Monday, 23 November 2009

Moving on, moving up - Check your bookmarks!

Very soon, this blog will be moving... I've decided to move it to a WordPress platform and most of the work is now done.


1. Please change your bookmark if you have one, to - you won't notice any difference straight away but that will make sure you don't miss out once I move everything.

2. If you use Google Reader (as I do), go to the new pre-launch site and subscribe to the RSS feed from the big logo in the header.  You can't miss it.

3. Join Me! I've put a Google Friend Connect box on the new site, so please rejoin the blog there.

If you're here and it's past mid-December 2009, please hit this link right here.

I hope to continue the rambling, random and nonsensical nature of The Blind Leading The Blinds in future, but I feel that the Wordpress platform will make things better in many ways going forwards.

Hope to see you there!  Tell me Phill sent you!

Friday, 6 November 2009

Oooooh! Aaaaaaah!

It's not what you think!

Remember, remember, last night was Bonfire Night. The night in which we celebrate the possibly misguided life of a Roman Catholic who found himself hung, drawn and 'cut into four pieces' (as my daughter so nicely put it) for giving up on demoracy.

But, historical justification forgotten, it's actually the night we just have a bit of fun, burn effigies and set off fireworks.

Rochdale hasn't held an organised firework display in the town centre for a couple of years, but this year they've got some money left over as every junction in the Borough already has a mini-roundabout. So, they spent it on fireworks, Hurrah!

I hope you like the photos....

That's all folks, that really is it for today. Sorry Gaz, no bike again!

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Mark Cavendish Book Review

Boy Racer: Mark Cavendish

In my haul of 40th birthday presents, I got some books as I usually do. One of them was "Boy Racer - My journey to Tour de France record-breaker" by Mark Cavendish.

Mark Cavendish is officially Britain's most successful Tour de France cyclist. His 4 stage wins in 2008 and 9 wins in 2009 have singled him out as an exceptional athlete, particularly as he does not possess the type of body-shape so typical of the lycra-clad sportsmen we see on the telly.

I wasn't sure how much I'd enjoy this book. I really enjoyed the TdF coverage on the TV this year and I was amazed by this scally's performances on the bike. I felt almost as if he was flying the flag for short blokes everywhere!

Like most cyclists, I've read the Lance Armstrong books and feared that this missive could be more of the same. Lance is a fantastic writer, so inspirational, but there's only room for one cyclist writing that sort of book.

I'm glad to say I was wrong. Mark Cavendish's book is different: honest; bolshy; in-your-face; heartwarming and in places upsetting. And there's loads of good information about competitive cycling and Le Tour.

I would recommend any cyclist to buy this book. In fact I would recommend anyone who's ever been involved in competition to buy this book.

Tell 'em Phill sent ya!

Saturday, 31 October 2009

At last - a decent day's cycling.

Ten Mile Loop - A Day To Myself

Today was a very rare day: one for which I was home alone. Work and holidays had happily conspired to give me a little me time.

So, I found the shed key and set off on an unplanned bike ride. I'd awoken to blue skies but by 11.30 the clouds were rolling in and looking pretty gloomy, so I figured I'd better stay close to home in case I ended up getting my shower before getting home!

First Job ...

Before I set off, my first job was to fit my new torch. To be honest, the simple bracket was incredibly easy to fit and not worth worrying about. It took about 2 minutes, resulting in the busiest cockpit in the Western hemisphere:

I set off through Milnrow first of all, going a little further than needed to avoid the steep climb that is Kiln Lane. A much easier uphill jaunt through Milnrow's residential back streets brought me to Wildhouse Lane which was much easier to ride towards Hollingworth Lake than it is coming the other way: the prevailing wind was behind me, woohoo!

On reaching Hollingworth Lake I treated myself to this:

A luvverly cuppa and a luvverly view!

Then it was a clockwise loop around the Lake (with another cuppa and a butty halfway round. I remembered I hadn't eaten since last night's trip to Milnrow Balti House and nobody wants a muddy collpased diabetic on their hands on a weekend stroll out!). I unwisely went for the fat and tomato option:

Stomach full, I finished the lake loop then headed to Littleborough via the main road, as far as Smithy Bridge Road then downhill to the rail station and back on the canal before heading home. It was a lovely ride and the rain held off for long enough to let me relax in the back garden, have a drink and admire my clean dirt from the jaunt:

The ride's on MapMyRide if you fancy a more in-depth look. Tell 'em Phill sent ya!