1 Apr 2014

April 1st 2014

Tuesday 1st 38-41F, 3-5C, cool, breezy with heavy overcast. It was quite chilly on my walk. Comfortable in  the woods but cold in the wind. 4 miles exploring new routes in the woods.

As it is April the 1st here is a picture to test your cynicism, knowledge of wildlife and/or credulity. Not necessarily in that order. A snow white slug? Surely not?

I went out after lunch wrapped up well thanks to a cold easterly wind. Fortunately I took my warmer gloves today.

The supermarket chain crooks continue to mislabel their special offers. To visit a Danish supermarket is asking to be robbed. Doubly so if you don't check your receipt. If you can find anywhere to put your shopping down before leaving. The trike was weighed down with shopping again and I was fighting the wind coming back. Stuck it in a lower gear and pedalled fast.

I frightened a woman walking the central white line of a 2 way cycle path with her two dogs spread out at 45 to either side of her on extended leads. I was climbing a steep hill and didn't want to lose momentum. However, her stupid dog was as as brainless as its owner and turned into my path just as I hoped to slip past on the grass at about 7mph.

No dogs were hurt but she was obviously shocked at my sudden appearance in her completely cyclist free world. I could hear her mouthing it off as I receded upwards into the distance. I suppose I could have stopped to point out that she was using 1.5 times the width of an official and fairly busy, double cycle path but what would have been the point? Either of her dogs must have enjoyed a higher IQ than an owner with so little regard for others and her own safety. 

There was industrial strength pig's diarrhoea and urine literally running down the middle of the muddy roads. The shit sprayers must have been decanting extra shit from a bulk storage tank and decided to let it run over. I was sprayed with toxins not once but twice today. While the wind was bending the trees! I'd avoid oil seed rape if I was you. The farmer's latest toxic gold is put in everything these days. Only 13 miles.

Wednesday 2nd 41-50F, 5-10C, windy, bright overcast. It was marginally too cold on my hands to have gone without gloves thanks to the wind chill factor. Only a few brief glimpses of the sun through the thick clouds as I walked nearly three miles in an hour.

I went for my ride after lunch. The sunshine did not last long but I soon warmed up chasing a cyclist who passed me at over 20mph into a headwind. I could only manage 16mph and he soon disappeared down the road. A hilly and meandering detour added a few more miles on the way home. There is a mass of blossom out now. With the threat of new leaves exploding onto the scene very soon. 19 miles.

Thursday 3rd 36F, 2C, overnight frost, breezy, brightening sky through thin, high cloud. There was variable cloud and a cool wind for my 4 mile walk covered in and hour and half.  It has brightened up nicely now. I'm seeing a lot of Goldfinches and hearing lots of woodpeckers. That's two days in a row I've seen a pair of deer near the woods. The oil seed rape is about to flower over vast areas.

I did my regular ride to a shop 17 miles away and came back another way. Rather tired from the start and I should have worn my best bibs instead of my thinnest padded shorts. A cross headwind going and an even crosser headwind coming back. I saw a strongly marked bird of prey but have no idea what it was yet. Same clear colours as a Red kite, almost Buzzard-sized with shorter, very broad but pointed wings. 38 miles.

Friday 4th 37F, 3C, windy, bright sunshine. Becoming very windy later with gusts up to nearly 40mph.  It is possible that Denmark will receive some of the Saharan dust at some time over the weekend. The wind picked up steadily, to a gale, throughout my 5 mile walk. My usual complete solitude was broken by a huge lorry being loaded with logs in the woods. It is amazing how people develop special skills. I stopped to watch the driver placing logs (with the crane) with remarkable speed and delicacy. Later there were tractors busy tilling and another resowing damp patches from the long term puddles caused by the winter rain. The number of gulls on the fields matched the sheer size of the machinery.

My hands were still cold from the wind and my nose had turned bright red/blue after two hours of walking. The sky has now become milky with high cloud. Having a rest day from the trike due to the gales. I need any available excuse to force myself to take a break.

In a principle case in the Danish courts a couple has been awarded a huge sum in compensation for the low frequency noise they suffered when a small wind farm was built near their rural home. I wonder when the first principle case will be heard, into the suffering caused to millions, by the stench of weapons grade, pig shit spreading for (taxpayer subsidised) profit? Let's not forget the torture of millions of highly intelligent animals for (taxpayer subsidised) profit. Nor the continuing (taxpayer subsidised) abuse of antibiotics, on an industrial scale, which is threatening the present and future health of the human race. Enjoy your (taxpayer subsidised) bacon!

Saturday 5th 41F, 5C, very heavy overcast, light wind and rain. No walk today and I left my ride until after lunch to avoid the rain. It promptly started drizzling as I rode away! It finally stopped while I was shopping and stayed dry all the way home. I set my rear lights flashing and wore the bright greeny/yellow Aldi rain jacket to ensure I was visible in the mist and rain. Only 15 miles.

I bought a £4 Velolex bike computer with claimed cadence in Netto. Despite its high price the Cateye Cadence is very unreliable. The contacts in the shoe/docking station are its main Achilles heel. I often glance down to see it showing a blank screen or half the speed I am travelling at! The digits are so small (and tall and thin) that it is almost impossible to read accurately much of the time without a magnifying glass. By the time I have sorted the tiny 0s from the 8s I could easily have run off the road! What were they thinking?

Sunday 6th 46-51F, 8-11C, thick mist, light breeze, overcast.

The claim that the cheapo Velolex bike computer does cadence (i.e. crank rpm) was pure bullshit. It simply offers to count the number of turns of the wheels as an extra feature of the claimed 14 functions. The extra "lumpiness" in the pack was not a crank sensor and magnet. Needless to say: It is going back.

The mist had cleared quite a bit as I set off perched on the Vetta SL saddle. I had treated the B17 'Special' to Brooks own proofing yesterday because it showed the rain too easily. It was still rather greasy this morning.

It was an interesting experience riding another saddle for a change. It felt quite small but managed to support my sit bones well enough. I think what the B17 brings to the table is much greater area and the hammock suspension. It does so at the cost of efficiency. Almost every other saddle which I have tried feels instantly "faster" than the B17. These saddles make you want to ride faster and you do. Including climbing more quickly and efficiently. This is despite my B17 'Special' being tied. Which made it much stiffer and quite a lot more uncomfortable. Though not unbearably so. It started drizzling again on the last leg home. 24 miles.

Click on any image for an enlargement. 

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