Well, not entirely, but almost. After a few weeks of being really mentally unsettled, things are at last calming down. I’ve just a few minor things to do this week and then I’m off again. this ride sees me heading for North wales from my home in Devon, and then back gain!!!

I chose to do this only after I completed the Cornish tour. I wanted to be on the road longer so I could get a feel for what it might be like on ‘the big one’ next year. It seemed a good idea at the time!!! After the last month or so I will have to ‘suck it and see’ regarding how much and how often I travel. The trouble with mental health is that you don’t really ever know how tommorow will be!! I have had to back off the training rides somewhat to get through, but I havn’t lost anything by doing it. I’ve just been sensible and really flexible about when I go out, how far and how intense. This means I have rested better, even though this has sometimes been an all day- in bed -,sleeping job!!

Cycling makes me feel better. Exercise always has and always will, provided I not feeling really bad before I begin, in which case, forget it, watch the telly, read a book and sleep, whatever the time of day. That is how I manage, it may be different for you, but I’m sure you can find ‘a way’ that works for you. I tend to pick much easier rides when I can or if I’m away, I slow everything down to a nice very gentle pace and try to chill. If I have a bad day on the bike, I ALWAYS take the next day as a rest, regardless of how long it was since the last. If I’m not brighter by evening, I take the next day as well. As I said, it works for me.

Since I last posted, I’ve changed a few things. Phil at ‘Sat Nav Warehouse’ sold me a great GPS at cost, which was very generous. So, I can now be a real saddo and spend hours plotting routes on the laptop to transfer to the unit itself, very nice. I still liked maps, so this is a departure for me and Wales will be the first time I’ve used it properly. With Tech stuff comes more issues eg: charging. I have a ‘Power Monkey’ and double solar panels to charge it. The ‘Little Monkey’ as it’s known is great and keeps all my stupid tech things going!!! Why I don’t just leave them at home I don’t know. Answers on a post card please!

I’m changing the bars and stem for some trekking style ‘Butterfly bars’. More hand positions and comfort, I hope. My poor old wrists are still really complaining after the front wheel incident and need all the help they can get. New Spd’s replace the old ones, which are very creaky now and Andrew Fudge of Fudges Cycle Store, has given me a Cane Creek ‘Thudbuster’ seatpost which really reduces the shock tranferred from the road to my back. Also, teepee no2 has arrived from Arapahoe Outdoor. I’ve used it and it’s wonderful. A big, but still cosy living area. I took it away for a stormy weekend and was really impressed. How many tents with one pole and no guy lines would you trust in storm. Great design I reckon.

Gear wise, I’ve settled on gas. It costs, but is light and convenient over the meths. Pans are smaller and lighter and I have a 1-2 season down sleeping bag. I know the disadvantages in our wet climate, but it’s half the weight and size and I have a silk liner, you just have to be really careful with it and pack it in a dry bag. I also acquired a Therma Rest Chair Kit from ebay, man is that thing comfy.

That’s about it really. Ready to rumble. I reckon three weeks should do the trick with time out to see friends in Bristol and North Wales from long gone climbing days. I won’t be rushing, mostly because I can’t, lol.

Take care and stay safe during the looney holiday period.