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Archive for the ‘Cycling’ Category

Back on the Bike

I have Mondays off these days, which is a wonderful opportunity to pack up some cereal bars and a couple of maps and head off on my bike into the day. I love my solitude, and somehow the space gained from the world when cycling alone through the countryside is the perfect antidote from the often overwhelming crowds of life.

York’s surrounding countryside hosts a fantastic web of country lanes to be explored; some are hardly wide enough for a car, but perfect for cyclists who can zip freely around the lanes, swerving around corners and leaving tummies behind atop steep descents (while practising appropriate levels of road safety, of course!).

The freedom to jump on a bike and cycle off for a day, a few hours, or even an hour before or after work, is extremely precious to me. It’s something I took for granted when I first lived in York, but when I left this city for apartment living (bikes kept in pieces, 2 storeys from the ground) in an area with busy dual carriageways, it soon became apparent that a large chunk of my lifestyle had been left behind. Now I intend to make as much of I can of where I live!

There is so much out there to find, so much to be explored. It doesn’t fit to be afraid of seeing what’s around the corner, what can be discovered with two wheels, a map and a bag of energy bars and puncture repair equipment. There is such freedom in fresh air and rolling fields. So much satisfaction in reaching tops of steep hills, and so much pleasure in rolling back down the other side.

I’m increasing my distances, slowly, impatiently. I’m nervous of something going wrong when I’m too far from home, all naive recklessness of last year’s solitary adventures abolished for a more careful, more informed approach. In time I’ll get my hill strength back, and with it, I hope, a bit more confidence to tackle some of the more challenging roads that I long to revisit.

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