Get shorty

Map reference: The Ripley tea run, an old favourite, 70k, flat

Caffeine and carbs: The Nest, Ripley

Jacqui and I had big plans, today, to use part of last week’s Windsor route and create a loop from home, incorporating Elm Nursery in Sutton Green. It would be a new pitstop for Jacqui and give us another winter ride for our collection. But I spent so long last night trying to work out how to hook up the ride that I had a hurty head by the time I went to bed. And every time I closed my eyes, I found myself following the route – left, quick right and straight on – so it was not a good night. I was quite glad when it became clear in the morning that Jacqui wasn’t feeling like a long mystery tour and we decided to treat ourselves to an old favourite instead. Rob, Jacqui’s husband, came too. Obviously the lure of Nest cake works for him too.

It was the right decision as the weather was distinctly dodgy, with gusty winds knocking us about and tree litter strewn all over the roads. Outside the Black Swan near Cobham, there was a branch across the road that could have been laid out by a sabateur if I had a suspicious mind.

At least I was warm enough, in part due to my new gilet, bought second hand for a bargain £5. Unfortunately, this evening Husband tried it on and he says it fits him perfectly and being white will be good for his commute. So I can say goodbye to that. I shall have to go back to my source…

Note to self: Do not leave nice kit lying about where it can be seen…

Castle train-ing

The twins: French bulldogs at Elm Nursery

Map reference: Windsor to Wimbledon, via Ripley

Caffeine and Carbs: Elm Nursery Farm Shop, 01483 755559, http://www.elmnursery.co.uk

Much excitement today as we all piled on the 9.12 from Putney to Windsor. Especially exciting for me as I had already been (admittedly in the car) to Raynes Park station, two schools in Kingston, done half an hour of car park duty, raced home, bolted to the garage and swung my leg over the pre-prepped bike and off down the hill.

But it really did feel like a school outing. Bealsey (Bespoke-Velo) guided us onto the cycle carriage, roughly in the middle of the train. A couple of women clearly thought we were showing off in our silly Lycra outfits, and who can blame them really. No one wants their carriage invaded by four exciteable women (and one laid back Aussie) on a brief escape from their daily routine.

We alighted at Windsor. Alighting being the exact opposite of what it felt like in cleats, and rummaged in all our weird pockets for our tickets at the gate.

And we were off. Up the high street and then on into Windsor Park. Past a king-on-horse statue whose creator killed himself for forgetting the stirrups (I haven’t checked this nugget from Bealsey) and onto a loop that took in a lovely new cake stop for me, Elm Nursery. We got a very friendly welcome and the cakes were fabulous. Why do I keep forgetting to photograph the cakes? They disappear so fast, maybe. I did photograph two resident French bulldogs, one half blind. Eventually I’ll find my way through the Microsoft filing system and post them here.

Then it was on past Ripley, a flooded Cobham, Esher and on and on (90k today) until we finally popped up, miraculously in Wimbledon again. I shall study the map. I don’t know how we got there, I really don’t.

Note to self: Don’t get angry at technology, it can hear you