My normal routine had been usurped…and rear gears wouldn’t shift!
On Saturday, I had agreed to go cycling – early start – to meet up with a client and friend for my normal blast around to Kincardine Bridge. This was tragically upset by the discovery of two broken spokes on the rear wheel. I had already bought a replacement wheel, because the existing wheels on my bike were pretty ancient, but hadn’t installed it as it requires the removal of the rear wheel gear block from the existing wheel and it’s insertion onto the new wheel. Thats a daunting task for a newbie like me….
After getting the right shimano gear set removal tool, and trying for several sweat induced hours to get the gearset off the blasted wheel it just wouldn’t budge. Loving sprays with WD 40 and equally loving “taps” from me just wouldn’t shift the bugger. A quick trip to Edinburgh Bicycle Cooperative Saturday Lunchtime got me a new shimano gear block and a wander round town. I managed to get a 6 speed gear block to replace my 5 speed so I’ve even gained a gear! (For the techs, the overall gear teeth no still went from 28 to 14, so no real gain in top end speed or anything). It took me just 20 mins to get it on the wheel, the innertube and tyre on and get up everything up and running after that….why hadn’t I just done this before ????
No cycling for the rest of the day…Gah!
Other family and admin things dominated for the rest of the (Satur)day and I got quite grumpy eying the blue skies, perfect weather, high temperatures and beautiful sunshine. It seemed like everywhere I looked there was folk cycling around thoroughly enjoying the good day – and I wasn’t even out on my bike!!!! Aaargh! I had only gone through 4 weeks of excessive soakings and squelchy riding and I couldn’t get out on the best weather ever……..
Consolation ride on Sunday……
Off to haddington……..it was late before I got out the door – about 11.ooam – so I decided not to try my 76 miler in favour of something shorter. Lets go East!
Marvellous – quick shot of caffeine and carbs and I was off like a ferret up the proverbial drainpipe. Easy riding through Musselburgh and out to Prestonpans, Cokenzie, Silver Sands and on to Aberlady.
Loving the ride, loving the weather, the swish of the air, the rumble of the road, admiring the tanned lovely people sunning themselves and Pshhhhhhhhhh flat front tyre just as I got to my intended stop just beyond Aberlady. The valve had split from the inner tube…….believe me I’m never EVER going to buy the Dr sludge inner tubes again – Ive had three valve failures out of four tubes. They are rubbish quality and are literally PSSSSSShhhhh!
I took my time changing the wheel and tyre – chatting with passers by who offered sympathy and some help. One guy (fellow cyclist) even made sure I had everything I needed (I did) and to see if I needed his spare inner tube or anything?…….proper gentleman he was, bless him.
Spot of liquids and carb gel on the boardwalk overlooking the beach before I’m off over the hills to Haddington, where I can enjoy a lazy latte and ciabatta with roasted veg. Mmmmmm.
I want to be a train…
Off again – heading home – and I just LOVED the NCN cycle route 1 section that follows an old railway line from Haddington to Longniddry, which although a gravel path, is a nice long curve surrounded by shady trees. I pushed my speed up and held it at 25mph for practically the whole length of this track. I didn’t say it out loud, but inside my head I was going “chuf f chuff chuff whoohooo!” . 😉
Passing though Longniddry, I stopped at the coastline to take the photo above. Lovely.
Beautifully warm, it’s a pleasure to be cycling in shorts and t-top with warm air around – I needed a LOT more liquids though.
All told 42 miles in 2 hrs 27mins – 17.2mph average.