30 Jan 2017

30th January 2017 It's heavy.

Monday 30th 36F, 2C, heavy overcast, misty with a light breeze, all day rain promised. Just the lightest of drizzle as I plodded along to the village. A very damp bird of prey clung limply to a tree looking rather depressed. I took to the verges for each passing juggernaut. Not only to give them more room against oncoming traffic but to avoid their tyre spray. Thin mist softened the landscape. Busy in the workshop all day.

Tuesday 31st 36F, 2C, very heavy overcast, north-easterly breeze. It is still almost dark at 7.50am. At least the forecast is dry today. It stayed dry. I walked up through the woods and back along the marsh. I disturbed three merganser but one stayed put as I watched it through my binoculars. Too far away across the lake to photograph. Late morning ride to catch up on the shopping. Returning heavily laden. Only 7 miles.


26 Jan 2017

26th January 2017 Starry, starry night...


Thursday 26th 30F, -1C, heavy overcast, thick mist, breezy enough to move the trees. Windchill is at -5C. It felt cold yesterday at similar temperatures in a light breeze. I expect it to be worse today unless we get the promised sunshine later. It wasn't too bad for a walk to the village and back. A small flock of Bullfinches brightened the view of the drab, winter trees. The mist cleared but there was no sunshine.

Friday 27th 30-35F, -1+2C. Quite breezy from the east. A clear, starry night for a change. The dustbin lorry was a movable feast, of light, seen from across the fields. The first hint of a glow in the sky from the east at 07.30. By 8.30 the sky was still clear but now bright. A hard white frost reveals itself as a huge heron takes awkward flight towards the pinkly, shaded, northern horizon. The anemometer rotors are spinning as a warning against wind chill on my anticipated walk. Ask not what today will bring. But what can you bring to today.

The soil was rock hard and the whitened grass crunchy as I walked up to the woods. A buzzard flapped away in company with a raucous jackdaw. Which took a pointless swipe at its larger cousin. The beech leaves were noisy under my boots as I sought my exit from the forest into blinding sunshine. Thanks to the shelter of the hedge from the easterly wind I soon had my jacket open and my fleece hat in my pocket. I could also remove my wind visor in the form of yellow, industrial safety glasses. As I have said before these absolutely trounce conventional [cycling] sunglasses for wind protection. They are my go-to choice for perfectly dry eye cycling in wintry temperatures.

Late morning ride wearing my fleece, neck warmer sleeve. It provides a superb, extra dollop of warmth when needed, but can be lost in the bag in an instant. Highly recommended for sub zero rides. Mostly a crosswind in brilliant sunshine returning heavily laden. The scooterist's gloves were perfect today without a twinge of cold.  Three red kites were circling over a roadside marsh. With several buzzards or similar sized birds of prey seen on the way home. I caught up with cyclists going both ways on the raised cycle paths. So I had to dive down short, 45° ramps off the kerb and back up again after overtaking along the road at nearly 20mph. The ramps are only as wide as they need to be for private drives so are best taken at speed. Silly old sod! 😎17 miles.

Saturday 28th 30F, -1C, another clear night. Some early sun promised. As it finally approaches daylight at 8.15 the sky is strewn with thin, pinkish-orange clouds against the palest turquoise. The bright vapour trails from the airliners add their linear embellishments.  [According to personal taste.]

Have you ever wondered what happens to all the Internet content over time? They say that once committed to the 'Net' that it will echo forever. I have this strange idea that iArchaeology students will look back with some virtual longing for our Golden Age of pre-dystopian innocence. I may be a deluded old fart but it really does feel as if the future will be a far bleaker place. Certainly much worse than anything we have enjoyed over the last half century or more.

Melancholic nostalgia has no firm basis in reality and may simply be a standard feature of [older] age. One's youth provides more fertile grounds for optimism than the apparent bleakness ahead. I find myself looking far more often in the rear view mirror than through the dirty and distorted windscreen on the future. Those supposedly in charge or OUR world seem no less corrupt than at any time in human history. I had hoped the Internet would sweep away much the the dross by exposure to the cleansing light of public gaze. But the US electorate has managed to Trump any evil or blind, superstitious ignorance which has gone before. Will the last man [or woman] on Earth please turn out the lights? Thank you.

I walked to the woods and looped around various tracks. Apart from a couple of jays all was quiet today. It was quite hard walking in some places with the frozen soil being rock hard and unforgiving.

Sunday 29th 35-38F, 2-3C, misty and breezy with a heavy overcast. The promised black ice did not materialize. Walked anticlockwise up through the forest and back along the track. The jay's witches cackles echoed trough the trees. A fair number of herons about at the moment. Probably foraging because their regular ponds are frozen. The ground was still rock hard this morning despite the apparent wetness of everything. At least it gives me better access to certain routes. It rained at lunchtime adding to the misery of yet another permafrost thaw causing squelchy conditions.


25 Jan 2017

25th January 2017 Loose drawers.

Wednesday 25th 32F, 0C, heavy overcast. The woods are wreathed in thick, patchy mist which belies the clarity nearer to.

Walked to the more distant woods along the field-side track and marshes. Vast silage clamps, reminiscent of prehistoric, long barrows had been laid open by an excavator for loading into vast lorries. The traffic was non-existent in the lanes and very light on the main road. Lots of rooks and a few birds of prey.

I shall have to go trike shopping today to catch up on two days doing something else entirely. I could actually wheel the Trykit to midway in the shed! This is a first and took many hours of reorganization of the shelving and rearranging bench tools.

I have several loose wood and plywood drawers which each house my collections of screwdrivers, pliers and spanners. Plus others for my numerous planes, hand saws, drills and other tools.

My ongoing search for tough, shallow, storage containers remains unfulfilled.  Plastic tubs are always far too deep for proper stool storage where rapid selection is not only desirable but vital. Nor does one want them piled on top of each other. Most of those tubs on display in DIY outlets and supermarkets seem to be getting ever thinner and more fragile.  More useful for a collection of ties or socks than heavy metal. Wall mounting all my tools would need a barn.

I don't have room for a serious drawer-style tool cabinet. The rather shallow drawers are often hopeless for tool storage anyway unless they become seriously large and expensive. Not to mention incredibly heavy! Smooth and level, concrete floors are obligatory. I should really make strong plywood 'drawers' with proper sliders but can never decide what size to make them. So the original drawers continue in use for yet another year decade.

Having far too many different hobbies require far too many unique tools and I have had a very long time to build my collections. Many of the unusual, quality tools were bought at flea markets. A collection of metal planes will rarely be used these days but are nice tools to have when you badly need them. As are old-fashioned wire stripping pliers with a chain across the handles and brass adjustment screw. Nothing even comes close for stripping very fine wires to absolute perfection in a confined space.

Small [fine] ratchet handles and extension bars for sockets and hex socket heads are wonderful accessories when working on the trike. How I wish I had them when I was starting out.

Hex socket head screws are also a vast improvement on chromed and rounded-off, hex head so typical of the 1960s. Or the hideously fragile cross heads which came later. Pro riders would probably have the screws discarded to keep the bike looking pretty. But it has taken 50 years to provide [almost universal] stainless steel socket heads. Yet still some ridiculously expensive cycle accessories have rapidly rusting bolts as soon as they see a drop of rain or a hint of dew.

I remember starting with a 'dumbbell' aluminium 'bicycle' spanner, a stamped out, flat, multi-sized, 'bicycle' spanner and a pair of electricians pliers borrowed from my father. Who was a keen cyclist before the war. Pliers are crap at cutting cables but I persisted for half a century before buying real pair of bicycle cable cutters. At 16 I was building my first racing bike from a bare Jack Taylor, lugless frame and a large pile of presentation boxes of the latest 10 speed gears and cotterless chainsets. I soon discovered a chain extractor was also vital to further progress and still carry one everywhere. [On the trike, I should hastily add. Not as a gold plated, Trump-Savile style, chest adornment.]

Late morning, hilly ride under cold, grey skies.  A sociopathic, white van man veered right off the road onto the cycle path to try and frighten me. I didn't have a chance to identify his van markings. Then there was the kilometers of mud and stones left behind by the council vehicles where they had been cutting away roadside trees.  Followed by a long string of illegally parked, hunter's vehicles obstructing the cycle path on the other side. All within the space of half a kilometer. 21 miles and I forgot to eat my chocolate muesli bar again.


24 Jan 2017

24th January 2017 Tripping to town.


Tuesday 24th 33F, -1C, risk of thick fog below 100 meters forecast. Though I can still see the neighbours lights at that distance. Talking of lights: I drove to the city yesterday and was nearly dumbfounded [sic] by the absence of speed signs at the usual [potential] danger points. Previously, there were 60kph [40mph] signs at two junctions on the busy main road. Now they have completely blank signs which light up with bright diodes telling the driver that there is a 60kph speed limit for so many hundred meters. How is a driver supposed to know this unless one is exceeding 60kph?  The national speed limit is 80kph. [50mph] So naturally most drivers will be driving at 80kph or more.

Now imagine the traffic driving along at a typical [Danish] 90-100kph suddenly confronted by numerous, blazingly bright, red and white LED sign? No previous fixed warning signs.The driver panics and stamps on the brakes. Have they broken the law? And by how much?

I was trailing a number of cars which had previously overtaken me. [While driving at my legal 80kph.] I was letting my speed fall slowly and checking my mirror as I searched for the familiar limit signs but there were none. Suddenly the LED lights came on!

There is a very long straight leading to one junction when I was coming back the other way. Which gave plenty of time to see the lights were constantly lit by most drivers travelling at [or above] the legal, national speed limit. What is going on here? Psychological warfare against drivers travelling at the legal speed limit? Is the element of surprise a new feature in Danish road safety?

While in Odense I passed a police radar van parked in a forecourt on a very busy, multi-lane, ring road. With multiple [usually red] traffic lights at half mile intervals it is more like a miles long, serial drag strip. It seemed as if everybody was being very good at that particular moment and all were driving at the 60kph speed limit.  But still the camera flashed! I was in the outside lane in good time for a major left turn and was sure I was within the clearly marked 60kph speed limit. Interestingly[?] the car in the nearside lane had text across the rear bragging about its engine and horsepower. Unusual, but surely not illegal? Coincidence?

Cold walk down the foggy lanes for 40 minutes then out driving for the second day in a row. I haven't worked out how to carry 100kg  or 200 lbs of fuel on the trike yet. A trailer? That's not such a daft idea if I split the load and made numerous journeys. Though the sturdy Higgins might be a safer 'tractor.' I'd opt for a heat pump instead of our wood stove if electricity wasn't taxed to death.


23 Jan 2017

23rd January 2017 A retrospective.


Monday 23rd 33F, +1C, still and very, very dark. Well, it is only 7.30 here at wintry 55N. A usual I have read the Danish weather forecast and the Danish and British news websites. This is a routine I follow every morning as I eat my bowl of home mixed, organic muesli with a cup of black, instant [organic] coffee. Well, how else am I supposed to know what to believe for the day ahead?

I readily admit that I am prone to the odd chortle at some of the news. So it is difficult to take anything seriously any more. I see America has officially adopted Doublespeak. 193,000 is now officially 530,000 and must be used in all statistics henceforth on pain of ridicule on Twitter.

In Denmark, half a million [out of only 5.6 million total inhabitants] were fined for speeding last year. Many Danes are demanding their speeding fines be returned because the radar camera sites were NOT PROPERLY SIGNPOSTED. Only in Denmark.

And, again in Denmark, the tax capital of the world, Olympic medalists will no longer have to pay taxes on their medals. And, it has been backdated to Rio last year. This in a country which handed 7 billion to a foreign businessman falsely claiming tax refunds. [Allegedly, of course.]

In British news there is a warning about cancer causing toast. [That doesn't sound right however you say it.] It seems the cooking process of starchy foods produces nasty chemicals. Now my daily routine of toast and marmalade, with my morning coffee, is in <cough> grave <cough> danger. I wish they had invented the problem before I became a loser and toast [ab]user. Now my habit may be coming back to bite me! Talk about retrospective taxes on health!

At least the toast hasn't destroyed my sense of direction on the trike. [Well, not so far.] Nor is it likely to cost 40 billion quid [and change] to replace my Trident Trykit! Fortunately, for world peace, Gravely Blighted is much safer with my patrolling the roads of Denmark. That's the sort of national deterrent which allows the downtrodden British nuclear family to sleep safely in their Germano-Scottish [golf] bunkers. 😎  Very busy day.

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19 Jan 2017

19th January 2017 A martyr to marmalade.

Thursday 19th 36-40F, 2-4C, light winds falling. Heavy overcast. Brisk walk to the village. A few small birds in the hedges. Even more McLardy's litter scattered across the verges. Half a dozen bags of McChilitter this time. Plus a couple of new sugar saturated ChokerColour tubs. Saw a young chap yesterday carrying his day's fix: 10 liters of ChokerColour Full Strength. He was as close to a cube [hxwxb] as you can get without actually becoming spherical. 30 stone while still in his early 20s? What chance he sees another five years?

Meanwhile back at Chez Trifling I have plans for a ride after coffee and marmalade on toast. Probably 23 miles and all very hilly. So I should burn off most of the high fruit content marmalade. And, be suffering from tricyclist's "knock" long before I reach the last, long uphill drag on the way home. All the whilst fully laden with shopping and at least an hour after I would normally have eaten lunch. My endurance for the trials and tribulations of tricycle shopping regularly astound me. Or [probably] not. It's just that nobody else will blow my trumpet and there's nobody here to stop me from doing it myself. 😇

Late morning ride in drizzle for a few miles. Then it dried up a bit but the roads were very wet and dirty. Further light drizzle followed at intervals. Loads of McDiarrhea packaging litter everywhere I went. I detoured, as you do, so a bit tired towards the end. No choccy bar! Only 27 miles.

Friday 20th 41F, 5C, overcast, light winds. 40 minute walk along the lanes. Then  a alert morning ride. Saw a small woodpecker and a hovering female kestrel. A number of buzzard sized birds lumbered about or sat waiting for lunch to walk right up to them. The traffic was treating the reduced speed limits with complete contempt, as usual. 16 miles. Now I am safely back at home the sun has come out.

Saturday 21st 41F, 5C, misty and overcast start. Walked to the village and back. It cleared to bright sunshine at lunchtime. I put off my Saturday ride because of the thick mist. Now it is perfectly clear. Busy on a project and with no pressure to go out I wasted a perfect day for a ride.

Sunday 22nd 38F, 3C, heavy grey overcast, almost still. An hour and a half loop up through the woods. Saw birds of prey and noisy Jays. Became too warm by the time I started back so had to take my jacket off. Just the slightest skin of ice left on the village ponds. Late afternoon ride for 7 miles. It felt rather cool at first.

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16 Jan 2017

16th January 2017 Hoar we go again.


Monday 16th 20-30F, -7--1C,  still and clear with a hard white frost over thin, lying snow. A bright, gibbous moon stared down from the west at the cold, white landscape at 8.00. A hoar frost had added to the overall sugar coating. Just a short walk to the village and back. I nearly went arse-over-tit on ice hidden under the snow but managed to avoid contact with the ground. A busy day doing no triking.

Apologies for those who saw the off-topic post. Google is screwing up which blog it displays in mid crisis.

Tuesday 17th 22-32F, -5-0C, heavy cloud, very light winds, another hoar frost. Still less than an inch of snow lying with a thaw promised. Walk to the village.  Distant pair of deer hovering guiltily by a field hedge. Late morning ride to the shops.  Only 7 miles.

Wednesday 18th 35F, 2C. Cloudy with wintry showers but above freezing. Gusting to over 20mph later. A clockwise walk around the forest route. I captured a number of snowy scenes before it all disappears with the thaw. Saw several Bullfinches and a couple of birds of prey resting in trees. Late afternoon ride returning in the dusk. A cold overcast and windy morning turned into a cold, wet, dark and windy afternoon. At least most of the snow is gone. Two birds of prey on a roadside field and two more in the roadside trees. All of them probably too weak and hungry to fly away.

An eJit in a black estate car overtook me on the apex of a sharp corner. Missed me by no more than two feet! Had ages to assess my speed and read the road as it hurtled down on me from the long straight.

Later, I set a new personal best of 70kph, ~44mph on the flat. The damned speed indicator boards have a memory for a speeding car and show a ridiculous speed to the next approaching vehicle. The board usually reads under by at least 7kph at 50kph. [30mph in Old Money] So I was probably traveling much faster than the indicated 70kph. Luckily the boards have no cameras. So my secret is probably safe. I'll let you know if I am selected for the next Olympics.  Only 7 miles, innit?

Olympics? Where's me asthma meds? 
Amazon is sending them by drone, Sir.  
Legs eleven! Tootle de France, anybody? 😎 

The news is that 563,000 were caught speeding in Denmark last year. The entire population is only about 5 million including many non-drivers, the elderly and children! Meanwhile, 2016 was the latest warmest year [ever] in succession.

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14 Jan 2017

Friday the 13th! Mind that car! Use a mirror!


Friday 13th 33F, 1C, almost still, thick mist, heavy overcast. Wish me luck! I walked my familiar forest route anticlockwise in thick mist. Only one, middle-aged woman tried to run me down on the last leg along the road. I'm blaming the fog of compulsory anti-depressants which form a large part of the Danish diet. A dog barked incessantly throughout my hour and a quarter walk. Even at my most distant point I could hear it clearly. Yet the sound of the traffic was subdued. The sun started to break out just before I arrived home. Which is finally burning off the mist to clear blue skies. Another busy day at home avoiding Friday 13th drivers.

Saturday 14th 33F, 1C, thin snow lying, clear, breezy from the SW. I made it to the woods as the sun climbed from behind the clouds. A little care was needed to avoid puddles hidden by the half inch of snow as I returned via the spray tracks. The dog was silent today. Though the hunters were doing their best to disturb my meditative plod. A buzzard was moving away from their racket just as I arrived back on the road. I don't think it was personal, but it seemed more intimidated by me than the rapid gunfire from whence it came. It is promised to be rather breezy [20mph gusts] but Saturday morning shopping beckons. With an almost clear blue sky and bright sunshine defying the forecast of wintry showers.

It stayed dry but not still for my ride. My outward route curved from easterly to directly south. So I 'enjoyed' constantly changing wind directions. The same on the way back. The bike path "works" seem to be largely on hold for the winter. Though large machines are making what looks like a new drainage pond where once there were woods. These emergency overflow ponds are popping up everywhere to cope with threatened, future cloudbursts.

A large bird of prey landed on a roadside tree under which I was just about to pass. Luckily there was no traffic so I could safely skirt around the potential 'splatter zone.' A rear view mirror is essential for such moments. Cyclists have no idea what they are missing by not having a lightweight rear view mirror like the Zefal Cyclop on the offside. Mirror coated, polycarbonate is weightless and avoids all risk of smashed glass. The moulded shape is very 'racy' and ideal for its purpose. Moreover, and vitally, the flat mirror surface does not diminish the size of overtaking vehicles.

There is a smaller mirror, the Spy, in the Zefal range for serious racing bikes. You just need your head to be closer to the mirror to make best use of the smaller reflective surface. Fine if you are riding on the drops but rather small if you ride on the hoods or tops while sitting almost bolt upright. Try the larger Spin model if you tend to ride perpendicular. Or the excellent Cyclop, of course. All models are designed to fit as adjustable expansion plugs in the handlebar ends. I usually get at least two years out of a new mirror and could get much more on a bike or a trike with mudguards. The mirrors don't wear out. They just get wet sandblasted by my trike's rear wheel spray. Wipe that with a coarse, canvas, winter glove and the sealed mirror surface is bound to become slowly degraded. The trick is to ignore the splashes and leave it to clear itself automatically. It doesn't usually take long because there is always the next stretch of wet road or the puddle to rise it off. Learn to leave it well alone and it will usually take care of itself.


The sense of relaxed ease [at all times] when you can monitor every overtaking vehicle is well worth the modest expense. The clamps and joints are all lightweight and work perfectly. They are also long enough to allow a clear view behind and well out to the side. I fold the mirror up by its hinge when I stop outside a shop. Then a single action returns it to exactly the correct position without any slop, vibration or messing about. The Cyclop still works well on massive cobbles! I even miss my mirror when I am out walking along the side of the road. [Facing the oncoming traffic of course.]

Having to turn around just to see what is coming up behind is dangerous and an absolute bore. Particularly on a trike where you need a clear yard/meter wide strip of road ahead.

You even see YouTube cycling safety vloggers turning their heads with helmet-mounted cameras. What right have they to lecture on safety if they have to turn round just to monitor overtaking traffic? A complete and utter nonsense! Do car drivers and motorcyclists constantly turn round to look behind them? Try that on the motorway and see how long you survive!

Leave the mirror-less idiocy to scooter riders. That "special" race of lazy people. Who often fold their mirrors to useless positions or block them with midriff fat. Then swerve out around cyclists as they overtake them without [ever] checking behind!

Keeping the chain oiled enough to resist the road salt requires discipline I usually lack. My bike computer batteries are suffering from the cold too. I sometimes get battery warnings or blank readings after a hard overnight frost. 15 miles.

Sunday 15th 32F, 0C, rather cloudy with a light breeze. Another half inch of thin snow lying. Winds promise to be light today. I see from the BBC news website that fat tired bikes are being ridden and raced in the snowy mountains. Graphene is also being used in racing tyres to resist punctures. That should add an extra nought to the retail price! How long before all cycle tyres are fully puncture proof? Better not ask Continental! Walked around the rural block in low, blinding sunshine. Lots of birds about including a chevron of Geese.

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11 Jan 2017

11th January 2017 Storm in a teacup.


Wednesday 11th 38-40F, 3-4C, heavy overcast, gales and rain. Rain with storm force southerly gusts forecast for this morning. The trees are already rocking with local gusts expected to reach 22m/s or 50mph. Windy with lighter rain all day again tomorrow. Southerly winds offer us no real shelter but they turn westerly later. Where even the neighbour's winter-bare trees provide some protection. The wind vanes are rocking back and forth wildly between east and west and even spinning at times. It was all over just after 12.00 with almost still, dry conditions with a hint of sunshine. It was if somebody had thrown a switch. I would have gone shopping on the trike but it is almost dinner time.

The corrupt tax vampires [politic-ooze] in Copenhagen are slavering their bløødy chops over the chance to tax woodburning stoves. Or rather their owners. Wood stoves produce particles which are a minute fraction of those produced by diesel engines. But nobody is considering increased taxation on the cheaper [than petrol] diesel fuel to match the crippling damage they cause across much of the world.

Mmm! Trademarked litter! Buuurrp! ®

Nor even to tax the massive imports of Polish coal used in Danish [yes you've guessed it] coal fired power stations. Well, they need something to make the windmills go round realistically when there is no wind. The smart minds say that stopping imports of coal would cause unemployment. Plus an even greater reliance on importing coal-fired, electric power from Germany. Heads they wind. Tails they wind [us up!]

Anything which makes our woodburning neighbours desist in making toxic smoke would be a bonus. However, the alternative heating systems are usually complete non-starters. At least in comparison with the completely imaginary cheapness of burning lead painted, demolition timber and oil painted chipboard for heating.

Wood burners allow themselves nothing in wages [of sin] for the countless hours they spend in chainsawing and splitting large lumps into small. There is no known way to educate such people. They have absolutely no empathy for neighbours. Those who must remain slaves to their noisy activities until one or the other grows old and dies.

The houses next door can never be sold. Potential buyers only need to see piles of logs and knee deep wood chips before running away as fast as their legs will carry them back to their car. Some wood cutters don't even live on the grounds they so sorely befoul. Arriving only to make their racket just to "save money" on firewood. Some even sell regular trailer loads of split logs illegally without paying taxes on their ill-gotten gains. These people are well beyond all human help and only a vet can put them out of their neighbour's abject misery.

Afternoon ride with a gusty tailwind shoving me along. Shops busy and I returned heavily laden but without bread. [No stock, again!] Only 7 miles.

Thursday 12th 36F, 2C, windy with occasional sunshine between heavy clouds. The roads were saturated with lorries and buses throwing up huge plumes of spray. I had just reached the village when it started raining. With no shelter to be found I plodded on as it petered out almost as soon as it had started. 17 m/s gusts promised for lunchtime. Which is 35mph in old money with light wintry showers as a special side order for tricyclists.

I left as a large dark cloud was being shredded by high winds. I was being buffeted by a side wind but it stayed dry until I reached the shops. It hailed on the way back as the sky blackened, the gusts grew more fierce and the trees roared threateningly. Now we have bright sunshine and blue skies. Only 7 miles.

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10 Jan 2017

A-bus locks: Each year a heavier mangle than the last! ©



The Danish TV news website has a piece on cycle theft in Denmark. One in seven of  reported crimes is for cycle theft. Far fewer are ever prosecuted. A few different means of securing one's cycle are mentioned in passing. Including a "Skunk Lock" with pressurized, stinky liquid under pressure in the loop. If a thief tries to saw though it then they are likely to release the substance. With such deleterious effects that they are very likely to sue the owner of the lock. And win, in today's justice lottery for free handouts system.

30 years since "We" went to the Moon and there is still no serious AND LIGHTWEIGHT cycle lock on the market? The more valuable or lightweight the cycle the less likely the owner is to want to carry a 3lb+ A-bus U-lock. Many U-locks and chains weigh much more! But still the executives go home to their posh homes in their posh cars to their posh families with a completely clear conscience and sleep like babes in their posh beds. No doubt they all get together at a posh golf club when they aren't actively forging their salaries.

How much longer are locks going to live in the pre-WW1, cast iron washing mangle/wringer era? I carry my 2lb A-bus Mini U-lock everywhere regardless of the likelihood of anyone wanting to steal a "handicap" trike. Which is how a woman described it only this week when one of her young children asked what it was. I carry an extra 2lb chain when I ride to the city. 4lbs total is getting close to the weight of some CF cycles! The lock manufacturers should be damned well ashamed of still relying on heavy steel sections for security! They started making locks in 1924 and A-bus locks get heavier every year!

A-bus are also the criminals here for aiding and abetting cycle theft by denial of a meaningful security device! As are the national politic-ooze [tax vampires] in Copenhagen for not hiking the fine for cycle theft to a crippling level!

They used to hang horse thieves. Perhaps it is time to make similar examples of the cycle thieving scum! Let's U-lock the thieving scum by the neck to a post in the city center. To publicize the start of the "like-for-like" cycle value matching fine for each and every theft! With a minimum of £1000 to get the scum's and [finally] the police person's attention.

And, let's make the executives of lock companies all wear their heaviest U-lock permanently 24x365 around their scrawny, fossilized necks! At least until they stop making their ill-gotten gains under completely false pretenses!

Choose your A-bus washing mangle/wringer here: mangle | eBay

Or even here:

ABUS: Bike Lock Configurator - Configurator for bike security - Bike

Note the complete absence of weight data in the selection process? You have to select a lock and then search the technical data to discover it weighs 1.6kg or more! 1.6kg x 2.2 = 3.5 lbs in turn of the 20th Century A-bus money terms: 3.5lbs!?!?!?! Thank you A-bus! Purveyors of non-serious bike mangles for nearly 100 years! 

The Bordo Granite [whatever] weighs 1750 grams! Are Abus actually bragging about the weight? Why granite? 1.75kg x 2.2 = 3.9 lbs in Abus pounds. Nearly 4lbs!!!! Would you like to carry their latest <cough> high tech Bordo on your emaciated carbon fiber steed? You know, the one you paid several thousands for. With all the weight saving, top end parts just to save 50grams overall on a 6lb bike. But, you can have a 4lb A-BUS, upmarket lock for no more than £86 rotting, dead squid from ChainReaction UK.

 Abus Bordo Granit X-Plus Folding Lock | Chain Reaction Cycles

Scroll down for the weight!  £86/4 = Over £20 squid a pound. For dirt cheap, iron bar! That's Antiques Roadshow pricing!A>re they serious? No of course not! They make bike locks, after all.

I just checked one of the most popular Danish cycle accessory dealer's websites and found NO mention AT ALL of bicycle lock weights! Nor did Wiggle! Service with a smile? Or a sick/smug grin?

If you go to the glossy A-bus website you'll see a couple of clean shaven, male models posing in front of a computer screen with a specially staged 'skeleton' of some fancy lock system. Probably borrowed as Jpeg from a real lock company. Let's leave aside the similarities between skeletons and fossils for the moment. How much computing power you need to bend a 5/8" length of solid steel bar into a simple half loop? Something like 1k per century processor speed? That'll be the latest A-bus computer system to match the latest A-bus cycle locks. I'm amazed they don't claim "Oxygen free" like the rip-off Hifi cables. Though I'd better not give them any more clever ideas for fleecing the innocent cyclist!

My own, A-bus Mini U-lock hasn't worked properly from day one. The key won't ever go in without endless turning and jiggling to match the various layers of metal before final insertion. I feel like a seriously handicapped pensioner standing there completely unable to put the bløødy key into my humble bløødy, A-bus cycle lock! Thank you, Abus!

If you are daft enough to hang the A-bus Mini U-lock from the cycle frame it rattles like a tin can full of ball bearings on steroids! Mine still rattles even when inserted deep into the side pocket of my Carradice Camper, Longflap, saddle bag and strapped down tight. I'm exaggerating very slightly because even the A-bus Mini loop is too long for the pocket's depth. But hey! It's an overpriced A-bus Mini!

I once tried hanging the damned thing directly from the junction of the chainstays on my way to Odense. But had to stop within half a mile to stuff wet tissues in my ears to act as ear plugs! Not that it helped much to "damp" the racket from the A-bus lock. 

For those several years short of a pension: A "mangle" was a massively heavy, cast iron, clothes wringer used around the end of the 19th century and start of the 20th century. Since they were aimed only at [mere] working class women the weight didn't matter a damn. Nor did the effort required to turn the iron handle to drive the massive cast iron gears and huge rollers. "Mangle" was an ironic reference to the countless injuries. Where innocent fingers were drawn between the crushing rollers to burst like ripe grapes. 

We are talking serious "Arnie" weight lifts and jerks here. Often repeated for hours on end. The heavy washing would be lifted out of a bucket full of freezing cold water sitting on the bare, frozen cobbles with one bare, frostbitten hand. Then fed between the massive wooden rollers as they were simultaneously turned by a huge crank with the washerwoman's spare, third hand. Later machines had rubber coated rollers for decoration. Arnie would have approved.

A-bus would have used extra heavy, cast iron rollers had they been in the "cutting edge" market of mangles or wringers. Abus: "Our products weigh as much as a bus!"© That should make an excellent marketing theme!  Highly memorable and should go down a ton in the global TV commercials. At least they can't be accused of money laundering if they never made mangles/wringers. 

Strangely, Chain-Reaction doesn't mention the weight of Kryptonite locks. That's probably because they are made of priceless Unobtainium. Mined from distant asteroids, to make sure they are far too heavy for any wimpy, drug addled, bandy-legged, snot-nosed, shit-faced, micro-penised, scrag-ended, cycle thief to actually carry them away. So they can work with a little more privacy than in the shopping high street. Not that anybody would notice if they used a deafening angle grinder and showered passing shoppers with burning sparks! That would be too much to hope for!



10th January 2017 The McLardy's Road Kill Diet.®


Tuesday 10th 36F, 2C, overcast and still pitch black at 8 am. Showers and wind forecast. Another storm tomorrow. Nice.

A wet walk up to the woods in modest, driving rain. I even did a loop via the fire break tracks under dripping trees. Then walked back into a headwind and more driven rain. My clothes stayed dry under the Helly Hansen jacket but my fleece trousers were a bit soggy. Not very exciting reading, is it?

I have a great new diet idea: You still get to queue and enjoy your only active social life with the takeaway counter slave. But, instead of consuming the crap, you throw the full packaging straight onto the verge in a place of your own choosing.

You should lose weight quite rapidly without all that sugar and saturated crap between meals. Though the Brazilian Jungle will not thank you. Nor, probably, will the local wildlife. I'm calling it the McLardy's Choice Litter Diet® for obvious reasons. Suit yourselves. You will anyway. My second choice of title was McLardy's Road Kill Diet®  But, that sounded far too appetizing and might even lead to greater sales. And we wouldn't want that. Would we?

The Danish TV news website has a piece on cycle theft in Denmark. One in seven reported crimes is for cycle theft. Far fewer are ever prosecuted.

30 years since we went to the Moon and there is still no serious AND LIGHTWEIGHT cycle lock on the market? The more valuable or lightweight the cycle the less likely the owner is to want to carry a 2lb+ Abus U-lock. Many U-locks and chains weigh twice that! See next post for a far more thorough rant:


9 Jan 2017

9th January 2017 And don't call me Misty!

Monday 9th 37F, 3C, misty and breezy with a very heavy overcast and light rain showers. Yeuk!

I wonder whether the UK has similar or equally wonderful library system to Denmark's. One simply waves one's credit card sized, national identity card at the little box outside the door. Most Danish villages with over 2500 inhabitants have a library.

From above.

The door opens automatically and one then has unhindered access to the entire library whether there are staff present or not. The same card then allows all the expected features via the numerous computer terminals via a 4 digit pin code. Renewal of book, DVDs and CDs, loans, returns, loan status, reservations and their status matched with simple reference number on the open shelf for collection. Plus the expected local and national, catalogue searches etc. and in which library the desired film, music or book is in stock. Even how much time before a reservation is likely to result in the book, music CD or DVD film arriving at the local library with email or SMS notification. There is, of course, free internet access via numerous PCs and free WiFi. The latter even extends to the village center with information signs on lamp posts.

Whoops! Silly me! The British are too paranoid to allow identity cards despite literally everyone carrying a driving license and umpteen different bank or membership cards. Probably including a library card. Most will have a passport to allow them to holiday freely outside Gravely Blighted.

Could you trust the British to respect the library and its contents when no staff are present? After dark and in the late evenings? On Sundays when there is "nobody about?" Or would the prospect of stealing a load of film DVDs and music be too much to bear? Would the presence of security cameras, the record of their identity card and an alarm system on the door, for non-registered items, limit their options? Even including groups of younger children? Without the ID card holder being bullied into allowing others inside without registering? The reason I ask is the level of maturity, honesty and self discipline between the two countries. Particularly amongst children.

Anything not "fixed down" in the UK is considered "fair game." It was normal for everyone from the part-time cleaner to the managing director to steal regularly from the company [or national .Gov service] when I still worked in the UK. There are countless cameras monitoring the entire country now. I wonder why?

And from below.

Meanwhile, in Denmark, garages are left wide open all day and night with tools and materials clearly visible from the road. It is commonplace for building materials, including timber and packaged insulation, or even a house full of "gift wrapped" new windows and doors, to sit right beside the road. Often for months on end until they are needed in the build. Industrial estates are not normally wired like a POW camp. The only protection is usually a lawn. Yet there are few cameras monitoring public spaces in Denmark.

I took a steady stroll along the local lanes looking for prepossessing views in the mist.  You must judge for yourselves whether I succeeded. You'll have to forgive the lack of Beijing-tobacco filter for that bit of <cough> extra "atmosphere" <cough>. WYSIWYG, I'm afraid. The wind is rising as slowly as the mist thins. 25mph gusts expected later. A busy day not riding a trike.

"Weekend warriors" have had  a beneficial makeover in medical research. Deliberate weekend exercise can prolong your life by a third. While standing still and fidgeting does not. This reminds me of a sign I saw in a hilarious YouTube video. "Lying in bed and moaning 'oh god' on a Sunday morning does not constitute going to church!" Just as watching exercise happen may get your pulse racing but has few other benefits. So stop reading my blog and get on with it! You can't even count my rest days as your own.
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8 Jan 2017

7th January 2017 More bløødy misery and mayhem!


Saturday 7th 32F, 0C, misty, windy and very heavy overcast with a thin layer of snow. Southerly windows iced over from overnight refreezing of rain or sleet? Minor snow showers forecast for this morning with the wind [12m/s or 25mph gusts] dropping after lunch.  Just a walk to the village and back in horribly damp, cold and miserable semi-darkness. The main road had been salt sprayed but the edges, where I had to walk,  were still iced over. A flock of some 30 or more Goldfinches was moving about nervously in the hedgerows. Two large birds of prey went over flying very closely together, but were soon lost in the thin mist. I was hoping for a ride this morning but it has started raining. And kept doing so.

I never tire of the subtle play of light and shadow on the complex contours of the fields in winter under a low sun.

The Tricycle Association finally has a Facebook page:
Hopefully it will lead to more people discovering the joys of tricycling: 

Tricycle Association GB Group

Sunday 8th 34F, +1C, heavy overcast, calm and dry.The forecast is a couple of days of cloudy weather, with temperatures hovering around freezing point with light winds. Only walked for half an hour today and not much to report.

I was just watching a BBC video of a fat tired, electric bike claiming to be a go-anywhere machine. Yeah, like mixing with pedestrians on pavements and beaches? Will the machines have self-driving software to avoid "peds," beach ball hurlers, running children, baseball players and sunbathers? With the beaches already crowded with selfie-taking drones it may need a new form of noise cancelling software [for humans] to avoid deafness from the constant whine of electric motors!

If I see another drone with naked rotor blades intended for free flight in the pubic space I'm calling it drone porn or simply technological terrorism. "Slasher" movies have nothing on the bloody mayhem likely from a drone hitting a crowd of real people on a real beach.

Electric bikes need a human rider and we already know the appalling standard of intelligence housed in the MkI addled-noddle.

The camera drones seem to be aimed at immature narcissists and Peeping Toms. What right do these wasters have to invade our public spaces? You couldn't go near a British beach even 20 years ago without some fuckwit racing noisily up and down on some loud, motorized piece of plastic pollution. God know what it's like these days! They're probably running up and down the beach on snow scooters. Trying to keep up with the similar idiots on the water scooters. Take away the engines and make them pedal along and they wouldn't even bother to leave home.

Fortunately the Danes haven't invented the public beach concept yet. They prefer marinas. Which is just another form of middle class, plastic pollution but a little quieter. As long as you don't mind the constant clanking of rigging cables on hollow masts and empty bottles rolling back and forth on the poop deck. These white, plastic, bobbing, private bars are where people sit and get drunk. Like they do in their summer houses and allotment sheds. Before they drive home.

Rode away at 12am for a trip to the shops. Climbing quite well if a bit breathless. I managed to keep it above 85rpm on the long drag up to the forest. Disturbed a very dark, medium sized bird of prey right by the road. It flapped off towards the safety of the trees with a high cadence to match my own. Glanced left and saw six more sitting in a long row on a field. [Birds not tricyclists.] Shops busy but queues well timed to avoid my usual tantrums. I do enjoy throwing myself on the floor and screaming as I bang my feet up and own. My role model is Donald Trump. Chatted with several people today. Which is several more than usual in an average month of Sundays. Only 10 miles in still air returning well laden.

Click on any image for an enlargement.

6 Jan 2017

Friday 6th January 2017: Yeah, it's like, them three wheeled bikes, innit, eh?


Friday 6th 15-26F, -9--3C, crystal clear with an occasional breeze. Cloud expected  by late morning.

The BBC News website has a piece on drift triking down the Cheddar Gorge. Since the journo had obviously never heard of tricycles they naturally <cough> descended to the "three wheeled bike" term. Dugh? Bi means dual or two of something. Normally referring to a creature which walks on two legs. There are connotations of tri in everyday life which might make some sensitive people blush. So cover your eyes now. Tripedal BBC journalists, anybody? Suit yourselves.

Cheddar Gorge drift triking road crash worry - BBC News

What I [badly?] want to see is a new sport of drift [bi]trikers pedalling UP the Cheddar Gorge against the clock! None of that wimpy dragging it back up by the scruff of its neck nonsense! Now THAT sport might be slightly more interesting than proving your complete lack of skill on an illegal, toy <cough> bike with three plastic wheels. The pedals are clearly not directly geared to the front wheel to allow "backpedal" braking. So these "drift" tri-bikes are NOT even road legal. Trikes [and bikes] must have, by law, two independently operated brakes. Riding with one's hands off the handlebars is also considered worthy of a hefty fine in "cycling friendly" Denmark. BTW: I can drift a whole foot sideways on one local, mini roundabout, even in the dry, but who's bragging? 😎

Walked my familiar forest route in superbly clear conditions with a low, blinding sun. The equally low, northern sky was dominated by a long, narrow roll of cloud from east to west throughout. I wore a double fleece hat pulled own over my ears and my best winter, cycling gloves. Thanks to the lack of wind I was very comfortable despite the hard frost. The temperature has only just reached 20F, -7C at nearly 11am. I shall be going out on the trike after coffee.

Mmm. McLitter. Hatin' it! Buuuuuuurrrp! Pardon me!

Spent ages in the DIY store, then the library, a charity shop and two supermarkets. Bright and very clear. Saw several birds of prey, flying geese, Bullfinches and Yellowhammers.  A water filled sand quarry was bristling with birds.

I wore my thinnest gloves inside my thickest for the first half. Took off the fleece "polo neck" at half way too. It is superb for keeping my neck warm in the bitter cold until I finally get too hot. Tailwind going but still made my face/sinuses ache at first. Then again on the way back straight into the wind and the sun. Despite wearing extra layers I could feel the cold headwind pressing on my chest at times. My nose was sore from the constant dripping and mopping with a rough glove.

The roads were dry but covered in salt. Every time a lorry went past it disappeared into its own white cloud. Somebody had fallen off the road into a hedge. Broken windows and people standing about on their phones but no obvious victims. Blind bends leading to the spot with cars racing well beyond their braking distance. The same everywhere I went today. Even when they had a blinding sun in their windscreen they couldn't stay within the speed limit. Nor stay on their own side of the double white lines. I was gone for three hours but only covered 22 miles. The temperature has soared to a balmy 26F, -3C now, at 16.00pm.

Brambles guarding my exit from the beech woods to the main track.

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5 Jan 2017

5th January 2017 No exit!

Thursday 5th 27F, -3C, a cold bright day with snow showers. Wind falling slowly from 12m/s or 25mph Northeasterly gusts. I walked around the rural block in frequent snow showers. It was interesting to watch the forest on the hill fogged out by falling snow a minute or more before it reached me. Not quite a blizzard but quite exciting to be out in it. My yellow, wraparound workshop safety glasses made the horizontally driven snow flakes quite tolerable.

A wall of snow cloud coming quickly over the northern horizon.

I added a light, fleece jacket under the Helly Hansen today and enjoyed perfect comfort in the cold wind. Not nearly so successful with my choice of gloves. The cheapo fleece gloves from the supermarket had proved too open to cold winds. So I swapped to a pair of GripGrab and my hands soon started literally aching with cold. Their only advantage over the cheapo fleece was being able to handle the camera without removing the gloves. Only as I neared home, after an hour of fairly brisk walking, did my hands begin to feel more comfortable. On the trike I never wear the GripGrabs below 50F. Today it was 25F, -4C with 15-20 mph wind gusts. So about the same as a cycle ride. I shan't make that mistake again! Putting my gloved hands in the Helly Hansen pockets provided so little extra warmth that I quickly gave up that idea.

I keep expecting to see videos or pictures of the "once in a century" coastal flooding but hardly anything online so far.

The Head Gardener refuses to let me out of the Tradesman's Entrance on my trike. Citing cold, wind and snow showers as unsuitable conditions for tri-cycling. The temperature has been falling very slowly all day and has now reached 24F, -4.5C at 14.30pm. I have previously ridden at -15C, 5F. And that was before I had proper cycling clothing! So think on!


4 Jan 2017

3rd January 2017 Another storm with serious flooding possible.


Tuesday 3rd 36-42F, 2-6C, heavy overcast with light winds so far. Half an inch of snow lying in the garden but little elsewhere. Should we be paranoid? Saw about 100 small birds, mostly Goldfinches, flying between alder trees on the marsh. Spitting with rain and forecast wet and very windy for the rest of the day. Doesn't look promising for a ride at all. It wasn't and I spent most of the day in the shed.

A knitted field? Are we living in The Matrix?

Wednesday 4th 38F, 3C, clear skies, northwesterly to northerly winds with the temperature and winds falling steadily all day. The gusts picked up to 45mph overnight as another storm passed over. I could hear it moaning steadily at the westerly windows at bed time. The wind is supposed to fall from 35mph gusts this morning.

Denmark now faces the threat of serious coastal flooding. With sea levels up to 6' above normal being forecast. This is a "once in a century" situation thanks to the sea piling up due to an unfortunate wind change. With nowhere for the water to escape through the narrow straits [Bælts] around the Danish landmasses. Most of Fyn's coast has a red warning [very dangerous] except for the north coast where the wind will still be gusting to storm force. Wintry showers are also possible today.

Dull view of the scruffy, winter woods. 

I had a long walk up to the woods today. Even including a loop along the once familiar tracks. The winter had knocked down some of the weeds which almost block progress. My journey started with blinding sunshine as I walked along the road to my exit. A cold wind required I fasten my jacket for the climb. The track was particularly wet and muddy today so that I was watching my footfalls rather intently. Too late, I became aware of two huge White tailed eagles lifting off the field to my right. They flew together directly away from me over the corner of the forest and out of sight over the hill with slow wing beats. I watched them all the while they remained in sight through my binoculars. Sadly there was no chance to capture them with my camera.

The wind seemed to increase through my hour and half outing. I did not hear the frightening 'barking' from the deer today, as I did on my last visit. My hundred yard shadow almost denied me any images of the cliff face of the woods. As the brilliant sunshine lit up the scarf of bleached corn which encircled its base. With highly variable cloud the light was constantly changing as the sun slowly crawled into the low sky.

Where's my scarf?

In Danish [Twilight Zone] news: 20 sympathetic local shopkeepers chipped in to pay the 3500DKK [~£350] fine when a camera shop owner published security camera pictures of a shoplifter on Facebook. The police told the shopkeeper that they were too busy to attend to shoplifting. Dugh? The shopkeeper has imagined the publication [and subsequent publicity] would force the shoplifters into taking up another career. Many Danish supermarkets and shops have displays of goods for sale on racks and pallets outside their premises. How do the human rights lawyers and absent police protect these goods from blatant theft?

On the same theme: The Odense council cannot put up security cameras in the local ghettos without the local gangs destroying or removing them. We must now all pray fervently to Odin that nobody films the culprits actually wrecking the cameras. Or a huge fine is likely for the perpetrator of this heinous crime! [i.e.Taking pictures of criminal activity in a public space.]

Can you imagine YouTube without videos of criminals and criminal behaviour from around the globe? Not from crime-free Denmark, tak skal du have! No dash cams here! No cycling rights activist vloggers! No private security cameras pointing outside the house! Not even through a window by accident!

So, what IS the answer? A citizen's arrest and then drive the [alleged] miscreant to the nearest city police station in a private car? Then wait until a busy police-person becomes available? That sounds like a recipe for disaster. Claims of excessive use of force to make a citizen's arrest against someone [very] unwilling to comply? Claims of unlawful detention?

Looking the other way. 
As in: It's behind you!

Say the perp is carrying a weapon and uses it on the shopkeeper to resist arrest? Not unheard of by your typical sociopathic criminal. Now how many police-persons must attend and investigate a murder scene? Or stand about doing absolutely nothing for hours on end but using their physical presence to reassure the terrified and confused public? Give me Internet video justice any time over police failure to attend any alleged crime.

Shopkeepers in Denmark have to be very careful not to point their cameras at their own car parks or anywhere outside their own premises. Just in case they record a crime. So, if a shopkeeper or their staff hold an alleged criminal with no hope of the police attending, then what? Assume the perp murders the entire staff of a supermarket to resist arrest just outside the shop? You can't arrest a shoplifter inside the shop because no crime has yet been committed.

The concealed goods could still be whipped out at the checkout if the perp suspects they have been spotted. Or they dump the lot and say they have changed their mind about purchasing the goods. Or have forgotten to bring their credit card. So, the mass murderer [and alleged thief] is now innocent without video proof of any crime occurring because the police were too busy to attend. What if there are no witnesses to the subsequent bloodbath? It seems the shop cannot protect its own staff in precisely the outdoor situation where simple concealment of goods actually turns into a prosecutable crime.

Who do the police and security services go to when they have a major terrorism event? Yep. You've guessed it. They do the rounds of all the supermarkets and shopkeepers with security cameras just in case they [inadvertently] captured anything useful to the investigation. Only in crime-free Denmark! 😇

The online map showing areas likely to be inundated by the coastal high waters is down due to overloading of the website. Dogh? With the wind roaring in the trees all day I decided caution was the better part of valour and the trike stayed at home. More sad, cycling news from Denmark. A 46-year old mountain biker was found drowned in a pond after failing to return home.

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2 Jan 2017

2nd January 2016 Jack Frost.


Monday 2nd 31F, -1C, white frost, almost still and variable cloud after earlier, clear blue skies. Left late and  only walked down the road and back to fill the time before coffee and toast.

Nature provides many of the decorative patterns like Paisley and ferns. 

The frost was surprisingly choosy where it lay. All the matted grass verges were snow white. While the sparsely bladed, grass-like crops were largely untouched.

The Head Gardener called me to the conservatory to show me the amazing patters caused by the frost. Difficult to capture, but worth it, I think. I had to darken the images for maximum effect. What the human eye could clearly see was completely overblown with brightness by the camera.

Sun dog forming a rainbow arc around the sun.

Such fern patterns reminded me of my childhood in Cumbria and Scotland. Where the single glazed windows sometimes frosted over in winter. Those were the days of a simple coal fire in the lounge [living or sitting room] with the rest of the house usually unheated. Today's fluffy roof insulation was yet to be invented.

I can still remember the shock of getting into an ice cold bed with cotton sheets. And the pain of first going outside on winter mornings. When my smokey breath was taken away and the moisture in my nose instantly froze. Sliding effortlessly in the playground was always limited to those who had real leather soles. Rubber or composite soles did not enjoy the same degree of slipperiness but were probably safer on the corners, in now distant hindsight.

There has been an absence of frosts this winter so far. So I went looking for interesting images.

Not a frozen, northerly, conifer forest but ice crystals standing nearly half and inch high on the roof of a car.

I need to get moving if I am going out on the trike this morning. The temperature has crept up to 33.3F, +1C at 12am. Left after lunch for a quick shopping trip. Only 7 miles.

Click on any image for an enlargement.

1 Jan 2017

January 1st 2017 New Year's Message? Misread Status!!


Sunday 1st January 2017. Welcome to the New Year.  40F, 4C, windy and overcast with rain. I'm sure I'll think of something.. Spent the day in the shed avoiding the rain. Will that do? Stop complaining. Were you hoping for another rant? Well, I seem to have cured myself of obsessive tricycling. Now all I need is a fix for Internet abuse. 😉

Every new year I wonder how I could improve or perhaps change the blog's theme. But I really like the cloudy background so that's unlikely to change. It perfectly represent the cyclist's vulnerability to weather without any sense of threat. The clouds look mostly benign. With that optimism which often catches cyclists out with a drenching or just extended misery.

Some cloudy backgrounds are almost dystopian and therefore quite unsuitable as a cycling theme. If the sky looked like that all the time you'd never leave the safety of your bed! There would be bound to be zombies and vampires in the streets and cyclists are particularly vulnerable to both. Or so Netflix would have you believe.
I may drop the daily, weekly, monthly and annual mileage figures because they make little sense [to me] any more. Particularly now I am deliberately reducing my tricycling distances and regularity. I shall continue to shop [almost] exclusively by tricycle but shan't worry about the odd missed day. As I have so often in the past. When I was approaching 10,000 miles in a year I felt a gnawing absence if I missed a single day's ride.

I also promise not to watch so many YouTube videos of silly cycling and worse driving. They only make me dissatisfied and I don't need that. I am fortunate to be able to ride in Denmark where the cyclist has lots of real rights and even some respect because so many do it [cycle] anyway. As opposed to Gravely Blighted. Where cyclists have as much respect as something you bring home on your shoe from the children's playground in the park.

The British are absolutely tormented by status and class and it shows clearly in their driving and attitude to cyclists. Road rage is just another symptom of misread status. How dare you misread my status as a CF-4th class motorist with a common Franco-German Eurobox, even more commonplace alloy wheels, cheapo tires and a fluffy pink steering wheel cover!??!

You are a mere G- cyclist and therefore unworthy of continued life and liberty! Now stop bleeding all over the pavement and moaning like a pussy and get out of my bløødy way! My grandfather knew Lloyd George, you know! And, a mate of my sister's, friend's, second cousin once saw a minor "Corry" actor in the local post office! So that makes me far better than you! So there!

If you want to see serious status misreading at play watch the Russian activists denying selfish motorists their claim to drive freely on public footpaths. Stop Douchebags is the name of the game and they must have posted hundreds of videos by now. All with amusing titles and clear subtitles. You would not believe how these pompous, peasant upstarts behave when their blatant sociopathy is highlighted and recorded on camera! Life and death battles with AK47s and machetes over being caught red handed driving on a footpath? Seriously? You really couldn't make it up! The vigilantes are amazingly brave in the face of Putin's [utterly deranged] finest and his extended mafia.

Well, I'd better get back to the shed before I start ranting again. And nobody wants that. Do they?  😎