Monthly Archives: July 2011

About a bike (II)

So back in February, I went along to Ryan’s workshop on Webber Street SE1, to be fitted up for my new bike. And this wasn’t just a matter of measuring my inside leg and deciding whether to go for a 51cm or 53cm seat tube. I was in there for about three hours. He took […]

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About a bike (I)

I think it was last October, at Courier Appreciation Day, when I got talking to Ryan about my big ride – not long after I had decided that it was actually going ahead. “What bike are you thinking of taking?” he asked. I hadn’t thought about it in great detail, but I’d more-or-less assumed that […]

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The luxury of self-pity

I woke up with a splitting headache and a sore throat so painful that I can barely speak. I’d love nothing more than to spend the day lazily curled up with tea and toast, feeling sorry for myself, but I can’t. Today’s the day I downsize – I have to reduce my possessions to no […]

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My greatest hypocrisy

I know this trip will force me to look at the world in new ways, and change my mind about lots of the things I’ve considered fundamental beliefs until now. But I didn’t think it would happen so soon. A month ago, I wrote: I think I’ll always read real books, even though everyone tells […]

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Wheelbuilding

In two months’ time I will be feasting my eyes on winding roads and distant horizons. But I’ve spent most of today focussing them very closely on a minute operation taking place with near-surgical precision mere millimetres from my nose. I promise you’ll see some truly awe-inspiring photographs of landscapes and people and bicycles over […]

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Planning and waiting

“So, how are preparations for your trip going?” This is all anyone ever says to me these days. I try to answer politely but, in reality, I’m completely fed up of this question, and of thinking about, talking about, and working through my massive to do list. As I found myself pointing out to a […]

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