Sunday, 31 July 2016

The amazing sore bums of Ealing

I need a new bike.

While the kids are away in Dartmoor, we have been making the most of our child free time, and went  on a really long bike rides, because that's the sort of cool people we are.  We cycled down to church (waterfowl count: 0) (distance: 2km), hung around there for a bit serving tea and biscuits, then decided to go to Isleworth to see if Halfords was open for me to test drive my new bike.  I want a mint green Pendleton bike, with a basket and space for panniers and a bell, and I can apparently get one through work, although first I have to navigate Ealing's opaque cycle to work scheme website.  Seriously.

Our church is in Hanwell, which mean little to non-Ealing based readers, and right by the Bunny Park, which is on the Brent River, which has a cycle path along side.  So we cycled down there (waterfowl count: some moorhens and some coots) until we hit the Grand Union Canal, and then down to Brentford.  (waterfowl count: many moorhens, many coots, one heron)  From Brentford, we went through Syon Park, along the river and all the way to Isleworth. (waterfowl count: lots of seagulls) (distance: 9.5km)

Anyway, I sat on the bike, rode around the shop, had a fun time arguing with my husband about how many panniers I need, then we went to Richmond.  I do not like Richmond.  It is full of people wearing Fat Face and red trousers and braying and that makes me irrationally angry, so we did not stay in Richmond very long.  (waterfowl count: most seagulls and IDIOTS) (distance: 3.52)  We cycled back to Kew, again along the Thames, on a very, very bumpy, narrow path, with lots of people and nettles and thistles and things.  (distance: 6km)(waterfowl count: don't know, too busy avoiding joggers, dogs and other cyclists)

Kew is not quite as ghastly as Richmond, but it does have its share of idiots, although by this stage, I was really hungry and just a bit grumpy, and after the third rejected pub, I suggested that we just go and GET A SANDWICH FROM SAINSBURYS HURRY UP I AM STARVING, but we went to the pub on Kew Green and it was lovely, and I had a vegetarian Wellington thing, which is something I want to make now - it looked really easy, roasted veg in pasty, what's hard about that?  Famous last words?  (waterfowl count: a family of swans including teenage cygnets)

So then I made the cardinal error of looking at my Runkeeper statistics for the month, and by walking, running and cycling, I'd managed to cover 177 km, so obviously we had to cycle home along the canal the long way.  Turns out the long way is a very, very long way, and now my bum is really quite sore.  I think I'll be adding a pair of padded cycling shorts to my order when I buy my bike, and I really need to wear a sports bra when cycling on rough ground.  That would have been a very severe wardrobe malfunction.  (waterfowl count: at least 50 swans including some on their own (sob), two families with teenagers and two groups of at least 15 adults, tiny baby mallards with their mum, baby coots (so cute), baby moorhens (cute and so ugly), four herons, one flying cormorant)(distance: 25.5 km)

Percentages: (idea nicked from the terrifically funny Belgian Waffling)

25% adrenaline from cycling
25% sore bum (ditto)
10% joy of swans and other wild life
10% sunburn
5% gin

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