Making good use of the fair weather today, I decided to ride the seaside route to work. Once I was onto the promenade at Sandbanks, heading east towards Christchurch, there was almost total silence, save for the rumble of my tyres on the tarmac and the waves lapping gently on the almost deserted beach.
The cold air did a great job of purging any last traces of sleep from my person and in fact, compared to the last few weeks, it was decidedly chilly. Coupled with the effect of morning mist, my arms started to get really cold and wet, and I was beginning to wish I had put a long-sleeved top on.
I knew that a little more effort would speed me towards my destination as well as generating the heat required to thaw my frozen limbs, and so it proved. After just a few minutes hard pedalling I was feeling pretty toasty and was whizzing down the promenade at a healthy 30kph.
Now I know that some people seem to think that I am a bit crazy, cycling over 30km to get to work, but it really does have benefits. At current petrol prices, it saves me about £8 a day in fuel, it helps keep me physically fit, it makes me wide awake and alert, ready for work, and I get to see some amazing sights that others often miss. I also get time to think, in perfect solitude. There are very few others mad enough to be up at this time of day.
This morning, my timing was such, that as the first rays of the rising sun popped over the horizon, they fell directly behind the skeletal structure of Bournemouth Pier. Now the pier itself is no Victorian masterpiece, and the funfair that perches precariously at the far end is no oil painting, but in silhouette against the rising sun it made for an amazing sight.
With the return journey promising to offer similar views of the sunset, and with the weekend just around the corner, I’m looking forward to my ride back to Poole. The weathermen have promised that we will have a little more of this amazing summer during the next few days. I hope you can make the most of our good fortune, I know what I’ll be up to.