Sunday, 9 March 2014

Tatsfield in the fog and then Westerham in the sunshine...

Two early starts this weekend. We met at 7am on the Green on both Saturday and Sunday, heading out for the Tatsfield Bus Stop on a foggy Saturday morning and then to Westerham on a bright and sunny Sunday.

It's odd going up Beddlestead Lane in the fog; it's a long road and at least when it's clear you can work out when Clarks Lane is coming up. In the fog you rely upon the noise of cars.

Yours truly, Westerham, Sunday 9th March 2014.
Andy, Phil and I sat at the bus stop watching cars disappear into the fog and eventually mounted our bikes headed home. Andy had his racer again and turned left down The Ridge instead of riding to the Green (the off-road track halfway down the 269 is out of bounds for anything but a mountain bike) and Phil and I continued down the 269, the fog not really clearing until we approached the green.

Sunday was just Andy and I and we decided to head out for Westerham, somewhere we haven't been for a while, certainly not this year. I'd woken up at 0400hrs and hadn't really been back to sleep. At various stages I considered an 'abort' text, but once I'd gotten up and made myself a cup of tea I felt alright. 

A new routine for me is getting the car out of the garage. Fine during the week, but at weekends I can't get the bike out without taking the car out first. It's no big deal, but just another obstacle and I'd rather keep the car in the garage than leave it on the drive. Basically I'm turning into my dad, which is a good thing; he always put his car in the garage and now so do I.

So the car came out on the drive, followed by the bike and off I went towards the Green and then to Westerham. We decided to keep our heads down and not dawdle about and this proved worthwhile as we reached Churchill's statue (and General Wolfe's) at 0750hrs. The sun was shining and it was, quite simply, the first decent day of the year. There were blossoms on the trees, clear blue skies, daffodils, you name it, so we broke out the tea and the cereal bars and revelled in the greatness of the day.

Around 0820hrs we mounted the bikes and rode out of town, wondering when exactly we had last been in Westerham (I was guessing October time in 2013) and we both agreed that early starts are still the best as we get out early and we get back early and we get to ride for 22 miles. In the old days we used to get our heads down, ride to Westerham, buy a cream bun from the Co-op and then, after eating it, we'd jump back on the bikes and ride home. These days we're making mountains out of molehills. First, we've been leaving later, which means getting back later. Getting back later means we shorten the ride distance rather than leave the house earlier and as a result of this we only ride to what I'll now refer to as 'The Tatsfields' – in other words, the bus stop, the village or the churchyard. Yes, it's been getting boring. Alright, the slow way is pleasant but our mileage has been steadily going down because we haven't been meeting on the green at 7am.

So, we're going to try to get back to the good old Westerham days, the good old 44-mile weekends. Let's see how it goes.

We were back at Warlingham Green at 0902hrs and by 0920 I was padlocking the bike and locking the garage door. In total we rode just under 40 miles and hopefully next week, or soon, we'll be putting in the full 44 miles. Next week is going to be Saturday only due to commitments on all sides.

It was good to see Phil back on the rides; we haven't seen him for about a month.

Andy took this weekend's shot and the cropping is tremendous: just look at that cropping, it's perfect. Not a waste bin in sight, although I'm beginning to hate seeing photos of myself, this one included. That cropped hair cut looks a bit dodgy and as for those Tesco tracksuit bottoms, I've never liked them. Perhaps I'll keep on the other side of the lense until the hair grows out a bit and the tracksuit bottoms are in the wash.

The last time we were in Westerham was 8th September 2013. Click here for more.

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