Monday, 29 September 2014

Suffolk .... on the old bike

The blonde and I spent a few days away. Starting with a visit to Cambridge and a pleasant walk around the city centre culminating in an excellent refreshment break at "The Pint Shop'. The hotel we stayed at was, sadly, disgraceful - we left early the following morning deciding that breakfast was too risky.

Our ultimate destination was the Suffolk coast around Southwold - a place that warrants repeated visits. We had booked a couple of nights at The Bell in Walberswick - a proper old pub with good rooms and reasonable food and beer. I'd decided to bring along my old bike - I mean my really old bike - I haven't ridden it for a couple of years probably and I had to spend half an hour working to free the front brake which had rusted up. That done, some air in the tyres and we were good to go - The blonde was riding her old sit-up-and-beg Raleigh - ideal for Suffolk with a basket on the front to carry wine from the Adnams shop!

Once again the mild weather was a delight - and made for easy spinning through the village up towards the church and then following the bridle path down to the river, across the bridge to the harbour and up the road past the golf course and the water tower and into Southwold. My old bike felt really good, comfortable and totally all that was needed. I had a back pannier on the rack so that I could carry any purchases and spending the day under our own steam was rewarding.

On the morning of our last day I popped out for a ride before breakfast - the same route through to the seaside at Southwold but a little quicker than the pooling we did the day before. I've a feeling to ride my old bike more - I've really enjoyed it - even though its heavy and cumbersome, it feels smooth an comfortable - the gears are mountain bike ratios - so uphills are relatively easy even though progress is slow. I wonder as I ride back for breakfast - maybe I should think more about a touring set up - an old steel bike with panniers, not so much speed orientated - more about pleasure, comfort and distance - perhaps not going the whole-hog with tents and cooking equipment - but certainly a week touring round utilising b&bs and pubs would seem like a reasonable challenge?

Mmmmm - maybe I'll look into that a bit more - more details to follow!

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