As a philosophical question: If a Windmiller falls off on the way to the ride and no one is around to hear it, does it count towards ride statistics? After last week’s very much witnessed involuntary diesel induced dismounts, Alan’s pre ride mud induced dismount was unwitnessed but was nevertheless severe enough to force a premature abandonment and a return home for a hot bath – or at least it would have done if the luckless Alan had working heating and hot water ! One ‘incident’ that does count towards ride statistics was Brian’s rear wheel puncture close (but not close enough) to the sanctuary of the pub near the end of the ride.
In fact it became increasingly difficult as the morning went on to keep tabs on who was with us and who wasn’t: Graham hadn’t arrived in time for the pre ride gathering, arriving just at the start. Ken was collected in Newton but returned home early, Charles left the peloton early as did the somewhat sore Alan. In the end only five of us remained for lunch at the Three Horseshoes.
And so to the ride, once again devised by Jeremy. The previous blog I wrote started with the words, “It might have been above freezing, but it was still chilly, with grey skies and a keen northerly breeze.” Looks like I can reuse those words for last Thursday’s Tour de South Cambridgeshire villages. Stapleford, Great Shelford, Little Shelford, Newton, Harston, Foxton, Fowlmere, Chrishall Grange, Ickleton (where hats were ‘doffed’ outside the Old Vicarage), Hinxton, Duxford, Whittlesford, Sawston, Pampisford, Great Abington, Little Abington, Babraham were all visited en route ! As the number of riders waxed and wained, the peloton split and regrouped along the way as we wended our way along a mixture of lanes, cycle paths and even bridleways. Coffee and cakes at the excellent cafe 19 community centre in Duxford was one of the few occasions when the whole ride was together !
For those wondering about the concrete North and South roads in Great Abbington: “In the depression before the Second World War the Land Settlement Association set up a site on the southern side of Great Abington with over sixty houses and plots of land for unemployed miners mainly from the coalfields in Yorkshire and Durham. This estate now comprises privately owned properties and very few of the holdings are still used for horticulture.”
Participants for all or part of the ride were: Deborah, Jeremy, Brian, Roger, Rod, Nigel, Charles, Alan, Graham and Ken.