In a world increasingly preoccupied with throwaway materialistic things; where people are constantly busy earning money to pay for those things, or so their children can have those things;
This is the story of my dreams of travelling the world by bicycle. Because it's there. And because I dont want to die without experiencing the truly important things in life .

A sense of wonder and a sense of adventure.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

The Sunday Group Ride.

Dawn breaks and 'Niel the Wheel's' bike is ready. Actually its been ready since last night when I shined him and put his sport wheels on in anticipation. Adi didn't like the fact that Mercian was in the lounge but I had to have him on hand to give myself every help in getting out the door in time, or in fact just getting out the door.

"You wont do it". Adi said as I went to bed.

6.30 am and I'm up. "Don't try tempting me with your body sweet pea, It's cycling with the boys that I want today!" I did it! The hard part is over. I just had to throw down some creamed rice , a cup of coffee and find some matching cycle kit. After dry reaching on the rice a couple of times I'm out the door and onto the trusty stead for the 10km ride to the meet point outside the local bike shop.

My Beauty Awaits. What fun We'll Have.
I don't want to turn up too early it wouldn't do to appear to keen. So I soft pedal a bit and gauge it so that I'm there stylishly late. But not that late.

I would like to say when I got there that the front of the bike shop was packed with other riders. In fact I'd have to say that numbers were down a bit on what I remember from my previous bunch rides. I might even say I was a little disappointed with numbers. Anyway after a brief discussion on the days route and after an affirmative from those present that we all wanted a hill climb it was agreed to head to the Whangamoas. Making it a 100km day for everyone.

An Argument Ensued About which direction To Take. Niel Got His Way.
The ride out to the base of the Whangamoas is exposed to the sea breezes. Luckily the morning  air was calm as 'Niel the wheel' was having trouble getting shelter in the back of the bunch. No sooner had he worked his way back there, he seemed to find himself on the front again. Cursing at those around him to take a fair turn so that he would have time to get a Whittaker's bar down in preparation for the climb.

It was decided at the start that unofficial points would be given to the first man or women to the top. These points could be crucial for not only the ego of the rider on the day but also could secure the rider the overall prize since sprinting at the end of a Sunday group ride is certainly not cool.

On the Way to the Polka Dot Jersey.
In the end it was no contest. First to the top and the admiration from all the girls around. After such a hard fought victory it was hard to come down. But once we all had it was straight back to Richmond along the cycleways scaring as many kids and dogs as humanly possible. Sixty km/hr on the cycleway certainly feels fast! I took some rubber off the back wheel when the little girl with the ponytails pulled out without looking.(Don't their parents teach them anything these days!)

Anyone For a Drink.
Post race drinks were a quiet affair. I suppose everyone was just tired from the excesses of the day. Personally I was just looking forward to the prize giving. Knowing that I'd scored all points for the day I felt relaxed about walking away with whatever it was. Until someone suggested it should be a spot prize to be fare.

O'all right then.

What I've Won the Car!! All for Me?
Initial surprise and glee quickly subsided when I realised it was a pretty useless thing and how would I get it home on my bike anyway.

Hopefully next Sunday there might be something decent to win. But then if more people turn up it could be a bit tougher to walk away with the goods. Just my luck.

Until then then.

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