What a day! Such fun, so relaxing, such a long time for such a short ride! But still, such a brill day. I must admit, I wasn't 'feeling it!' It was Bims boyfriends birthday, and we all met up last night in the local pub. I thought it could get messy as we walked over, there was going to be no 'I'm just having a half tonight!' So this morning, well, shall we say I was a little delicate.
In fact I was probably suffering from the 'baby germs' that some of the kids have had this 24 hour throwing up bug, and I am sure I am suffering! At least that is what it feels like! nausea was deffo going to win today! So you can imagine how pleased I was when the Old Boy said "I don't feel well, head ache and just not feeling it" Ooo, I don't mean that I am pleased he is sick!.....but I am pleased that our ride is cancelled.
I called up Bims to tell her, and she was not having! She was like a kid, "Oh no, you gotta come, you gotta come" She wore me down, I ran out of excuses to give her, even the Old Boy was saying, "go on, go!" So I had not choice but to go get ready. I don't like driving and our bike rack wont fit on Bim's car so we opted for the train, because todays ride was from Margate to reculver, and back!
The morning was pretty glorious actually, and I was thinking "Maybe I can 'feel it' but then riding down Southborough lane there was a very fresh bit of 'road kill'. It was in such a position that cars had no option but to run over it, again and again and again! I got near to the bloody squishy mess just as another car did, and it ran over it. The sound of the tyres running over the poor flatten fox was awufl, I heard the 'shlur' as the tyre came up from the fox! That feeling of nausea came back with avengance! This is going to be a tough day!
I met Bims at the rail station and we got our bikes on the train.....along with everyone else....and their kids....and mothers in law......and probably the dogs bikes as well! What is it, why are these people not riding to their destination, they have got bikes?! Oh, yes, so do I!. Well, I'm different, I am going all the way to Margate!
There was only standing room, with people squeezing by bikes, and looking a little miffed at anyone that looked like a cyclists! Bims and I thought it would be a good idea to get out at every stop to try and find the disabled spot where we can secure our bikes! It took two stations to 'door hop' but when we eventually got there.......there were more bikes! We decided to just stay where we were and just play bike shuffle when people walked past!
The station at Margate is right by the sea side! Perfect, just what I need, maybe we can just go down to the beach and chill, which seemed like a pretty good idea really, as there was some kind of party atmosphere going on! Great sounds, loads of people, dancing! I could do that! But Reculver called us, or at least it called Bims, so we made our way towards our destination.
The route is 99% off road but the path is laid in concrete sections so going over the joints was tough on my backside thats for sure. But the more we cycled along the more I started to feel so much better! Ok the headache was there, but being out in the fresh sea air was just perfect! The smell of the seaweed, a warm breeze blowing (in our faces, but I could live with that) and a sudden urge for cockles came over me. That was one thing I was looking forward to, cockles by the seaside.
I was hoping to find a cockle stall on the way down to Reculver, there must be a least one, surely. We rode on side by side, chatting and just enjoying being out. We had to get off our bikes when we got to the 'beach hut' sections. These little 'sheds' do amuse me, and I am sure it is such a quaint essentially British thing. Little huts in a row, painted some lovely colours, where people go and sit in in front of! Some of them are quite elaborately decked out, with little kitchen units, a kettle and a cooker! Fantastic. Some really are like a shed, just storage for all their chairs and tables, and one of them even dragged out a disgusting looking sunbed mattress!
Even the bits of walking was doing me good. I am glad I came out! I could see the towers of the Church at Reculver getting nearer, I still hadn't found any cockles or winkles yet, but I knew I would be able to grab a sandwich at the pub when we reach our destination. It was on the last few meters that I got a puncture! The towers were there, taunting me, Bims had gone up ahead, and I had to get off and walk!
|Wheres (the) Wally|
She eventually noticed that I wasn't behind her and came to see where I was! I told Bims to carry on towards the Towers and I will see her at the pub! I think I will need a pint before I fix my tyre! I walked the rest of the way. A chap that we had passed on a bike said, "Oh know, you were doing so well, you even passed me" and then I told hi, "I've got a puncture!"
|I got my cockles at Reculver!|
It didn't take long to get to the King Ethelbert pub and I chained by bike up against Bims bike and went inside to find her. She was at the bar, waiting to be served! Perfect! We ordered some lunch and we outside to find a table with shade!
Lunch was great, we chatted along with some great people at the pub, and then it was time to fix my bike! Bims hasn't changed a tube since she was a child, so I let her watch and even help out a little. I amused me when she put the tyre on though, she put it on so that the tyre went over the rims of the wheel, both sides! Bless her. There were a couple of very helpful chaps that were able to lend me their pumps so that I could inflate the tyre, saving me a gas canister!
Then it was the ride back. With refueling done and rehydration done we were pretty relaxed and cool, and deciding that they only way to ride back to Margate was to sing all the way as loud as we could. Do you think we could remember all the words to any of the songs we started singing? No, we couldn't! We couldn't even think of songs to sing let alone sing all the words! But we did have a few half songs, Billy Don't Be A Hero, Pack Up All Your Cares And Woe, Smile, Maybe It's Because I'm A London to name but a few! And I am sure at some point we did actually harmonise quite well!
Getting back to the beach at Margate we decided to find a pub for one last refreshment before getting the train back. We found a spoons just along the front and again we started chatting to some great people, locals 'born and bred' they said they was! Also in town were the Millwall supporters out for a beano! What bunch of noisy......young gentlemen! they were! They tried to hitch up a flag, 'Millwall Treaty, we are evil" Well, I wouldn't disagree with them!
Back on the train now and again there are a lot of people with bikes going back home! We managed to secure our bikes on the disabled part of the train with a bit of shuffling around with other passengers with buggies! We share the space with two other cyclist, and chatted with them all the way to Bromley South, Matt and Paul! They had been riding around Whistable and other places. It's amazing just how much just having something in common can start a conversation. We didn't just talk about bikes and routes and riding!
A couple of real nice people! In fact all of the people we chatted to today were brill! As Bims said on her facebook page earlier "Who says British People are not friendly and sociable" All though Paul on the train originally came from Zimbabwe! But still, he is here now in Britain, and loving it!
It's amazing how time flew by on the way back home. We had to shuffle our bikes around again as our was at the back of the pack and we were getting off first!
Such a brilliant day out, a long brilliant day out, for such a short brilliant ride! Loved it, and I am deffo feeling it now!
Westbrook Ward Running by moosh001 at Garmin Connect - Details