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Stupidly, despite waking up early, I set off late to Herford with Brunhilde. I have no bloody idea why, but I allowed myself just enough time to get to Spoons given my pace.

Well, it was a lovely morning. As usual I saw the mating swans and geese, the nesting moorhens, some sheep, some cows a lot of effing phone zombies and madcap doggos off lead.

Just outside Ware, I caught up with some big boys on posh Carrera bikes and all the cycling gear, shorts, jerseys, helmets, shoes and backpacks. Me in holey M&S jogging bottoms, no helmet, a charity shop fleece and Shaun the Sheep. With tap water in an ancient plastic bottle that I use for gym. I ask if I can tag on. They look at Brunhilde and say they aren't going to slow down. I explain with no gears and not a lot in the way of brakes, it's not likely I will either, and they think it's funny. I pedal on. And keep up, easily.

About a mile out of Hertford, I look at my phone and see its 11.51. Spoons stop serving breakfast at 12.00. No chance to be polite now, it's crucial. I do what I've seen top riders do and holler "COMING THROUGH" and accelerate past the poshos, pedalling like hell. I would like to tell you that I was off the saddle , leaning forward etc, but in truth, I was just pedalling like billy-o. No idea what's on the lunch menu.

Cycle into the beer garden at the back and jump off at the back doors and push the bike to the bar. 12.02. Disaster. But pity is taken! Sausage, egg, bacon n beanz (low carb) and 3 coffees later, I have a stroll round Hertford.

Leave Hertford in a terrible headwind, and it's suddenly dropped to 4 degrees! Absolutely freezing. Thankfully the sun put his hat on half an hour later.

Just before The Crown, I was actually hit by a duck, low flying under the bridge. Pretty hard. But I managed not to come off, and we both survived.

Got home, and decided to crack on with the housework before I collapsed. Good choice! Polished, vacuumed, even washed the nets.

Had an unexpected but very welcome visitor.

Gifted an amazing piece of art. Totally doesn't go with the house. Love it so much I'll find a way :)


Call me Madam

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