Yet again I find myself chomping at the bit to go out for a ride. I managed to slip out at lunchtime for a quick thrash around Cap d’Antibes but was left wanting more. Sadly, I’m still hosting a whole variety of tradespeople two weeks after they were supposed to have finished! This is playing havoc with my schedule.
To be fair, it’s not been all bad. Their workmanship has largely been exemplary. The only issue, and it’s a personal one, has been the replacement trap doors in the flat. The previous ones were made for me by a carpenter to match my door surrounds and so I’ll shortly be replacing the new replacement ones. These new bog standard replacement door traps don’t quite cut it and mine are just that wee bit too small. However, I’ve discovered that I’m not the only one with this problem. Either the builders cut too large new access holes or the measurements taken were inaccurate. Either way, it doesn’t really matter. Of course, for some of my neighbours, particularly those with wallpapered walls, the end result is far from attractive and they’ll either have to lump it or totally redecorate their hallways, a far more expensive proposition than a replacement door and surround.
This week I had hoped to be spending days out on the bike enjoying the still mild weather, instead I’m spending way too much time cooped up inside. The only upside is that I’m tackling my backlog of work. Just as well as, once the builders have departed, everything will need a thorough clean. There’s dirt and dust everywhere. Still I have been enjoying the break from housework – who wouldn’t? I could have used Bob the Robot to keep the floor dust in check but it’s all proved too much for him. He’s gone on strike and won’t recharge. I’ve got to return him for a once-over and, possibly, replacement parts.
This week end it’ll be key to log plenty of kilometres in the saddle as next week I’m making one of my briefish trips to the UK for a Dental Exhibition – I know, I lead such an exciting life! – and to see my Dad. As a consequence, my training plans have rather gone out of the window in my quest to just ride as much as I can before the cold weather sets in. But hopefully that’s going to be many more weeks off.
Already, I’m making plans for next year. By the end of next month, I’ll typically have the following year pretty much planned out. My trip to the start of next year’s Tour de France in Yorkshire was booked about four months’ ago and I’ve just made plans to visit friends and clients in Italy next year to watch the latter part of the recently announced Giro d’Italia. In addition, I’ve selected the route and hotels for next year’s trip to the World Championships in Ponferrada, Spain. We’re turning it into a two week holiday, with bikes, which will give us plenty of opportunity to explore areas which we’ve never before visited.
My husband was pretty adamant that he wouldn’t be following the Tour of the Basque country next year, so that might have to be a solo road trip with what by then will be Tom IV. How time flies! But maybe he’ll relent by the time next Easter comes around. Just in case, I’d better book a hotel room large enough for us both. In truth, next year’s viewing of cycle races will follow a pretty similar agenda to this year’s, although I am hoping to squeeze in another trip to the MotoGP in either Spain or Italy.
It might seem as if all this planning and preparation takes away from the spontaneity of just rocking up to watch something but I find it’s quite the opposite. It gives me time to look forward and savour what’s on the horizon without stressing about whether or not I’ll find accommodation or have time to go. If it’s not in the diary, it’s easy to overlook or rashly commit – or be committed by my beloved – to something else.