal!” she said.

Yes, I do, Petunia. Yes, I do.

Rain, rain, go away…

Filed under: Cycletta — by carolspage @ 14:10
Tags: , , ,

It’s raining today and it must stop.

I’ve been working with my trainer, who has been helping me get fit for Cycletta, and today is The Day.

It is The Day That We Go Out Riding Together.

I’ve ridden this lovely bicycle in bits’n’pieces, here and there, to and fro, fore and aft.  But I’ve not ridden.

Today I will.

There is a 5k cycle/footpath that begins behind the Fitness First gym that I go to and today I ride that.

Which means that the rain must stop.

Say it with me?

“Rain, rain, go away…..rain, rain, go away…..rain, rain, go away…..”

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