Sunday, 23 September 2012

Ferry Sweet Ride

After my successful and slightly tough hilly bike ride last Sunday with the Breeze ladies I signed up once again to go with the same group up to 'Breeze in the Park' at Victoria Park in London. I met with Jill and Collette at Danson park and we chatted as we waited for some others who did not show (naughty first timers) and off we went on our merry way. It was a cool morning and overcast, we knew the rain was coming but we didn't know when it would arrive. 
As we arrived in Woolwich (descending a very steep hill which I knew would be back to slap us in the face later)  we ventured down some dodgy looking roads and found the secret entrance to the Woolwich foot tunnel. Unlike Greenwich there is no lift but also no tourists so we lugged our bikes down the 124 step winding staircase. We followed most instructions on the sign at the entrance... no spitting, no shouting, no animal fouling but as the tunnel was empty we hopped on peddles and scooted through. The other end was a bit tougher and I was sent first with my bike up the winding and seemingly never ending staircase. We emerged like moles squinting and puffing but that was the tough bit done!
The journey continued and we cycled along the Thames path - stopping briefly to watch the cyclist of the London Triathlon - until we reached Victoria Park and met up with the other Breeze ladies, we were given cakes, sweets, croissants and hot drinks and chatted to some of the others. As we prepared to head back the rain arrived as did 4 young scallys to see what they could get from the tent - we hung around looking disapprovingly as they received a water bottle, apple juice and lots of sweets, stickers and goodness knows what else until finally the leader of the pack stated 'come on lads I think we're taking the pi$s now' - we heartily agreed and they were sent packing with their haul.
All aboard for sweet tea
Happy that the danger of young boys had left we did a lap around the park and started back along the route we had come. We passed the cyclists of the London Triathlon once again and this time went to the Woolwich Ferry. Sadly we had just missed one and were forced to stand cold and wet waiting on the windy dock. Finally the ferry arrived and we were ushered on, before long one of the ferry worker appears with a cuppa, we made a little joke about where was ours, which happily resulted in me getting his cuppa, it had sugar in it but as this point the old classic 'I'm sweet enough already' may have deterred him from giving me that sweet hot beverage. With my numb hands and cold core this was not something I was going to risk. So, yes I was told 'never to take sweeties from strangers' but not specifically 'never to take Sweet Tea from strangers' so I made an exception! I was after all, cold, wet and really wanted a cup of tea - sugar or no sugar.
We departed the ferry, somewhat warmer and ready to tackle the uber hill that awaited us... I made it all the way to the top, I used pretty much all the gears and my thighs were burning but I did it. maybe the sweet tea helped?
By this point although warmed up the rain was beginning to feel relentless and I could only focus on getting home and into a hot bath. I left the others at our meeting point and continued the final 5 miles alone. Finally back and warmed up I was in good spirits.

1 comment:

  1. Liz, I really enjoyed this post. It sounds like an epic adventure!