Sunday, 5 February 2017

No cycling today, I couldn't face a soaking...

I can't even remember what the weather was like when I woke up yesterday morning. It was pretty much like it is today: cloudy, damp, puddles here and there and while I could have got up and gone out somewhere, probably an urban ride to mum's, I didn't, and I'm glad because it did rain, quite persistently at times, so I would definitely have got a soaking, something I'd like to avoid after last week's cold.

And talking of the cold, I still have it, hence not wanting to get wet. The cold has reached the best stage of all, that time when it becomes strongly evocative of the past for some reason. It's always the same. I'm feeling slightly stuffed up, but not ill, there's an occasional sneeze, but little cause to reach for the tissues and, not sure why, but I'm taken back somewhere, not sure where, but to a time gone by when, perhaps, I used to relax more, watch television and take things a little easier.

Burl Ives – fantastic!
Last week, at the height of the cold – streaming nose, a slight temperature, weariness – I spent the entire time indoors, watching episode after episode of Michael Portillo on a train on the Settle to Carlisle line followed by a western starring Gregory Peck and Charlton Heston, taking me further back to when I was a kid, sitting on the floor in front of the gas fire back home, a mini Bakewell tart and a cup of tea. Jean Symmons also starred. It was, of course, The Big Country and it seemed to go on all afternoon.

The week prior I'd had a sore throat. It only bothered me at night, but during the day seemingly disappeared and I was as ripe as rain, but then, last Saturday, the cold hit hard and I was out of action for the entire weekend. Today, Sunday, the weekend after, I'm still sniffing and I can't really taste what I eat (I hate that bit) so I'm going to use that as my reason for not riding; that and the fact that if I did get soaked I'd probably reinstate the cold and be ill for the whole of next week.

Outside it's still and cloudy, there has been rain, probably overnight, and it's highly likely to return. Yesterday I considered riding to Botley Hill or over to mum's, but when I looked outside at the birdbath all I could see was raindrops hitting the water. Today, right now, it's fairly dry, but I don't trust this sort of weather and would rather be fitter and happier next weekend, when Andy's back in the saddle.

So it's going to be another cosy weekend 'indoors' although I'm well enough to visit mum for some tea and cake later on, which is always nice. Between now and then, I'll chill out, watch Andrew Marr again, he's bound to be on, but having just switched the television on, Countryfile is still on and there's a rugged coastline with angry waves and a Radio One DJ talking about her Scottish upbringing, she's walking through an old salt house along the cliff edge, little villages with small harbours that, at one point, she said, were thriving. This is what I need, a bit of desolation, the sea and moody skies. I'm guessing that where she is is somewhere north of the border near Edinburgh. "I hope that I never take it for granted again," she said and I wished there was a whole programme of this person wandering around her old stomping ground.

There's a lot going on in the world at the moment and most of the issues are something to do with Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States. Alright, I'm not going to go on about it, but his immigration ban, which caused uproar last week, has been ruled unconstitutional. Trump plans to appeal, but right now those people he wanted to ban, temporarily, from the USA, are back, or on their way, and Trump ain't happy about it. He's also pretty pissed off with the Prime Minister of Australia who struck a deal with Barack Obama, which involved sending some 60,000 refugees to the USA. Trump must be SO angry! Not only has his immigration ban been halted, much to the delight of thousands of anti-Trump protesters around the world, but he's also about to take delivery of 60,000 refugees. He must be fuming with anger. It must be frustrating for him seeing his election promises to those who voted him in turning to dust.
Trump supporters get their message across...

A walk would be good and I might go and take a look at the bike, make sure it's alright. I know it's nice and clean, the chain is oiled and hopefully the tyres pumped up so it should be fine for next week's ride, assuming we're not going to get rain or snow. Blizzard conditions have been discussed by the newspapers, but there's no sign of it, not down here in the south at any rate. A colleague at work was talking about bitter winds in Huddersfield last week, but whether they're heading this way is anybody's guess.

I need to blow my nose so I'll say goodbye.

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