26 Oct 2015

26th October 2015 Whistling while you trike?

Monday 26th 36-52F, 2-11C, clear and sunny after a first, cold night this autumn. Only persistent vapour trails mark the pale blue skies. Winds light until this afternoon. I had better make the most of it provided I can match my clothing to the climbing temperatures.

A very typical view in rural Fyn, Denmark. A low, rolling landscape with small groups of windmills [turbines] and a mix of cultivated fields, hedges, aging avenues of trees and dense copses. The windmills are usually arranged in groups of three and have a pale grey, paint finish which changes constantly with the light. They can change from snow white to jet black in only a few moments with passing cloud. The normal arrangement is that they must be sited 200 meters from any dwelling. This is to avoid noise issues and throwing cyclic shadows from the blades.  

My Panasonic TZ7 camera sensor has picked up some dirt from the suction effect of zooming. I have dismantled and cleaned the camera sensor and IR filter before thanks to some excellent YT videos. Fortunately the fluff usually only shows up in images containing the sky. PhotoFiltre [free image handling software] has a "clone" feature which allows one to "stamp" over the dirt with a similar section of image "borrowed" from nearby. I have used the clone feature to hide dustbins, cars and even people from view before now.

An hour and a half walk through the soggy and very muddy woods in bright sunshine. Hundreds of gulls had spilled over onto the fields on either side of the track. While the majority remained encamped on their usual field in the distance. The frontier birds  lifted off and flapped raggedly into the headwind and back to their massed comrades. Two buzzards left a solitary ash tree complaining at my disturbance.

"The General" in full dress uniform with a chest full of medals.

I have deafening tinnitus in my left ear after another week of deafness. I was going to have a longer ride today but can't do much now. The occasional, cooking oil drops to melt hardened ear wax, don't seem to be doing any good. I stuffed my ear with a ball of cotton wool and put on my GripGrab scull cap to keep my ear free of the cool wind. Then rode to Assens into blinding sunlight. Not that one should ever complain about sunshine. Well, not unless you find yourself naked in the desert without a tube of SPF50 stuck in your cleavage.

I ran across an asphalt laying gang busy on a minor road. Two cars overtook me as we approached only to find themselves blocked as lorry load of the black stuff was loaded via bucket into the chain smoking, tar laying machine. We all sat there for five minutes while they all fastidiously ignored us. They were doing a great job though, with flawless surfaces superbly smoothed between strips. Their lifespan must be severely curtailed by inhaling that foul smoke all day and every day.

A cross tailwind going with a crosser headwind coming home almost at dusk. The car rear lights were just taking on that slightly brighter look to make me wonder whether I should be required to light up. It's a £70 fine for failing to have legal lighting after lighting up time. The latest requirement is 300 meters visibility, preferably a flashing beam with a 5 hour reserve of battery power. Though how they measure the latter is a mystery. My batteries seem to last for several years. I ride so rarely in the dark that my brilliant LED lights never seem to get a proper airing. Probably just as well given that the Danish News website today said that 2 out of 3 "road accidents" after dark are alcohol related. Not a statistic to be proud of!! It's now well past 6pm and the tinnitus hasn't changed since it started at 11am. Nothing I try seems to make the slightest difference. 20 miles.

Click on any image for an enlargement.

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