Today I was in the mood for a little bike ride and I’m glad I got out for one.
On the one hand, going for a little ride in London is easy enough, but it’s different to those days when I lived in a suburb of Milton Keynes where I could just spend a few minutes riding out to the edge of town and then find myself on country lanes.
But still, I’m grateful that I can just decide to ride for no reason other than the ride (well, alright, and a stop into the supermarket because I have a hankering for pork schnitzel).
So I did just that today: a pootle up towards Hampstead (I got my second best PB going up Arkwright Road, a sharp little 7.5% climb), and a moment’s breather at the top (Whitestone Pond, above, is one of the highest points in Greater London).
And then a nice steady downhill all the way to Swiss Cottage with a little rolling around the quiet backstreets eyeing up the big houses between there and Belsize Park.
The fact that I can combine this sort of mindless noodling about with a perfunctory stop at Waitrose with my quick-release Topeak pannier bags to grab some supplies is just immensely gratifying. I loaded up with dinner and drinks and then headed home again. Simple. And so rewarding.
I found this neat Flickr group the other day, Bike 180, where people just post pictures of/from their rides.
I think the idea is you aim for 180 days of cycling adventures inside of the year. That would be a stretch for me this year, but it would be nice to tot up how many cycling days I’ve had so far in 2020.
Anyway, the pictures people post to that group are just lovely and give me immense wanderlust – wanderlust for just getting out there.