Sunday 31 December 2023

I'm back! My last ride of 2023

Well, you may well be rather shocked at this post but I am back. I felt it only fitting to end the year with a few words about my last cycle ride of 2023. What a year it has been! 

Friday saw me join a few of the lovely Friday night ride to the coast peeps for a gentle ride around London with not particular theme or purpose. So, I saddled up and headed off to the start at Hyde Park Corner to be there at just before 18:00. My cycle to the start was only about 6.5 miles and should have taken a gentle paced 40ish minutes. Because everyone in London seemed to be out, it took over an hour. (In addition I have ever seen so many of those bicycle delivery people)!

Thankfully I made it to the start in good time and said hello. I was particularly pleased to see Geoff on his rather fine Flame Lacquer. It has been ages since I saw him and it was lovely catching up 

Our ride leader and all round good egg Nick set off more or less exactly at 18:00 and we headed along Hyde Park on South Carriage Drive and eventually down Queens Gate and South Kensington. 

We cycled along the King's Road - which for me at least had changed a great deal over the years - and then over Wandsworth Bridge. 
Geoff in a rather fine cycling top

From there we cycled through the first of many council estates passing Battersea Power Station. This area has been completely transformed over the last few years and in addition to lots of shops, everything seems to be luxury flats. It was a stark contrast to some of the areas where I was glad of safety in numbers and an ability give the Brompton a turn of speed if needed!

We ended the ride at a pub near Tower Bridge. I did not bother stepping inside as I don't drink. Geoff was much the same and after saying goodbye we headed our separate ways. My journey back was a similar story to the journey to the start. It took ages! Added to this and perhaps ill advised, I decided to cycle up Swain's Lane. This was a bad idea for two reasons.  First, my poor right knee was telling me NO! Secondly, Swain's Lane at night! I am not superstitious in any way but if you are ever in London and go there after dark when most sensible people are in bed, you might understand what I mean! 

Well, 2023 has been interesting! I hope that 2024 sees me on more rides. (I have been cycling but have not been blogging about it). Wishing you all a Happy New Year and that 2024 is healthy and happy for you. 

Until next time, look after yourself people!

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