Lots of things affecting my life are completely out of my control at the moment, and given my chronic lack of patience and general control freak tendencies, this is pretty hard going. Added to the feelings of anger and hurt following a break up (even if it was my choice), this was not shaping up to be a good week.
However, in order to retain a sense of balance, I’m concentrating on the good things and have enjoyed some of the little things in life this week.
On Monday, I decided to make my first attempt at the mighty Crow Road. Even at 10am on a Monday morning, there were some other cyclists going up it. Such is the notoriety of this climb, even the local bin men and roadworkers were offering to time me as I started up the road. Before long I had company and a friendly chap from one of the local clubs sat with me on the first bit (despite me telling him not to wait). He had a few kind words – most importantly that the start was the worst bit. This helped me dig in, and before too long I was up at the car park for a breather.
I’d intended to grab a quick drink and keep going, but I got chatting to another chap who was out on his motorbike and had stopped for a cigarette. He was a good few years older than me and looked not unlike Sean Connery. He’d had quite a life but we had a lot in common and we talked about some serious stuff for a long time. Being newly single, it was nice to be reminded that there are still possibilities when you least expect them, however when he told me he’d just realised he didn’t have his teeth in (not safe when riding a motorbike in case you crash and choke) we had a good chuckle and I realised he probably wasn’t the man for me.
After this, I had no oomph left for the rest of the climb so headed for home back down the hill.
On Tuesday night, while the dogs were out for their last visit to the garden before bed, I was stood in the corner by the garage and caught a hint of the most beautiful smell (quite surprising in this area of the garden!). I moved closer to the flowers nearby and found the source. I have honeysuckle in my garden. This is one of the many pleasures of the first summer in a new garden – when previously unknown flowers and plants finally emerge after the winter.
On Wednesday morning, I was greeted with the most beautiful blue sky and blazing sunshine (showing off the honeysuckle beautifully).
I decided to try the Crow Road again and made it to the top this time, keen to make the most of the sunshine before the rain was forecast to return the next day. I had a brilliant ride and really enjoyed the freedom of being alone in the hills again. And there were a LOT of hills.
As promised, the rain came on Thursday and rather than being annoyed, I welcomed it. It felt like weeks since I’d needed a brolly, and I looked out of my spare room window to see a slightly Himalayan scene of greenery and mist. My hill had all but disappeared (normally you can see the Crow Road from this window) but it felt so fresh and alive and I opened the window to breathe it in.
This room was repainted this week and is now a beautiful shade of duck egg (pale green). With such a stunning sight out of the window, I’m very tempted to swap bedrooms and move in here instead!
On Thursday evening I went to a promotional Ladies Night at one of the bike shops in town. Normally this kind of event would send me cringeing but I needed some bike shorts so decided to pop along – my lovely mum had sent me a little bit of pocket money and so I decided to use it for bike shorts. Gin was a close contender.
Trying on bike shorts proved utterly, utterly soul destroying. Believe me, even size 8 people have those moments in changing rooms and I spent most of the evening crying about it when I got home. I found a pair that didn’t create any extra bulges thankfully, but definitely needed the gin, which I now couldn’t afford.
However, as well as coming away with a pair of shorts and a well stocked goodie bag, I found out about some great things going on and I hope to be trying some of these out over the next few weeks.
Last night I made a wonderful curry (4 portions for less than £2 thanks to some cheap beef from the co-op) and enjoyed this while catching up on all the highlights of the day’s sporting events. A long-awaited win for Rossi at Assen, Scott Redding retaining his championship lead, an entertaining and controversial day at the Tour de France and a hard-fought win for Laura Robson at Wimbledon made for quite a day.
I’m also thinking of my family in Canada – they live in Calgary which has just seen some horrendous flooding. They are safe and their house is still standing thank goodness, but their city is going to have a hard time bouncing back. I am proud of their efforts to support their community and help others rebuild their lives. Looks like the Stampede is going ahead too – Hell or High Water is their call and it’s a great one.
Overall? Despite the undercurrents threatening to overwhelm at times, good things have happened so I’m calling it a good week.