My first real live reader…




Birthday present: premier outing for my new Garmin 810. It’s really easy to use which is relief after all my ‘network’ problems at home. YouTube will tell me how to get the most out of it

Map reference: Bealesy ( kindly diverted his Tuesday group my way as I missed a ride yesterday due to child sickness. He picked me up in Epsom and managed to craft an unhilly route round the local Surrey Hills. Clever stuff. 66k, 660m elevation

Carbs and caffeine: Burgandy & Black, St Martin Walk, Dorking, We only had coffee, but the cake looked good and I shall be going back for homemade soup and bread at £3.50. Bargain

We’ve moved. I’ve still got to get the printer working, transfer our music between computers and get Sonos synced, but we are in and I am back on the bike. I have been out a couple of times with Bealesy, and managed some other little circuits with pals Jacqui and Jen, but unpacking duty has stopped me recording these.

Our intention today was to go for a long endurance ride but, with a delayed start in the freeze, and a slightly slower pace, we restricted ourselves to a leisurely jaunt through the hills of Surrey, remarkably seeing very few actual hills. Of the five of us, there were two riders I didn’t know. I soon discovered one, Alison, was the wife of a clever cartoonist I used to work with at the Evening Standard ( I met him recently on the last outing to our favourite pub near our old home. Alison had sent him out for spuds, but he bumped into my family and me and we led him astray. I’m not sure if I apologised, Alison. Sorry. Anyway, he said then I should meet his wife who had caught the cycling bug badly, and I’m really glad I finally have. You would’t think cycling was such a social sport.

More remarkably, Jen mentioned this blog over coffee and the other rider, Trudy, said she had heard of it. Surely some mistake, I thought. But no, she really had. She had been sitting next to a spinning instructor at our mutual sports club and the coach had complained that I had made her sound like a heavy drinking night owl. I had mentioned that she was mainlining Red Bull during a class and had drawn my own conclusions about why that was, perhaps unfairly. Actually, I had thought she was rather fabulous and other-worldly… Anyway, the instructor (I daren’t mention her name as she apparently regularly searches for herself online and that was how she found my comment) showed Trudy my blog. Trudy told me she really enjoyed it and carried on reading.

Most of my readers are people who know me, and I have a fair few around the world who have just ‘found’ me. This was the first time where the two have crossed over. I don’t know who was more chuffed. She, that she had found a real live blogger, or me, that I had found a real live reader. Correction. I was definitely the most chuffed… and very flattered by her comments.

By another strange coincidence, Trudy’s  husband has signed her up for the Etape Du Tour this year… sound familiar, any of my regular readers out there? She asked me for any tips but I was dumbstruck in the face of my doppelganger… I shall have to give it some thought.

Note To Trudy: stay in touch, you have my number

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