Wednesday, 19 December 2012

A ride to the Doctors.....

My run up to Chistmas is a hectic one this year. I am employed, until Christmas Eve evening, taking photographs of families visiting Santa in his grotto and posing with the reindeers. It's a good job and the visible thrill on the faces of the young (and sometimes old) is a constant treat. But this morning, before my alloted start time at the Winter Wonderland at Conkers, I needed to make my annual trip to see the doctor - get a check-up and make sure things are as they should be - blood-pressure is an issue for me so I was hoping things would be okay. I decided to cycle there - although it was damp and dreary, the prospect looked and felt reasonable.

I headed out on a vaguely circular route, well wrapped up against the fresh morning chill. I rode up through Bagworth and round to Thorton before heading for Newbold Verdon. It's a lumpy circuit and the hills soon warmed me. It has been a while since I've been out - my legs felt the strain, especially on any terrain other than dead flat. There was a vapourous softness to the light as I pedalled through open country, the trees in the distance seemed far away, the mistyness giving them distance and smudging their form into the grey sky. The big oak trees on the horizon stand with an extraordinary savage solitude, with the broader woods at each side looking like the discarded black pelt of some wild beast thrown raggedly alongside. As I approached the village and the surgery, the sky transforms itself. There is sunlight and suddenly from the gloom emerges brilliant blue and copper tones, wild and soft by turns. I cycle past a row of cottages and the bright sunlight blinks at me from between the roofs. There is a sutry milkiness to the shrubs and borders as I pass them, and I notice a couple out with their dog further along the road.

My visit to the doctor was a short one - blood pressure check - fine, a quick probe with a stethoscope, fine - weight check - not so good - an increase, which will need to be rectified before London to Paris!!
Soon I was heading back - the route seemed even hillier than the outward journey but it was nevertheless enjoyable. 15 miles in all - not a great distance - but it felt just right.

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