Saturday, 24 December 2016

Christmas Eve Cracker!

It's the most wonderful time of the year...well not really for cycling but hey we soldier on through the winter. Today we got to ride on Christmas Eve and dressing up was compulsory! I decked Clive out with antlers, tinsel and a couple of baubles. I also strapped on some helmet antlers too!

Image may contain: 1 person, bicycle and outdoor

Image may contain: one or more people, bicycle and outdoor

Someone commented that my bike had testicles and one of our group today actually said "I love your balls Rich!" I won't embarrass her by revealing who said that!!! I'm amazed they didn't fall off or smash because they were swinging around and banging together all ride long.

The route today was the Oundle classic. Not a tough route and one so well ridden that many people know the way without GPS assistance. As I arrived at the shop it was clear that some big efforts had been made. We had santa hats, tinsel, antlers, other headgear etc.

Steve with his tiny balls and strap on Santa

Samta Pendred who got pretty hot!

We set off in one group on damp heavy roads with a tailwind. Steve suffered a puncture but otherwise our spin through to Oundle was uneventful. Whilst waiting in Brigstock a lady banged on her window and wished me Merry Christmas. I was taken aback then remembered I was on a bike with Tinsel, Baubles and Antlers!!! I'd like to say I got used to that but the following was a recurrent thought process...First voice in my head: what they looking at? Second voice: You , yer pillock, you're on a bike that looks like someone sicked Christmas all over it...First voice: Oh yeah...

Dirty Santa

It was lovely to ride with Louis Spence today

The ride through to Aldwinkle from Oundle was much tougher as the wind took effect. I always struggle in the wind as a bigger rider because I'm about as aero as a brick! Also increasing drag was my overall Christmassyness! Antlers create drag and the balls out back were acting like an anchor! Not even jelly babies or my special drink (Big Dave's Blue Product,) could pep me up. Whilst I'm making excuses, anyone who heard my coughing in the shop after the ride will know I wasn't 100%. Also of note in Oundle was the clear winner of the Andy Pendred jogger of the day. She greeted us with enthusiasm then ran off smartly when it became apparent how cheeky we are.

At Aldwinkle, near the non-historic church, despicable Neil took a tumble, whilst stationary. You can just see him getting back up in the background. Serves him right for making no Christmas effort. As you can imagine there was a complete lack of sympathy or any offer to help! So the Mark Baird Cockwomble of the ride award goes to Neil. 

Alison on the other hand did make an effort and I particularly liked her Santa Homer socks! Alison was struggling even more than me today and it is to her credit she kept going. We did adhere to rule #1 even after she begged us to stop waiting for her and an arrangement was made, some of the lads just wouldn't leave her behind.

Sam Pendred was amazing in his Santa suit. Samta was clearly very hot in the onesie. Andy, his almost funny, treacherous Dad, had told him to wear shorts underneath which was clearly reverse psychology to guarantee Sam put on full length bib tights for added toastiness!

Back at the shop the banter continued to flow. Some of it repeatable but I can't remember that bit! Mince pies were provided by Andre's wife. Nat was over enthusiastically hugged by everyone before it was manly handshakes and Merry Christmases all round!

There's lots of riding planned over the Christmas break for those fortunate enough to get the time off. I'm looking forward to getting some quality miles in and hopefully an off road trip to Cannock Chase. If I'm lucky I'll get out for an hour tomorrow too.

Whilst my inexpert training on rollers continue, I enjoyed the GCN Christmas special the decorations people have made from bike parts is truly amazing. So if you want to, check it out here!

Okay that's it. If everything goes to plan the New Years Eve blog will be an absolute smasher. I'll be establishing my New Years Cycling Resolutions as well as all the usual nonsense.

Merry Happy Pedaling Christmas

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