Cycling this month
Cycling Statistics this month
This month was one of my highest distance months ever ridden:
And here is where I went – from the Netherlands to Poland and back via Berlin.
This is of course my tour Kempen-Usedom-Berlin-Kempen, for which I wrote a blog post every day. If you haven’t seen it then you can read the tour reports here.
Apart from this most of my rides were commutes.
Helen’s birthday ride
However, the day after we returned from our long bike tour was my birthday. So how should I celebrate it but a cycle ride!
Unfortunately Klaus had to drive to Berlin that day for a work conference so he was unable to ride with us – instead he arranged to meet us at the café and drive straight on to Berlin from there.
I had invited various friends and a plan was hatched to meet in Straelen. My host family Gudula, Frank, Nils and Lara would meet us there, along with the new family member Rohallah, a refugee who is now living with us. This was because Rohallah wasn’t keen on cycling the 60km round trip, having only a few weeks ago received his own bicycle. Plus it was Ramadan so he was fasting so a long ride on a very hot day was not such a good idea.
Anyway, Jochen came round to my house and he and I cycled together to Straelen where we met Uli who had ridden straight there.
Due to various elements of disorganisation we didn’t actually leave Straelen until 45 minutes after the scheduled leaving time, partly because of a flat tyre on Gudula’s bike too, so that Klaus arrived alone at the café and sat Billy-No-Mates on a table set for 10. But eventually we got there, having cycled on a very hot day. Well, not all of us had cycled – Lara and Nils were on their inline skates, so the 16km to the café was a fair distance.
We sat on the long table and ordered our cakes/drinks.
And there were some very nice cakes!
As my second slice of cake I decided to go for a pancake.
Gudula, Lara, Nils and Rohallah played mini golf but the rest of us sheltered from the heat under the umbrella and enjoyed our drinks. We were at Café zum Schafstall which I have visited a few times before and which I really like. It’s in the middle of nowhere though so it would be vastly unlikely for someone to stumble upon it by accident (although that is in fact what Klaus and I once did, but we were on a ride to NL).
Klaus headed off to Berlin and then Uli had to leave. After a very pleasant 3 hours at the café it was time to ride back to Straelen.
When we got to Straelen it seemed like a good idea to have some ice cream.
Our velomobiles were causing great interest. Nils had left his skates in front of them too – his feet were rather hurting!
Jochen had to go off somewhere else for a barbecue so I ended up riding home on my own. I really pushed, feeling very fit after my tour and well-fuelled with cake, and managed a 35.9km/h average for the ride home which felt good.
I enjoyed my birthday very much and it was good to share the day with friends and my German ‘family’ here too.
After Klaus returned from Berlin we gave the velomobiles a good clean and service.
The really good news is that my new back wheel performed really well on the tour and has made a huge improvement in terms of noise (the freehub in the old wheel was super-noisy when freewheeling). I did discover the rear wheel was slightly loose one day – Millie felt a bit funny when pulling away from a standstill – but I tightened it up and all was well again. I will have to watch that as a loose rear wheel is sub-optimal.
Klaus and I decided to go out for breakfast cake the Sunday after my birthday. But we have made a new agreement that we are only allowed cake if we cycle more than 50km, so we had to take quite a detour home after eating this at 17km…
Life in Germany
This month was super-busy at work following my two week break as the customer I look after has hugely increased the amount of items they produce with us. The new contract of course started on the first day of my holiday so my colleagues had to take care of everything; it will take me a couple more weeks to get on top of it all.
Into all the business was added the bonus that I moved office into the new part of our building. This is very nice and an open office, sharing with a colleague instead of being on my own but in a much airier and more spacious room. I also have a view of everyone coming and going and there is a special parking place for Millie out the front.
Not only did I move office on 30 June but it was also another important moving day – it was the day that Klaus moved in with me. He handed back the keys to his flat and is now making his home with Poppy and me. He and Poppy have already bonded very well!
This is a shorter blog post due to half the month already having been written about in detail! More next month…