Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Another rung

On Saturday we cycled to Marlborough.

Nothing new about this really, except this time we had a task to complete. A tail wind pushed us all the way which was annoying since I needed no inspiration to get there and all the time knew that getting home would be extremely difficult. Our average speed to Marlborough was 14 mph compared to my usual average of 12.

Close to our destination, the Trep got hungry but, despite efforts, there was no food in any of the little villages. Our hosts did, however, supply us with two hot steaming mugs of tea to accompany us on our quest of looking around, in and under the 27 VW Transporter vans, cruely kept within the confines of their fence.

In the end, it came down to a race to the line between a yr2000 van with a muckier engine and weird feeling gearbox but better bodywork and a stainless steel exhaust and a yr 2002 van with a few rust spots, a dead-looking exhaust but a cleaner engine that started straight away.

First we took the newer one out which was OK to drive. We went in, to make an offer but grumbling about the bodywork, the exhaust and just that we liked the other more. The dealer shrugged his shoulders and dug out the 2000 model from the back and gave us the keys.

It rocketed out of the steep driveway and zipped up the road. This one was much more fun to drive. There was little fuel in it so we ragged it a bit then came back to base to do the deal.

After a good half hour of chatting about the trans-Canada trip with the cyclist-salesman we headed off home, leaving the van to be kindly tended, touched up, serviced, MOTd and all the rest for our reunion in two weeks time, holiday weekends and excursions to Peterborough permitting. The ride home was all the more difficult for that roaring headwind, excitement and a huge hunk of chocolate cake consumed at Applebys tea-room in Marlborough before leaving.

Miles cycled in March: 208

I should stress that my family has a policy that cars are purely for the pleasurable indulgence of getting bicycles to races and therefore, the purchase of a motor vehicle does not in any way conflict with my principles. In the same breath, however, I admit it will get used for the other vital indulgence of visiting friends who live off major rail routes and parking at the bottom of mountain footpaths which will keep me occupied for entire weekends on end. What it will not be used for is commutes to work and trips to the shops. I am, in fact, having trouble persuading the insurance companies that I only plan to drive around 3000 miles in a year.

1 comment:

Just a Girl said...

Oooh, shiny :)

I'm not surprised the insurers don't belive how little you plan to drive. Only grannies drive such a small amount (typically).