Terrible, depressing church service on the radio from Accrington. I‘m expecting Alan Bennet to star a short monologue.
Yesterday was ‘marathon cycle ride’ day. I went out with the husband of a good friend who is a very keen cyclist. He’s 10 years younger, has an exceptionally good bike and all the gear - including the clothes and shoes. He is also spectacularly fit. I don’t know him very well - it could have been a bit like one of those awkward ‘father/son’ bonding exercises that end badly - but it was fine, in fact it was pretty good. I’ve cycled this route before myself - but never in ‘competition’. Starting at my house - to Fairlight Village, then Pett Level, along the beach to Rye Harbour, then Rye town - down to Camber Sands, along the coast then up to Lydd - over to Dungeness (for a break) then up the coast towards Folkestone as far as New Romney and back to Lydd to return home via the same route. Going there was fine - coming back was very difficult - against the wind on the flattest landscape I’ve ever seen. It took about 4 and a half hours and was just under 60 miles. Really enjoyed it, caught the sun and appreciated the exercises. Didn’t humiliate myself either.
Camber is pretty fantastic - miles of beautiful beaches - lots of windsurfers - the coast road towards Dymchurch is also fantastic - I’d love to live there.
|Sea Defences at Camber looking towards Dungeness|
|Mothballed nuclear power station|
Had a bit of recovery time when I got home but feeling good now - need to do at least one decent ride every week to build up a bit more strength and get rid of some weight in the middle. The way back yesterday was made much harder by having to climb Battery Hill at Fairlight - right at the end, I had to walk it - I’m nowhere near fit enough to get to the highest point in Sussex from sea level in half a mile.
I shall be cleaning the house today and doing washing - nothing exciting. I had planned to cycle over to Eastbourne for the last day of the Airshow - or to Bexhill to see the new Peter Blake exhibition - but I might leave that until later in the week.
I have 3 projects starting tomorrow - only one will be paid. The other two are ‘difficult’ portfolio pieces. I also have to invoice for something that’s ‘political’.
I started writing this blog about 10 years ago - when blogs were fashionable. I wasn’t having a great time - I was in the process of moving from Liverpool back down south after my mother’s death, the end of a relationship, just about to hop into a financial crash that wiped me out and left me in a lot of debt and other things, like trying to distance myself from ‘friends’ who I didn’t want in my life, a nasty episode with a neighbour who had taken against me and a thug who had tried to steal one of the dogs. I started really because I just needed to vent - I knew few people here and most of my posts were riddled with rants and swearing. I live on my own so talking to the TV doesn’t really work. At the time, there were far more personal blogs and I found them interesting and engaging - in particular - I cane across The Age Of Uncertainty - and have followed it ever since. The owner of the blog has now decided to close it, and I totally understand why - it’s explained very well in his final post. Over the years, reading Philip’s posts haves encouraged me to at least attempt to be coherent and lucid, try and improve my spelling and grammar, and actually have something to say - rather than just venting (I’m not sure how successful I am at that). Also, it’s reminded me that I am not the only person in the world who has problems and challenges, we all tend to gloss things over in real life but can be a bit more honest when talking ‘in the dark’ - and that I’m not the only person who finds interest in the dullest and strangest places. So, for all of that and much more - I’d like to thank him.