19 May 2014

19th May 2014

Monday 19th. Forecast to be wet for most of the day. Though it wasn't really.  Another rest day.

I forgot to mention that I solved the Higgins' creaking headset problem with lots of oil after inverting the trike. Those who have been paying attention will know that I lack a proper lower bearing seating on the original Higgins' forks. I had smeared the steerer tube with Liquid Metal. Then smoothed it off to a tight fit on the lower race. It made a terrible racket when ridden until I oiled it!

The bearings themselves were well greased prior to assembly so the race must have been creaking on the Liquid Metal. This was despite it being months since I carried out the repair and not being ridden since. The Liquid Metal seemed more like ordinary car body filler than something special. As purchased the Higgins had what looked like Araldite on the lower end of the fork steerer tube. The head bearings have never been free of rock when the front brake was applied and the trike moved back and forth by hand.

Tuesday 20th 55-70F, 13-21C, light breeze and sunny. The forecast is for more of the same. With a possible high of 22F or 72C with light winds.
Traffic control authorities admit that they have abandoned any attempt to control the speed of users of the bridge overt the Øresund Straits between Sweden and  Denmark. Those with season tickets do not need to stop at the toll payment booths. So they often drive through at high speed. Endangering the staff and others in the area. So now they have installed an "intelligent" automatic speed bump. More intelligent (allegedly) than those driving over it. The plate which drops, rather than rises, when a vehicle travelling at excessive speed is detected. The effect is to give a physical shock to drivers who deliberately exceed the speed limit.

No doubt we can look forwards to the first Audi owner suing the authorities for damage to his car when he crossed the fall trap at 200mph! Audi owners, in Denmark, consider ownership as an open license to unrestricted speed. It's probably an effect of driving in a sensory deprivation tank. Perhaps somebody should look into this factor in aggressive driving behaviour?

Danish traffic authorities have given up any attempt to control drivers' speeds. It was recently estimated that 2 million drivers exceeded the speed limit per year on one particular road with a low speed limit. Drivers are often travelling at three times the legal speed limit! The Danish papers are full of stories of drivers passing roadworks, with very low signed speed limits for worker, cyclist and pedestrian safety. With drivers often travelling at completely illegal motorway speeds!

Traffic cameras are considered an infringement of privacy in Denmark. Drivers have to be warned in advance (with adverts in the local paper) that there is a police radar unit working in their area. While Danish children killed in traffic by speeding drivers, are valued at only a couple of hundred pounds equivalent in fines. Far more than a cyclist can be fined for a couple of simultaneous but minor infringements. Welcome to the Bag Lady's Twilight Zone!

My cynical mood has improved with a walk through the woods in warm sunshine. With lots of loitering while trying to spot the source of the countless bird calls. The majority were probably warblers including a Nightingale, Garden warblers and Chiffchaffs. I saw a fox and a young deer and lots of hares. Including a rather damp leveret which came right up to my feet! Then a Crested tit arrived and foraged on a conifer right beside the track. The hare took off like a rocket and ran 200 yards along the track until it was out of sight.

The still unidentified, orange breasted (thrush like) birds by the field pond had gone to be replaced by Plovers. The number of Shelducks had grown to six. A hare was sitting amongst them for company in the short, grass-like, immature crop. Only 4.2 miles in 2 1/4 hours.

Went shopping on the Higgins after lunch. Warm and sunny with light winds. Only 15 miles.

Wednesday 21st 67-71F, 19-22C, quite breezy from the east, bright overcast. No walk.
Warm and sticky on the Higgins with a headwind. I had no real energy today. Only 10 miles.

Thursday 22nd 67-76F, 20-25C, windy and sunny. 5 mile walk.
It feels like an oven out there now!  Only 7 miles.

Friday 23rd 57F, 4C, heavy overcast, rain, thunder and lightning. Big thunder storm in the night with golf ball sized hail falling not far away. Flooding in S. Jylland. Doesn't look very promising right now. With the sky darkening menacingly. A mixed morning but mostly dry after the early rain. A short ride after lunch. Only 10 miles. It has just started raining again so I was lucky to get home still dry. The wind was surprisingly strong for a day when the wind turbines were standing still.

Saturday 24th 64F, 18C, warm, humid, mostly sunny and relatively still. A 2 mile stroll to start the day. An after coffee ride of 15 miles. There seemed to be headwind whichever direction I travelled.

Sunday 25th 58F, 15C, cloud clearing, still. The forecast is quite promising. Should be quite sunny with more comfortable temperatures (20C/68F) than recently. Another day with headwinds in all directions. Only 7 miles.

Click on any image for an enlargement. 


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