how times have changed

Whilst cycling to the station the other morning, I stopped at a set of traffic lights, when after about a minute it dawned on me that it is very quiet – eerily so. I knew it is Christmas time and there is not a lot of traffic on the roads, but I was also aware of some cars behind me, but now … nothing.

Turning around there they were, all four of them, not making a sound.

Fairly new cars all featuring stop-start technology.

just one of those strange moments

unceremonious dismount

Friday one week ago, all was well with the world, the sun was shining, the birds were singing, I was just setting off on a quick 15 miler and it wasn’t too hot.  It had all the makings of a beautiful day.

I coast up to the traffic lights and catch up to one of my friends who is second in line, tap on his window and catch up for 30 seconds or so.

I see the light is about to change, so I say cheers and push off, only thing is, I am totally in the wrong gear, I hadn’t bothered to shift down, as I normally do, no problem, just push harder.  First car is gone and I’m on my way, one revolution, two revolutions, then nothing…  the most unreal feeling in the world pedalling hard and next second pedalling fresh air.

The bike I use for commuting is quite compact, i.e. I am normally seated quite upright, and with me standing and stomping on the pedals my centre of gravity was forward of my handlebars.

In Afrikaans they have a wonderful saying for what happened next. helmet, poepol, tekkies, literally translated means helmet, arse and trainers, in that order, and over the handle bars, but hey “that’s just the way I roll” 😉

Needless to say there was thankfully no major damage to myself (not counting my pride in front of my buddy), just a bit of bruising and some skin off the elbows, and I ALWAYS wear full finger gloves.  The bike now unfortunately has a totally disintegrated shifter, not sure if that was me hitting it or the bike landing on the ground.

This has left me to ponder the importance of bike maintenance, and by letting it slip I was potentially becoming a hazard.  The chain has been stretched for a while now and the only issue to date has been when going over very bumpy terrain, it would jump a tooth and make me think “I should really fix that”.

I have been putting off getting it replaced because I was looking into getting a cyclocross bike for commuting, and didn’t want to waste the money on the old bike (well over 20 years old and weighs a ton)

So another lesson learned,

Till next time and keep the rubber side down.

2012 in numbers

I cannot believe that I haven’t posted anything since July, which sucks.

But I finally got a moment to have a look at my stats for 2012

Count:
203 Activities
Distance: 2,134.57 km
Time: 157:27:07 h:m:s
Elevation Gain: 33,649 m
Avg Speed: 13.6 km/h
Avg HR: 105 bpm
Avg Run Cadence:
Avg Bike Cadence: 75 rpm
Calories: 101,685 C

Which in  54g Mars bar terms makes that about 420 – which is just over 22.5 kg of Mars bar, man that’s a lot of chocolate 😉

I treat a daily commute as one activity i.e. two laps, one to the station and the other home.

So, this now becomes a target for this year, which is a good thing.

nothing takes the pace off as quickly as

a face full of windscreen wash 😉

So there I am in a rush for the train, minding my own business and cycling with gusto (gasping for air like a fish out of water) when a VW Golf comes past and the driver cleans the windscreen.

Next thing I know my breath is taken away by the strong smell of screen wash – really glad I wear cycling glasses, that would have stung…

that was a first for me

the curse of the second mobile

Got on the train this morning and as we pulled off you could hear someones music playing.

Man they’ve got to be deaf, if not now, they soon will be…

Eventually commuter A gets up and asks whoever’s music it is to “please turn it down!”

All she gets is a few blank stares – then “c’mon it’s got to be someone’s!”.

“it could be coming from someone’s bag” replies commuter B, reaching for his bag and searching fruitlessly around in it.

“Well it’s not mine, I’m listening to ?????” replies commuter A while reaching for her bag.

“OH NO!!!!, it is coming from my bag” came the mortified reply

“sorry everyone!” she yells as she turns her second mobile (cellphone) off

I look around to a sea of smiling faces.

Thanks for the chuckle 😉