Saturday 12 November 2011

Slippy Leaves and Sloppy Mud!

Leaving the cafe

Aaah, the challenge of finding a title for each blog entry!

November already!  After a night of torrential rain, the morning of the November ladies ride dawned with blue skies and sunshine.  Leaves are dwindling as autumn tumbles into winter, the days shorten and the sun sinks lower in the sky.

However, the ladies turn outs are not dwindling, which is great news.  I was expecting two newcomers, but only one turned up, and with twelve more sets of wheels and a hasty photo (nearly forgot!), we set off up Mannings lane to cross the lights with the A41 and into the lanes.

What wonderful weather, no wind and warm sun.  As we passed the zoo I regailed anyone who was listening with the fact that a week ago on my way to work I was watching a couple of Orang Utans, catching the early morning sun.  Not a claim many can make on their daily commute.  (I saw Santa's reindeer last week!).  Part of the route is my evening return from work, so it was nice to see it in the daylight for a change (trying to memorise where the potholes are!).

After a couple of small climbs, we negotiated the gated track from Mollington to Dunkirk; then around to Capenhurst past the Pinfold.  A few more lanes saw us on the main A540 into Chester, a necessary evil in order to reach Eureka Cafe.  We were fortunate that we had a lull in the traffic, as the other main roads appeared to be quite busy, early Christmas shoppers no doubt.

We were welcomed as ever and planted ourselves outside to catch the November sun, still quite warm if you were not in the shade.

Mud, glorious mud!

Our return route took us back down the A540, to Woodbank, where we turned right back into the lanes, and over the relatively new Lodge Lane crossing.  At this point we turned right, to pick up the track to take us to the Greenway near Sealand.  And this was where we encoutered the extemely sloppy looking mud.  All negotiated it gracefully, and we were able to continue through.

By the time we got to the greenway, people were able to drop off home so that I was left with two ladies back near Kingsway shops.

14 ladies, 18 miles.

(more photos to follow!)

Wednesday 9 November 2011

Big night at the Bike factory with Chris Boardman

Indeed! a few ladies joined many other Chester cyclists and CTC members for a big night of stuff.

Mike Cross, from our Chester & North Wales CTC presented a certificate of merit, marking the longstanding relationship and support from Dave and the bike factory over the past 70 or so years, with previous managers and incarnations of the shop.  (Originally Masons I understand, I remember it as Davies Bros in Cuppin Street - in fact I briefly worked there for a summer season!).

Then Chris told us a few tales from his cycling achievments, which was enjoyable and entertaining, and his colleague told us about his new bike range.

Then it was networking and chatting and photos and signing, I did manage to pull together all the CTC ladies I could muster - if you look really carefully you will see Chris in among us!

Then a few of us retired to the Spital Vaults behing the shop - and who should come in after 10 mins but the entire Bike factory entourage and Chris (again!).  Sprung!

(photos will follow!)