Well its official. Last month was the wettest in Nelson on record. I'm not surprised and neither is any other cyclist that has got to go out in it every day. Today is weekly grocery shopping day and because Adi and I have sold our cars and because my beloved combi still sits in the workshop minus his engine we are out on our bikes with our BOB trailers getting the groceries.
Its pissing down. My friends will back me up when I say that even if I had an engine in my car I'd still make Adi do the shopping with me in the rain, after all its character forming. But my bike is beginning to complain after weeks of rain. For one thing I went into the study the other night to check up on something and wondered what the strange smell was. Later I confirmed that it was indeed my Mercian rotting. My leather seat was busy drying and on doing so filling the room with an aroma much like wet dog . My leather H/bar grips also trying to dry had swollen to a point where they were contemplating popping off the bars. They were so tight.
It's funny to think that this time last year I was cycling in Wyoming and my temperature gauge was sitting on 40 degrees centigrade! The leather washes in my grips had dried and contracted like the skin on my face and my wife was on the point of heat exhaustion behind me. She later disputed this but in any case when she kept asking me what the temperature was I thought of a number below 35. I recall relaxing in the shade at the top of a particularly steep hill only to be told by a passing motorist "Is that your partner back down there climbing the hill? She looks like she needs urgent medical attention!" I thought if it was that serious why didn't they stop and offer some help? A few minutes thinking about it and I was concerned enough to cycle back down ,once I'd stashed my BOB trailer. I have to say I've seen Adi looking better. But she was still on her feet. What a trooper.
Anyway its winter , pouring down and its easy to feel a bit discouraged about the Global Bike Race that I've entered. This time next year I will have to ride all day regardless of the weather.Most of my concerns centre around the logistics of getting Adi's Vespa scooter from one place to another.If only it was as simple as just turning up with my Mercian and BOB and just going for it. I suggested to Adi the other day that she just accompany me for bits of the trip but she'd have none of it. For her it will be a huge adventure on the Vespa and I can't blame her for that. It would be very lonely without her.
It doesn't stop me waking up with nightmares of Adi stuck ,up to her taillights in mud while crossing Bangladesh or trying to fix a puncture during a downpour in Thailand.
I've just got rain on the brain.