A statistical average. That is my definition of normal. So in that spirit it follows that just about the whole of the world's population can be counted as both normal and not normal, in some way or other.
So too this post. I had promised a return to normality after the Somerset Hills Gran Fondo next Monday, and I plan to proffer a post after that. But time has been charging through the station at too fast a pace to let it go with just a face pressed up against the glass. A few observations are called for. By me.
First, a very big and heartfelt thank you to everyone who has done something for me since my Dad died three weeks ago. We had the cremation on Monday and internment yesterday, and thank you to everyone that came then (although I doubt many if any read this) and thank you for your texts, cards, thoughts, glances, everything.
Thanks to everyone for sponsoring me too. I know you all get the automatic reminder but I like to follow it up with a personalised message, usually. Just at the moment I haven't been able to face doing it, but thank you all the same. Particularly to Martyn, Jennifer and Jon (my American cousin) who made particularly special efforts.
Some things get repeated so often they become cliches. Doesn't matter anymore. It really is about people. It's all about people. You may know this, really know this, or pay lip service to this. But one day you will feel it as viscerally as I do at the moment. So we are all going to treasure every moment, and treasure every person in our lives. And anyone who comes into it. Well I'm going to do my best.
Just as the day of my Mum's funeral seemed to be the last sunny day of last Summer, so my Dad's was the first warm day of this Spring. What a long, horrible Winter. But it's over now.
Here are a few pictures from Sunday's ACG ride, great having new folk along, the first of many I hope, as well as a couple of returning lost sheep. We hope to keep doing lots of different types of ride, with the emphasis on G for Group, getting more people involved, by the way young maxiMe is growing he will soon be kicking ass of his elders every time.
Just about everyone I know persuaded me to take Tuesday off work, and I'll give it to them, they were right. But I couldn't just sit about, so decided to go for a hard ride on my own. The sun was shining, and despite the cold northerly wind, I decided it was time for shorts. Well, there was to be over 4000 feet of climbing. And suncream, sunny remember?
Time for A pair of trousers. You will need to look at the link to work out why it's called that, but thanks to Figgy we now have our very own ACG challenge on our doorstep. I have no doubt that someone, everyone, can ride it quicker than this, but I was the first! It's been a while since I went up past the glider club on a bike, and I'd forgotten how hard and steep it is. The consolation being it makes Deerleap seem an awful lot easier by comparison.
Not forgetting I had to ride up there in the first place, I will frown on anyone that drives up there to do it, it's only about 19 miles after all. And ride back of course, although that was fun.
And some photographic evidence I think is always called for.
So I'm back on the commuting run tomorrow, and all kitted out with some Summer high viz kit, can't wait. Then into two months of mental sportive participation, five long hard hilly days for May, and four in June, then it's off to France for the Tour, although I am taking a rain check on the Devil's Pitchfork after my Doctor's appointment today.
See you on the road.