What a difference a day makes

I think Teasi and i have arranged a cease-fire.

This morning my host said the bike path behind his house led to the canal, so I set out to go that way. As it reached a fork and I switched Teasi on, he protested. After cycling around for about 20 minutes, I gave up trying to use “my” route and just put in “Blakedown” to get me going in the right direction, intending to switch back later. This proved to be such a good decision, that I didn’t change back, just put in the exact address when I was getting closer.

Teasi sent me on quiet roads, bike paths and canal towpaths. Only very occasionally did he send me short stretches on busy roads, where there was usually a bike lane. But the most important thing was, he didn’t keep „screaming“ at me, when I went wrong, just rerouted me. Sometimes I noticed this when it was showing a further distance to my destination and could turn around and see what turning I’d missed. I realised that he had always been trying to get back onto the present route. Anothe advantage was, that he now seemed to accept that i was cycling on the left. In the meantime, I had noticed that he always seemed to send me the wrong way around the roundabouts, which obviously I didn’t do on the roads, but stopping to cross over each road in turn. (There is usually a zebra crossing with traffic-lights).

So it wad a good day, giving me time to appreciate the scenery and, of course, this was the closest I would Bu to „home“, the midlands, where I spent the first 19 years of my life. The canals were busy today and I stopped to watch people operating the locks. This is fascinating to watch.

But what would a day be without a challenge! Teasi sent me on a stretch of towpath that was very narrow, fortunately quite smooth, so I felt fairly safe. Then I was told to turn off, but there were only steps. I didn’t even try to push or carry Bonnie up there with all her luggage, but what was the alternative? I hadn’t passed any walkers and there didn’t expect any cyclists, so I lay Bonnie down (there wad nowhere to prop her up, without the risk of her falling ovet inq the canal) and walked up the steps onto the bridge. It wad a quiet country lane with no pedestrians in sight. If I’d waited long enough, maybe a cyclist would have come along… I stood there looking helpless while two cars passed, then I flagged a huge tractor with an enormous trailer down. He opened the foot and I politely asked, if it wad possible for him to help me. He parked on a slightly wider stretch of the lane, climbed down and er carried the bike up together. People are just so helpful here.

As I stopped to connect Teasi to a power bank, a passing cycling couple asked if i needed help. I got the impression they were disappointed when I said „no, thank you“. They asked where I was going etc and I told them I grew up near there. When I told them Hinckley, he said I once won a bike ride there!

There were several hills shortly before the end and by this time i didn’t even try to cycle up them. It was still a longish day, as I didn’t arrive until 7, but a much less stressful one.

Your stats for day 13 Bradely to Blakedown:

102 km. 613 m. ascent, 7:48 bike-time, 9:55 total.

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