A couple of months ago I took up cycling – a mode of transportation I hadn’t used since I was a teenager, except for a couple of attempts here and there during my adult life. After being critically ill last winter I had lost most of muscle tone and had absolutely no stamina so I decided, at the age of 70, it was time to do something about it. Since my travel plans had been trashed for the year, I took the funds I had saved for those adventures and I bought a wonderful e-Bike, the #RadRover. It offers pedal assist for climbing the inevitable hills. It has 5 levels of assist and so far I’ve only used 3 of them, level 4 on the brutal climb up the Picadilly Road past the golf course. Most of the time I don’t use it at all, or perhaps at level 1.
I’ve built up from barely being able to ride 2-3 kilometres (1-2 miles) to now easily covering anywhere from 4 to 7 or 8 miles. Quite often a part of my morning ride takes me through the Sussex/Sussex Corner Nature Trails. It’s lovely in there and much of the path traverses the shore of the stream. This year, the water level is extremely low as a result of the unusual drought we’ve experienced for several months.
Today, on September 1st, there was a distinct nip in the air, although the temperature was only 5ºC. Despite my polar fleece gloves, my fingers were decidedly cold when I eventually got home. I love the Nature Trails. It’s peaceful, especially early in the morning when only a few walkers and dog walkers are around. Everyone is very respectful and I usually stop and let people pass by comfortably.
At one point a fox scooted across the trail a few yards in front of me. He was no doubt heading to the stream for a drink. Sometimes I see deer, but not today. I did, however, discover a fairy’s home that I hadn’t noticed on previous trips. Perhaps I was travelling more slowly and taking more care to notice things around me.
I wished the inhabitants a good day and then went on my way.
It is September and true autumn (and what follows) isn’t that far away. But in the meantime, I’ll enjoy bright sunny mornings, cool crisp air and watching the leaves turn colour as the season progresses.