17 Aug 2013

14th August 2013

Wednesday 14th 60F, 15C, breezy and overcast. Went for a haircut and narrowly missed being rammed by a moron in a Volvo estate reversing straight out into the traffic without looking. What was worse is that he didn't bother to stop when I tooted the horn! Luckily I was travelling at well below the speed limit at the time. Coming back home afterwards a moron in a tarted up Golf came round a blind corner into the village at 60mph on completely the wrong side of the road! I had no idea having a haircut was so dangerous in Denmark! 23 miles fighting a fierce, gusty wind in bright sunshine. 5000 miles for the year so far.

Here's a link to images from several UK HPV race meetings including a few of Geoff Booker and his stainless steel TT trike: Geoff is in a yellow top.

Thursday 15th 61F, 16C, very windy and cloudy but sunny. It was blowing  a gale when I finally left. Going quite well with a tail crosswind until Brenderup where they were resurfacing the road. There was so much sticky tar that my tyres quickly grew a thick tread of welded-on gravel! I used up several twigs and bits of scrap wood as scrapers before I was able to ride with clean tyres. I saw a Jay in some woods. Later a Buzzard came out of the forest without looking and had a hell of struggle to get away. It was stuck under a low canopy of beech trees over the narrow road with nowhere to go except lead the way. Coming back home was into a cross headwind. Very hard work! 40 miles.

Friday 16th 64-70F, 18-21C, overcast, rather breezy. A grey day with occasional showers forecast.

I have just discovered that my blog is (sometimes) not rendered properly in IE. After years of using Firefox I now use Chrome. All seems to be well in this browser. I checked in the local library and my blog looks fine on their computer with IE. OS unknown. When I try IE at home the clouds behind a translucent border suddenly become greyed out. My brother can't see the archived post list on the right. Neither of us can see the Members list and thumbnail portraits in IE. Nor the invitation to follow my blog. I have just downloaded Firefox and it renders correctly but oversized. Fixed with Ctrl - but it insists on using and spelling checking in Danish even after I chose English UK. Guess what? Still no British English pack after all this time. The reason I gave up using Firefox in the first place. That, and the countless updates. So the text as I type is all underlined in red. A good enough reason to uninstall it again! 11 miles.

Saturday 17th 63-66F, 17-19C, light wind, overcast with occasional rain. It is supposed to clear up so I'll go out later. I had an early morning visit to the hospital to have my painful joints looked at. My shoulder has been killing me lately. It seems I probably have inflammation rather than osteoarthritis. I will be going for an ultrasound scan to confirm the diagnosis.

The multilingual plaque describes that boys were sacrificed on this mound in the bronze age. While their mothers stood on a nearby mound to watch.  The other mound has since been lost to ploughing. 

While I was there I saw a very sad sight. A forlorn, deep rim aero front wheel sitting in a bike rack with a hefty lock still around it. Somebody had obviously lost their machine to a thief who noticed that only the front wheel was secured. They should bring back hanging for bike theft. You wouldn't need many willing volunteers for the trapdoor before bike theft was massively reduced. Bike theft is not a victimless crime. Let's be careful out there!

I took a meandering route to the shops. The nasty dog at the machine station was out again and chased after me growling like a rabid wolf! Despite the headwind I wound it up to 24mph but it was still with me and even trying to overtake me. After 200 yards it gave up when it caught the scent of something on the road. Later I saw deer and a hare in the fields and several pairs of buzzards circling over woods and copses.

Typically robust Danish rural humour usually intended to mark an important birthday. This "sculpture" is sitting on the front lawn of a farm, beside a busy main road, in the middle of a village. It's not great art but shows considerable creativity in its choice of available materials.

Then, as I as was riding through a village, a little voice shouted a loud hello. I looked up to see a tiny girl of about four years of age had climbed out of the upstairs window! She was perched on a small platform on top of a high bowed window with a peaked roof! I kept her talking (loudly) while I tried to see if anyone else was in to attract their attention. She had a fifteen foot fall if she slipped! After what seemed like an age of dire warnings and questioning I heard a man's voice in the room behind her and she finally climbed back in. 19 miles.

Sunday 18th 62-67F, 17-19C, heavy overcast, very windy. The strong wind is surprising given the forecast of 20mph gusts on a 10mph base for later after a quieter start. Showers or rain are expected this morning.

After morning coffee and marmalade covered rolls and safely kitted out in my supermarket £5 orange sunglasses, to cope with the gloom, I set off for a distant garden centre.

Soon I found myself mixed in with vast numbers of racing cyclists all going the same way. It was the annual Fyn cycle ride for anybody fit enough to own a proper racing bike. Including a surprising number of girls and women. I didn't want to get in the way nor change my decided route so I chased the next group ahead up a long drag. Solitary riders tried overtake me on the next descent. Then I found myself leading a large group up the next long hill.

Nobody seemed very keen to overtake and when they did they usually had something nice to say. "Flot cykel" and "Respect" were aimed at me as I struggled to maintain their fast average pace on their lightweight carbon bikes. Each probably weighing less than my already full saddle bag. I grinned back and panted on up the next long climb with the loud roar of tyres somewhere behind me. They all seemed much faster on the descents and I was sweating heavily in my Aldi jacket and TA cap under my helmet for the expected rain. The majority were wearing only racing jerseys and shorts despite the threatening sky. They were also much more confident at riding in groups than I am. Always a solitary cyclist I have only ever enjoyed one club run in my entire life and that was when I was still in my mid teens. Probably exactly 50 years ago give or take a week or two.

I was soon lost in another huge peloton of flailing legs on another climb. I was overheating badly and beginning to tire but there were no side roads at all. Fortunately I was finally able to turn off up an even longer and steeper hill at the next village. A quick stop to strip off and then I rode on feeling very hot and rather silly. The wind was now in my favour and I was easily climbing at 24mph up one long drag. Spits and spots of rain fell on my bare arms and legs throughout the rest of the ride to my destination but I felt no need to replace the jacket again.

I had a funny moment when two cars found me on a steep, downhill, double hairpin, S-bend. The road was so narrow just there I couldn't lean out into their path. I was looking forwards to some fun acrobatics but had to brake hard instead and use as much road as I dared.

Having bought three Buddleias at the planteskole (nursery) I had to find a way of getting them the 15 miles home again without damage. Particularly into a very strong headwind. I slid the large polythene sack of bushes into my huge pink shopping bag and lashed it all to the saddle with the yard long pieces of cord I carry everywhere.

Before long it was raining hard and I had to stop for my waterproof jacket and TA cap again. Unable to dismount, by swinging my leg over the tall bushes behind me, I attempted to swing my leg over the handlebars. My heel caught the brake lever hood and I rolled into a heap on the wet road! Putting all my weight on my arm with the poorly shoulder to save myself! It was agony for about five minutes and then I recovered my dignity and rode on as the pain slowly subsided. It finally stopped raining but I wasn't taking any chances with a repeat of the acrobatics until I was safely home!

A rather busy, 30 mile Sunday morning ride. It makes a change from riding against the flow and having to wave back at hundreds of grinning cyclists as I have done in previous years. Again, finding myself on the official route quite by accident.

Here is a list of sports cycle rides on Fyn for this year alone: Some of the rides are enkelt (single) start or time trials. That would explain why I see TT bikes (and their riders) all over the place in a country with no obvious history of TT as does the UK.


I wonder if the triking forum on3wheels has been hacked? I keep getting "Not available" and then  my antivirus warns me not to proceed. False alarm. It's back up again.

Click on any image for an enlargement.

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