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Cold Start, Bright Finish 19/04/2023

As I rode up the Flitch Way to join the Easy Riders, I decided my health & safety tip for the day would be to keep your helmet cover in a pocket or bar bag, so that if spring weather turned cold, riders would not get an unexpectedly cold head. This made me feel somewhat smug, as I pedalled up the track, all warm and cosy on a cold morning. However, when the weather promptly turned bright, sunny and hot, I felt somewhat less smug as I realised, I had completely forgotten my sunglasses and visor! Twit!! So, health & safety tip for the day, is to take all your small bits of sunny/cold kit on your bike ride when riding in springtime!

There seemed plenty of riders (13?) for the long ride led by Gifford and Andy P, as they cheerfully departed at 0930, heading to Braxted Bakery. The medium ride had some hasty lead replacements as there were a plethora of reasons why all the nominated medium ride leaders were unavailable. Steve B came up with a figure-of-8 route and Mike, Julie G and I took up various ride roles to head to Owls Tearoom in Terling.

Just as we departed, a new rider, Collette, turned up to join us. Welcome Collette! She joined the short ride, and from the details I heard from conversations with the short ride, she has worked/is working in nursing and train driving. A fellow from the railway industry – how good is that!

Having arrived at Owls Tearoom, I had a trip down memory lane. One of my Mum’s favourite cakes was a London Cheesecake, just called cheesecake in the 1950s/60s. It was on the menu, so Paul S and I just had to try it. Oh, my word! It took me back! A leaden slab of flaky(ish) pastry, a lava-flow of incredibly sweet icing, and shredded coconut. Not to be missed … and never to be repeated! Give me a bacon sandwich any day! As a child, I must have had the digestive system of a bin-lorry!

As the morning heated up, we pedalled back to Braintree, where some of us regrouped for a meeting about the BER holiday in May. Because many ride leaders are away 8-12 May, please note there is no medium ride on 8 May, and riders will need to join either the long or short rides instead.

22 miles, 8.8mph.

Cathy MacTaggart


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