Thursday, 17 May 2012

So cold.....

Last night there was a ferocious storm here. The house was battered by hail stones the size of golf balls - I thought Tiger Woods was practising in the garden. Then the hail turned to rain, the sky was almost black, foreboding and slightly scary, not at all like May should be. Then this morning I've woken to a frost - it really seems more like winter in terms of temperature. That said at least the sun has made a brief appearance, for a short moment I thought it looks like being a beautiful day. And some might say it is - but not great for cycling. The sky has turned to a muddy grey mess again, the wind is sharp and stinging and rain is just around the next corner. I put my shorts on first thing but after venturing outside to take out some rubbish realised that I'd made a foolish error. It's long trousers again - and thick socks.

I set off slowly - there's a headwind that makes any idea of speed futile. Much better to plod along and wait for a direction change on my route that will make pedalling easier. We set off for France in a few weeks' time - I'm so far behind schedule in terms of preparation and fitness that I feel grumpily annoyed - I blame the weather but I really must try harder! There's a glance of the sun again, peeping through the gunmetal greyness, but the wind is cold and the tree branches rattle as I pass. One of the great delights of cycling is watching the seasons unfurl across the countryside. I moan about the vagaries of the weather but the way the year constantly morphs from winter to spring, summer to autumn and onwards, unconsciously underpins all our hopes and memories. People in the Caribbean don't get this - the weather and foliage are always the same, there are no anchoring points in the year. The months merge together in an abundance of sunshine with nothing to mark the passage of time. Right now I wish I was there.

Onwards then - and the effort has warmed me slightly but my hands and feet are still cold. It's one of the rides that sees my mind drifting to strange corners - I was wondering how many words have been spoken today?. How many words uttered by all the people alive and awake in the world between, say, 8.00am and 10.00am this morning? - It would be a lot, like counting grains of sand on a vast beach - then I wonder what happens to those words? - where do they go, the sound waves, the energy, the fleeting moments of time.........

My route today covered about 14 miles - Up the hill to Bosworth, down the hill on the other side and then turn round at the island and back up the Hill into Bosworth again. Then head out of Bosworth as if on the way home towards Newton Burgoland and up the hill to the Carlton turn - then the final hill from Congerstone to Barton in the Beans - quite a hilly route.

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