Reduced numbers

For some unfathomable reason I woke up on Sunday morning at around 3:30 and couldn’t get back to sleep on account of my beloved’s snoring. So I rashly decided to get up and get on with some work. At 6:30 I loaded up the car with my baked goodies and headed down to where we hold “The Gentlemen”. I was surprised to find it was raining  but 5kms away at the start of the two-man team time-trial, the road was dry, although the sky looked menacing, and it was chilly. As a consequence of the weather, and another race over in Mandelieu, numbers were down on last year.

As first, despite, several down jackets, I was really chilled. So cold in fact that I wrapped myself up in the thermal car blanket. Finally, the sun came out and I began to thaw enough to start serving my cakes to the hungry hordes who fell on them like locusts. The pissaladiere disappeared almost as quickly as it was cut, along with the pain d’epices. The French find it vastly amusing that an English woman can dish up such delicious Nicois Classics. I’d brought a couple of new recipes along with my tried and tested banana cake, pain d’epices and carrot cake. A new chocolate cake recipe, which was very squishy and moreish, along with a lemon poppy seed cake that was light and crumbly, with just the right amount of tang. Following favourable feedback, these two will be added to the repertoire.

It was pleasing to see many of our past and present riders stepping onto the top step of the podium to collect the prize for their category. For the last two years, the cups have been handed out by Jeannie Longo. But she was a no show this year. I wonder why? I encouraged the chap we’re hoping to persuade to take over the role of M Le President to fulfill the role of Master of Ceremonies – he’s a natural.

Although many participants felt incumbent on trying a slice or two of anything they could lay their hands on, reduced numbers meant that I had a couple of cakes left over to add to the freezer for my forthcoming English classes. In addition, I’ll now start building my stocks for La Kivilev at the end of May. This is where the large chest freezer will be brought into service down at the club so as not to take up all the space in mine. Though I will have to take regular inventories or padlock the chest so as to ensure nothing goes walkabout – yes, really.

First up however will be next week’s birthday celebration for two of my English group. I’ll be away in the Basque country the following week so have promised them a slap up afternoon tea, including their favourite chocolate chip cookies, before I depart. The two of them have worked very hard over the last few months and are regularly scoring top marks in their English tests and homework, so I must be doing something right.

I’m in training for this Sunday’s sportif organised by my cycling coach who’s still taking it easy on account of his busted 3-times but finally healing collarbone. Today I rode with another of his clients who’s training for the Nice Ironman. We had a really good ride although I was feeling a bit fatigued at the end of it. Definitely overdid it on the interval sprints – watch out Cav!

My beloved has arrived safely in Australia after a couple of days in Dubai. I had hoped to tackle some pressing items on the “To Do List” before his return next Monday but our accountant has come up with a million and one questions about the year end accounts. The guy who’s handled everything for the past 5 years’ or so left and his replacement, who strikes me as being very efficient, has gone over everything with a fine tooth comb. I think I’ve managed to come up with an answer for pretty much everything.

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