Bit bored, nothing interesting to do - go for a bike ride!

Dropped the kids off, did some work-from-home stuff, but then slowly realised that crunching numbers at home, alone at a PC is tedious. It was OK for a time as oddly some of the stats were interesting [!], but then that moment passed and I gradually got more and more bored until I realised that a depressive fugg had come over me. Looked at a couple of local mountain bike web sites, but they were all a bit rubbish and lacking any sparkle, so they further added into my bored status. This also wasn't helped in noticing that my new stupidly expensive North Face jacket has a hole in it. Started to get a bit angry then, but that's a pointless state to be in so I got my bike out and went for a quick spin up the hill and into the mud. Really didn't expect much from the ride as I wasn't in the best frame of mind when setting off. However, my new "avoid the granny ring" style soon had me sweating away and the effort of pushing the pedals around made me more interested in where I was than where I'd been. Within two miles I was happy again.

Didn't really go far, didn't really do much; top of Colley Hill and a spin around. Got reasonably muddy, picked up some litter, got some air off a few tree roots and rocks - well, this is entirely relative as CERN probably couldn't measure either the time elapsed whilst airborne or the gap between my tyres and the ground. Nothing much but enough to make me smile.

Interestingly the mud has slowed me down a tad. Either that or my PACE is a slower bike than the Tassajara? It probably is, given that it has a silly 21" top tube and a 50mm stem [don't you love the standardisation of measurement in mountain biking by the way?]. The Tassajara is much more stretched out at 24" and 100mm. The PACE doesn't half turn fast though. It's this shortness of bike that's made me think of changing it to something a bit longer, yet retaining modern frame angles. Current thinking seems to be long, low and slack. Cotic anyone? So really nothing more than that age old consumerist issue; keep what I have and enjoy it for a few more years, or spend some money and buy something else that will enhance my life by pretty much zero - it's just a bike! I could be on a nice orange Cotic for perhaps £500 give or take a few pence. I'd be a little bit faster, a little bit more secure when on some Welsh mountain, perhaps even do a clear run of some black section at Coed Y Brenin. But then trail demons hit back saying that if I was actually slower, then it'd be ammunition for the "all money, no skill" naysayers! Choices, choices.

It's a thought though isn't it? Get a Cotic, bung on it my spare 100mm Magura Menjas and have a lightweight trail demon for Surrey. Get a spare pair of 140mm forks for when out in the wilds.....

And once again I didn't feel the need to take a sat nav device out on a local ride. It bemuses me how people get so lost on essentially rides in their back gadens. I'd hate to be so insecure as to need one around here to be honest. Surely it's not so hard finding your way around Surrey's bridleways? But then I have been out with some very well educated people that seem literally unable to tell left from right, or up from down so a bit of navigational ineptitude may be more common than I realise. Indeed I once worked with a clever guy who drove from Croydon to Kingston-upon-Thames using the M25. He did a full circumnavigation, returning to Croydon before realising his mistake. He was gone over ten hours. He tried to hide it but the mileage log for the company van showed 180 miles that day. Now if he'd just moved from somewhere like Sunderland and had no map of London, fair play. But this guy was born and bred in Croydon, drove for a living, and had done so for 30 years. He got hopelessly lost every single time he went out. Actually I'm making him sound bad. That's mainly because he was and it was a mystery to everybody why he remained in employment.

As for the North Face jacket, well that'll teach me to stray away from quality Gelert stuff now won't it?

Oh yes, before I forget. TKMaxx seem to have gotten in a load of long sleeve wicking tops for a tenner. Some are quite thin, but others have a nice brushed inner surface and are toasty warm. All are quite long in the body so ideal for cycling. I've bought a good handful of them so am fully set for the winter. Just waiting to find a decent pertex top for rational money.

By-the-by, there's some ad on telly where the guy can't fly a kite. It looks like he's on Colley Hill but the weald is all wrong - for instance no Leith Hill and the weald is too flat. But each time I'm up there I see bits of land featured in the ad. I'll have to post it up when I remember who it is for. Obviously a crap ad then!

Now, back to crunching some numbers for work ;¬)