A friend of mine has just bought herself a bike, she has the week off, I am free, so that makes for a perfect opportunity to take it out for its maiden voyage!...well ride! As it's been a while since she been on a bike I decided that a trip to Farnborough Village would be just perfect. It was my first destination when I started getting on my bike, my old Raleigh Jaguar!
There are several ways to get there, and I was trying to figure out which way would be best. The short sharp steeper hills, or the long steady climb, which is just one road, the A21. The plus for that route is it does have the cycle path and after the hospital we could use the shared path.
I arrived at her house about 10 ish. The weather had take a turn for the worse! The wind had picked up and the rain had started to come down again. I was hoping that it wouldn't get any worse, and maybe even the sun would come out, it had tried earlier!
I had thought that the long straight road would be the best way to get to Farnborough. I took her through our local park, and we chatted all the way through, We then turned on to Magpie Hall lane and we cycled along in silence, well this is quite a busy little road. The drivers use it for a short cut. I cycled along towards the A21, thinking that Denise was behind me. Oh Denise is my friend by the way. I looked behind me and she wasn't there! I stopped and got on the pavement and waited. I could see her as she cycled up to me! I think I must have forgotten the first time I was on a bike. Must remember to take it easy! Probably explains the riding along in silence too!
We walked the rest of the way to the A21 while she caught her breath. I told her that this time she should go in front so that I can keep an eye on me. I told her that we are going to ride all the way to Starts Hill and then we shall take a right. She started riding along the cycle path, looking quite confident even with the traffic going past.
We got to the hill and Denise had to walk. When I rode up this road I had to do it in 3 sections! Although I didn't walk, I did have to stop, catch my breath and then get going. We got to the crest of the hill and then we started again. If she can get the speed right she should zip up the other side of the smaller hill and probably not even notice it! I kept well behind her, I didn't want to put any pressure on her and just let her do it at her own pace.
It worked a charm, I saw her fly up the other hill, I called out to her to go straight ahead. I watch while she turned left! "Maybe she will get off her bike and cross over the junction on foot. It can be a bit intimidating going across this junction for the the first time on a bike! With the left hand lane turning left, you have to keep your line and go straight! Cars should know that you intend to go ahead and so not try and turn left in front of you.
I took the left hand lane so that I could join her as we crossed over, but I couldn't see her! I got off my bike and just walked a little further into Locksbottom, and leaned over and looked down the road. I could see Denise had rode down to a turnoff for the posh houses. I just stood there and pointed to the way that we should have gone! She walked back up to me laughing, saying that she though I had said turn left!
With just one more hill to negotiate we were almost there. Going down the other side was lovely, Denise was flying down. I told her to stop at the traffic lights and we will cross on foot to go through to the village. This is where we were going to stop for a coffee and cake.
Here's a picture of Denise, and our coffee and cake, Most delicious, a raspberry and white chocolate muffin!
After I took her home via Tubbenden lane, with just Tile Farm Road and Newstead Road as our challenging hills on the way back, it was mainly a down hill ride all the way home, with practise to ride along with traffic.
Most enjoyable ride. Here is Denise with her new bike, the beginnings of many a happy times cycling!
No Geeky stats as i had forgotten to bring it along!