Now that the holidays are here, I’m being creative with when I ride and how long the route can be within my time pressures. The shop up the road is only a 7km round trip but on Sunday evening I planned to triple that the next day in an effort to maintain the weekly target of 100km. I only have 2 commutes this week as we’re off to France on a 10 day camping adventure at the end of this week.
But on Monday morning, I first had to get the camping gear out of the loft and make some enquiries over the phone about travel insurance and European car insurance and breakdown cover. While I was on hold, I spent the time making a chicken marinade for kebabs on the BBQ for dinner later (recipe below). £92 for 10 days for “peace of mind” in case the newly fixed engine conks out. This doesn’t include parts and labour because the AA doesn’t provide for this with campers. Next was packing the roof cargo carrier with afore mentioned camping gear. It’s the first time that we have used one so it took a while doing a dry run on the living room floor figuring out how to cram it in effectively.
After lunch, I hopped on the bike for a 20km trip to the shop taking the long way to get tortilla wraps for dinner. It was warm and sunny so I went sleeveless. I don’t want the French to think that I am yet another pasty Pom on holiday on the Norman coast…The crosswind would have been annoying had it not been nice and cooling. I then cleaned out the van, gaving it an annual vacuuming. There was plenty of grit and dried mud that had settled on the floor due to it being used as a winter storage facility for the 29er.
“Turkish” Chicken kebabs
- 1 cup of Greek yoghurt
- 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp honey
- Chilli flakes to taste
- Mix the ingredients into a bowl and add 1 inch diced chicken pieces. Cover and put in the fridge for at least 4 hours, overnight if you aren’t using breast. Skewer them up and put them on a low heat.
Yesterday morning, I had 2 errands. The first was to return the forgetful master11s equally forgetful friend’s wallet that he left in the van the day before. I tonned it along the Flitch and up along the country lanes to Dunmow. This was because of a tailwind and freshly pumped tyres. I went 25km and spent about 8 of those off road. In this 8km, I counted 25 people riding their bikes. A selection of young and old were out enjoying the traffic free bliss of riding, it was great to see. Of the other 17km on the roads, I saw 3 people on bikes and 2 of these were kids in the supermarket parking lot. It was windy but warm and made good use of the hedgerows for shelter, settling for a break near the end in a sheltered sunny spot to drink my water.
I dropped the wallet to a grateful lad with earphones around his neck holding his xBox controller and headed off to the supermarket to get food for dinner. The vegan sis-in-law is stayed overnight so I made Mediterranean roast vege and a Middle Eastern inspired couscous in her honour. It was tasty, cheap and plentiful so was very filling. Hopefully it will fill me up for #61 tomorrow…