Wednesday, January 12, 2005

What a Corker

I got the chance to ride my bike further a field last weekend.
I was working in Cork for the opening celebrations of their year as City of Culture. We did a couple of shows in the newly refurbished city centre which were going great till a 20ft TV screen started belting out music in the build up to a big firework display. The festival was organised by Spraoi – Waterfords festival organisation, which begs the question – why Cork City of Culture and not Waterford?
But I have to say the city centre did look good – a lovely backdrop to our show, and I’m sure people visiting the city this year wont be disappointed.
I went out on the bike on the Saturday morning, with a vague notion of heading towards the coast – but when you forget to bring a map this isn’t such an easy proposition. I set off in the direction I thought the sea should be, but after about 5 miles realised I was probably travelling further inland. So I decided to just head up a steep hill to see what I could see from the top. It was a lovely crisp, clear day – a nice change after the storms of the day before. It felt good to give the bike a good ride after the excesses of the Christmas period and the hills really got my blood pumping. Getting to the top of the hill confirmed that I was nowhere near the sea, but the view of Cork was nice and I did see a house with its own conservatory – a big white sphere stuck in the garden – made me wish I hadn’t dropped the digital camera last summer. The ride back down the hill was fast and exhilarating, but cold, as I had forgotten my hat and gloves. I got back in plenty of time to prepare for the show, then later finished the day with a swim, sauna and a game of cards in the hotel bar – lovely.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Think Bike

Those of us who cycle are aware of the thinking time that riding your bike gives you. Thats one of the main attractions for me, along with combining exercise and travel in one therefore freeing up more of your day - why doesnt everyone do it?
Anyway, apparently Einstein came up with his theory of relativity whilst riding his bike and to celebrate Einstein Year (Whats wrong with Einstein Day?) some Boffins have come up with a new BMX trick called the Einstein Flip
From the Guardian - "The stunt was created by Cambridge physicist Helen Czerski in collaboration with professional BMX rider Ben Wallace. Ms Czerski claims the stunt is "pushing the boundaries of what it is humanly possible to do on a bike". "( post title links to article)
I've always loved seeing what people can do with a bike, I'm not bad with the unicycle and ride an 8ft one but I think thats easier then pulling a wheelie.
I'm travelling down to Cork this weekend to do a show and i'm planning to bring the bike aswell so I can see all those things that you miss when your in a car.
Happy New Year.
It was my first time on the bike for a week and a half yesterday and I had a tail wind easing my journey on the way in which had died down by the time I was going home making the return journey quite pleasant as well.
I also had that rare occasion of another cyclist riding alongside me for a chat. I think it was the same bloke I chatted to a couple of years ago – we talked about the nice wind that morning and the various alternative routes of getting from Belfast to Lisburn. He uses the tow path quite often, which is a nice route but one I don’t use too often because of the glass, uneven ground, and too many dogs. He wasn’t going the whole way to Lisburn last night but I was glad of the short chat – I think I’d be too shy to start one myself, but it does make you feel part of a wider community.