9.30am Lionels place Nelson
Spent morning removing the old beard ready for a fresh start as I become a cyclist. Heading off this morning
9pm Motueka top 10 holiday park
I am now officially a cyclist! I’ve had the easiest of first days after an initial glitch. Only 5 minutes after setting off I had my first puncture! Luckily Lionel was acting support crew and picked me up to go into town where I bought two new “puncture proof” tyres and new tube. Nick at the bike barn was great and got on to it straight away. Also got new rear brake blocks fitted. Didn’t charge for fitting and Gave me a good discount of over 40% (perhaps he’d heard about my virgin bottom from his colleague?)
Bought a cheapish pair of trekking shoes at the Warehouse which will double up as bike shoes, and some funky skull lights which you can strap onto your bike helmet from R and R. Lionel had to get off to meet a client so we said goodbye for now and he will come and meet me on his motorbike along the trail in a few days
By time I’d got a few bits of shopping from supermarket, sushi lunch and a flat white fix it was 1pm and time to go!
As you will now by now it was another sunny day in Nelson and all in the world was bright and cheery, especially when wearing Lionel’s tinted glasses which brighten up everything even more. Nelson has a good feel about it and is pretty near my top spot if I were ever to get chance to live here.
So on to the intriguingly named “taste trail”, which is a mostly off road flat cycle trail to Motueka some 54km away. It is scenic and mercifully flat all the way apart from one hill after Ruby Bay. It was a new cyclist’s dream ride. I am eternally grateful to all involved and to Lionel for suggesting this route. Far more tougher tests lie ahead but this was heaven. After being a walker for so long I now had a sense of dizziness at the speeds I could accomplish while sitting down and without lugging a pack on my back (albeit sitting a bit tenderly but for now I am now well padded in those regions). I felt moments of glee as I passed runners and other cyclists, I even clocked 20km a hour according to my GPS. I reached Rabbit Island after about 2 hours and then got the ferry over to Mapua. The ferry is cool, there is a timetable but you can ring, text or wave your arms wildly to see if skipper will come sooner. Clive, today’s skipper popped over a bit earlier after I text. He could see me a mile off in my floglow top!
Lionel, the mischievous devil, was waiting to surprise me and we had an ice cream and another deep and meaningful chat before planning another meet up in a few days time before I get too far away!
So all in all a good start, highest number of kms I’ve done in one day since I started and I have only cycled about 4 hours. Bum is a bit sore but not bad, similarly the knees are sore but OK. I’ll spend a bit of time in morning in Motueka looking into my route to west coast and beyond, mileages I need to do, how will get myself and bike back etc.
Must remember to stretch quads before I go to sleep.