Made it out after work.

Made it out after work. Took the Inbred and did the usual Uni ride. It was great fun as usual, highlight today was surprising a deer in the woods. It ran onto the path in front of me, then along the path for a short way before diving off down the hill deeper into the woods. I managed to over-cooked the brakes a bit on the downhill track into Bathampton, actually got smoke coming off the pads. The bike was making a very strange creaking noise though. I’ve greased the seatpost/frame and seatpost/saddle joins, and lubed the chain. Hopefully that will fix it.

Time for a shower now.

You’re only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!

Quiet day at work. Spent the afternoon working from home on some training, then had a Dr’s appointment. Had to pick up some pills afterwards and decided to use their new spangly Pharmacy. They took my money and made me wait about 5 minutes before telling me one lot were out of stock and they only had half of the others and I’d have to go back tomorrow to get the rest. Given that I’ve already run out this is somewhat annoying. Guess where I won’t be going in the future?

Now sat watching the new DVD of The Italian Job.

Went for a spin on

Went for a spin on the road bike today for the first time in ages. Rode the 8 miles out to a friends house, then we both did another 12 miles or so along the valley before joining the canal. After a bit Ian decided that the canal was a bit harsh for his wheels and headed back up the hill to pick up the main road. Probably a good job he did as I got a puncture about a mile later. I did about 24 miles in total.

Had a reasonably quiet weekend

Had a reasonably quiet weekend so far. Went to Asda yesterday, then went to the tip twice.

Had a friend, my parents and her parents round this evening for a BBQ to christen the almost completed garden. The weather held out and we had a very pleasent time. I’m now sat polishing off the remains of the 4th bottle of wine, and rewatching A Beautiful Mind which a slightly fictional account of the life of the mathematician John Nash. To be honest, I preferred the book.

Managed to fit in another

Managed to fit in another lunchtime ride today. The sun was shining, it was nice and warm and my Stiffee was ready and waiting. The ride was remarkably uneventful. We did the usual route only deviating to try riding down a flight of steps which had been calling out to us to try them for the last few rides. The steps were a bit on the tame side of things but provided an interesting diversion from the tarmac cycletrack we were riding along at the time.

Nothing else interesting has happened, my request for a new laptop was denied having previously been approved, and work remains busy. At least there is a long weekend just around the corner.

What a wonderful weekend

And no bikes were involved at all.

Friday morning I got an email suggesting we went away for the weekend to try out the new tent. We had a prior commitment that evening with a BBQ at my parents but decided we would go early Saturday morning. The question remained as to where we would go though. I suggested we went via BCH Camping in Trowbridge so I could get a few things first, so the suggestion was we would head to the New Forest.

9am Saturday morning came and we headed out. We stopped off in BCH Camping where I picked up a first aid kit and a camping table. The next stop was Ringwood for breakfast, we also picked up a Forestry Commission leaflet showing their campsites. The first one we went to was full, so we nipped around the corner to the next one and joined the back of the queue of cars. As we were waiting a man came out carrying a big sign saying “Camp site full” he walked down one side of the queue an the walking in front on my car and paused, our hearts sank. Then, luckily, he carried on walking and put the sign out at the back of the queue. We paid our £10 or so to camp and were told to pitch the tent where we liked. We found a suitable space and set the tent up.

We had a walk planned for the afternoon, so after a diversion to pick up some food for dinner we parked the car. The walk was meant to take 2.5 hours or so, with extra time for viewing the wildlife, and there was a promise of a pub halfway round. We got to the pub via a slightly non-standard route, only to find that it wasn’t open in the afternoons which was annoying. We walked back, pausing to try and identify the type of deer which was grazing (Roe and Red in different places). We trundled back to the campsite and had BBQ’d spicy lamb kebabs and venison burgers for dinner. We ended up turning in for bed at the rather early time of 10:15, but both of us were exhausted.

Sunday morning dawned, first with glorious sunshine and then a small shower of rain. Breakfast was BBQ’d sausages, some of which were more edible than others. We broke camp and headed down to Sway. Sway was where I had helped out at several Cub pack holidays many years ago. We stopped off to buy some bread, ham, and cheese for lunch and had a wander round. The hall we used to stay in didn’t appear to have changed much. We drove up the road and stopped off at the first set of woods, the home of many a widegame and bivouac building session. We walked through and round the woods for an hour or so then went up the road to another wood for another walk. This took us 80 minutes or so, and we sat on the field at the edge of the carpark to eat our lunch.

Next stop was the coast. We drove down and found ourselves at Barton on Sea. We walked along the beach, then had a paddle along the water. A mad scramble up the cliff, and a walk back along the top saw us at the ice-cream shop. A particularly wonderful Vanilla and Choc-Chip was the order of the day. Unfortunatley this drew to a close a fantastic weekend. All we were left with was a drive home, and in my case, sunburnt shoulders and forehead. We rounded of the weekend with a takeaway Chinese eaten in the garden. Why can’t all weekends be like this? Spontaneous, virtually unplanned, and very relaxing.

Summer seems to have returned

Summer seems to have returned today, and with it my enthusiasm.

After work I rode home, read some emails, got changed and went out on the Stiffee. The sun was shining, it was nice and peaceful and was just a wonderful ride. Once I was off the main road I hardly saw anyone else, I just pottered along at my own pace. I tried the new bit of singletrack behind the university again. Last time I tried it it was a bit wet under-tyre and quite slippery. Things were better today although still slippery in places. Not much light gets in through the trees which leaves things a little damp and makes it tricky to ride with sunglasses on. Moss covered rocks and worn-smooth roots can still catch you out.

I came back along the canal and through town. The ride took me about 90 minutes, quite slow but I was out to enjoy myself not sprint round the loop.

Sodding typical

A couple of days ago I went to take the cranks off the Stiffee so I could adjust the chainline, only when I took the crank bolts out I couldn’t find my Shimano tophat adaptor which allows you to use a normal crank extractor with a splined BB. So off I went to Chain Reaction to buy a replacement. In fact I bought two as they were cheap, along with a Shimano BB extractor. The parts duly arrived this morning and I’ve just got around to altering the chainline. All goes smoothly and I go to put away my tools. I put the new adaptor safely away where I can’t lose it, and promptly find the original one. Now I have three of the sodding things of various styles, and I bet I won’t be able to find any of them next time I need one.

No riding today, the weather was dull and grey for most of the day and I had enough of a hangover to just vegitate in front of the TV catching up on programs TiVo had recorded for me during the week.

Last night was spent recoding some of my PHP with help from Matt to cope with the change to register_globals=off in the latest version. I realised I’d originally done it all in an immensely stupid way, and have now turned most of my code fragments which were in seperate files, into functions all contained in one file. It should in theory make everything much easier.