Monday, 24 March 2008

Some riding...

...and a lot of suffering. The ride on Tuesday was cut short due to my chest not liking the sub-zero air I was forcing into it as I puffed up the side of Prestcott Hill Climb course having already ridden from 'Nam to Gretton. I felt bad about bugging out as I was looking forward to a blast over Cleeve and a nice pint in the pub afterwards.

Fridays ride started from the Killkenny car park and the group took in 18 windswept, cold and muddy miles. The 34:18 seemed like a monster track gear, and Becca's Thursday afternoon jaunt over Cleeve had taken the wind out of her sails. It was such a tough ride in bad conditions I didn't take one photo and finished off a whole bag of Harribo towards the end just to keep going. To say that 6weeks off the bike and a chest infection has effected my performance might be an understatement! We made it back to the car and only missed out the last gravel track descent and road climb. The rest of the afternoon was spent relaxing and eating, the effort to go to the pub was just too much!

The frame bags are proving really good and despite a few "nice kite" remarks the issue with side winds is pretty much non-existent even in the 35mph gusts on Friday. Becca can pack in a 750ml bottle, jacket, tools, pump, tube and camera in her bag and I can fit all that plus winter gloves, gillet and more snacks. The one thing I am re-evaluating are the bar mounted bottles which due to the drop-bar set up are pretty near my face when I duck under branches and have a tendency to start jumping out over rough ground. Some cold setting seems to have removed the "ejector bottle" problem but I am thinking about a 2l water rucksack so I can ditch the bar bottles and the one in the bag. As much as I hate lots of stuff on my back I think I can manage a basic camelbak with just water and £££ in it.

I still have to conduct a full test-pack for my bivvi gear (both basic S20ON and longer trips) but as the ride today is not until 4pm I guess I might do it now.

FoD pictures to follow.

Alex

Friday, 14 March 2008

Finally

The bags have arrived and I stole a few moments at lunch time to snap some pictures out side of the shop. Antibiotics are slowly making a difference but work has not helped with a stressful two-computer upgrade to RMS v2.0 and all the MySQL / Networking / Microsoft headaches involved. Oh, and now Becca is ill :(

No riding until probably Tuesday and then definately the Easter weekend.

Can't wait!

Alex





































Thursday, 13 March 2008

Life on hold...

I am back to work just about although I am still pretty rough until the Corvonia and Ibuprofen kick in. Went to the Dr's today and ended up with some Amoxycillin 250mg which should clear up the nasty chest infection plus the nausea and blocked ear that came with it! For some one who is in pretty good health for decades at a time the start of 2008 has been a bad one. With luck this should be the last of it.

Still waiting on the frame bags. They are in the UK, Gloucester even, but Parcel Farce are living up to their name. First the site said they tried and failed to deliver them on Monday...not true as the shop was open and no big red truck turned up. So yesterday evening I re-scheduled delivery for today and rode the bike in so I could fit it straight away (I even got up early to fit the heli tape while I was having breakfast!) No dice. Now the on line lie generator is showing "HELD - Awaiting payment of charges" Now no one has seen the letter with the £x listed on it and the 13 digit number so I can pay it online and get the bags moving the 10miles from the depot to me, despite the insitance that it has been sent (by which carrier...just guess!).

I rang the depot and got through to a guy who how after a few false starts and confusion seemed to intimate that the parcel would be with me tomorrow and I could pay with a business cheque (best dig out the Solly cheque book and transfer some £££ into the account) So I will await the delivery tomorrow and if not I am tempted to pop round the depot and start kicking off as the "Express service" has just doubled in time scale with 50%+ of it being spent sitting on a shelf half an hour away!

One good thing that has kept me sane are the recent long posts by mc on his blog, great to see he is getting back into the writing thing and that 700see is finally on its way! Lots of good stuff to while away some time with so check it out. (Link on the right ---> )

OK, enough chesty-cough angst and patience deficit.

Alex

Friday, 7 March 2008

Still here...

...when its all working. The medication that is! I have been struck down by a nasty bout of man-flu and can only function when the Ibuprofen, Strepsils and Hot toddy are in pharmacological alignement :( Driving have been going well with the test at the end of April booked and some more 2hr lessons penned in for the next few weeks.

No shots of the revived bike yet as I am too shaky to ride it anywhere to get some good shots (like the park at the end of the road!) I should have the Carousel bag soon...tomorrow would be nice and will get some in-situ photos done ASAP. I have stolen these from Jeff's Flickr account, go and have a look at the sweet stuff he sews.

More next week

Alex
















Becca's mini frame bag for her small 29er. Note the custom daisy logo (the bikes name)
















My much larger twin compartment bag complete with waterproof lower zip to keep the tools dry :)