This gallery contains 5 photos.
As I sat here this afternoon looking out at the driving cold rain and huddling a bit closer to the fire it was hard to imagine that just a few hours earlier I was feeling spring in the air. The … Continue reading
Riding the lanes with Dad and dog.
Doesn’t get any better!
After its winter break the Belgian cycle touring season kicked off again on the first weekend of March. Unlike the UK where I have done most of my cycling the clubs here don’t ride through the winter.
So this means that the March rides are a bit if a “get to know you” and find out who spent the winter doing the kilometres and who were doing the kilogrammes. And it brings a little trepidation, a slight return of cyclingclubaphobia until I have checked that that I can fit in to the club.
I missed the first two weeks in Taipei so this was my first ride of the year with my ambition to drop into group 2 and hide quietly in the slipstream. With the hazy sunshine I was optimistic that there might be a good few riders out so I could chose my level. And wow – 75 starters resplendent in the new club kit.
There were about 35 in group 2 and my hopes worked out quite well, because in a stiff breeze the enthusiasts that had been riding regularly were happy to take the lead, and the big lads provided what might less politely be called a solid wall of Belgian beef that provided excellent shelter!.
Wonderful spring day, I could have stopped and taken hundreds of views of blossom and open fields as we skimmed the open countryside. In Nivelles the splendid Church of St Gertrude was ringing out its bells with great energy as if to welcome us, or just to celebrate the day.
Good to have the first club ride under my wheels.
Sunday in February 2014
The same weekend at the same place last year.
At this stage of last year’s winter we still had two months to go before the snow stopped. As newcomers to Belgium it was quite a shock to the system. And as a cyclist it meant lots of frustration.
But this weekend we were out in the sunshine, almost without hats and gloves. I had the great pleasure of showing a friend round the area and we ended up soaking up some sum and a small beer at one of my favourite cafes at Chateau Solvay.
Along, so it seems, with many others who got the message that the outdoor season has started. The wildlife certainly thinks so, the birdsong seems to have lifted several decibels in the mornings.
Oh gosh I hope this lasts, my system craves warm riding, not worrying about hitting ice, light mornings, no gloves………………….