Right where I want to be

Last night I got back after a long day at our Midlands factory. With a narrow window of opportunity, I raced in, threw on my kit, grabbed the singlespeed and darted (as much as you can dart with a steel frame, cyclo-cross wheels and one moderate gear) out of the door. Heading toward Gwaleod-Y-Garth, the sun embraced everything. The River Taff glittered. Families pottered past. Fly fisherman cast feathered lures from the protective environs of large rubber waders. The shoddy summer was firmly pushed to the back of everyone’s minds as a sunny South Wales proved that it has much in common with the Amur tiger – pretty darn rare and absolutely gorgeous.

After embracing some Voigtisms and teaching my legs a lesson for sitting down all day (‘Shuddup Legs!’ etc. etc.), I crested Eglwysilian and admired the panorama. Before me I could see the rocky mass of the Graig. The Garth cast its shadow over the glacial route of the River Taff. The Bristol Channel and Devon coastline swept out in a large arc, hid briefly behind the Garth before peeping out somewhere in the middle distance over the craggy heritage coastline.

There are times when you wonder why you ride. Times when your tired body leads to exercise ambivalence. Times when the rain dumps so monumentally that the bike is the last place you want to be. Times when the car – almost – seems like a viable alternative. But not yesterday. Not in those conditions. Not with that sun bathing your limbs and warming your soul. It was a firm reminder that cycling –as Yahuda Moon observed – puts you right where you want to be.

Moody Eglwysilan moor, looking away from the sea, not yesterday and not taken by me (thanks to Calissa). Still beautiful though……

4 replies »

  1. Lovely post, I was told by a friend recently “cycling makes you feel free”, I like that thought too. I embark on a week cycle ride around Ireland on Sunday and your post has reminded me how excited I am 🙂 thanks.

    • Thanks Jibberino. The bike – universally liberating, envigorating, fascinating and fun. Have a great time in Ireland (may the sun shine brightly and often).

  2. An inspiring post. I have recently purchased a Genesis single speed cross which I funded by sale of road bike, MTB, tourer and a less able single speed. Fitted with rack and guards I have been gleefully cycling in all directions with the Taff Trail my preferred route with the aim to push further and further and be a bit more adventurous. My style of riding becoming more relaxed and I am really enjoying the simplicity of the bike and so far find the gear ratio spot on.

    • Well done Rob. You won’t regret it. Over time, you’ll get more and more used to riding with one gear, with the knowledge of what you can ride fuelling the confidence to go further. There are very few things I wouldn’t now attempt on my single speed and you really can’t beat the simplicity. Enjoy the liberation!

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