Off out out again. Carsick Lane. New gravel (to me) of Coppice Road, heaving with folks. Up to Nethergate and along to Long Lane which is longer than its name suggests. Bloody hot. A spot of tractor tryre rut mayhem to Moscar Cross. Sugworth Road to the hold-on-tight of the Blindside Lane descent to Annet Bridge. And then the climb. To Strines. The whoop of the descent replaced by the drip drip drip of sweat on to my top tube bag. The Strines peacocks are still loud. Flatter. Hotter. Curlews. A man not on an electric bike shouts and swears that the man that just went past me ‘was f’ing cheating … he’s got batteries’. He looks proper put out by it !! I roll to the A57. Freewheel most of the way to Bamford. The sun glints off the reservoir. Three million people less than there would normally be here on a day like this. And so the climb up New Road begins. Skylarks lark. This climb is never easy. But wait, what the absolute fuck is that at the brow of the climb …. a man in a t-shirt and a scarf stands in the middle of the road teaching golf swing to a woman in knee length leather boots and a trench coat. I rub my eyes. He’s holding her back straight. ‘Hiya’ he says. Next to them a bloke stood at the side door if his camper, and dressed head to foot in La Sportiva sees me and slides his chalkbag in to his hoody like a shoplifter nicking stuff. Casually scratches his head. Climbing ? Me ? No !! The descents start. The evening sun kisses Stanage. The same campervans along the road. Up to Hook’s Car carpark. WTAF Part 2. A white Mercedes with 4 in it parks across the road blocking it. I’m coming up the hill. There are 3 cyclists coming down. The doors open. Three males get out jump up on to the wall and piss in to the evening breeze. We cyclists try to keep 2m apart from each other and a long way from the pissing display team. On. That hill. A photo from near the County boundary back across Stanage and the setting sun. Windproof and cap on. That downhill. I hit 56.3kmph. In to the village. As i pedal through the gap between parked cars a car drives straight at me blinded by the sun. Driver saluting and squinting. Up the curb i go. Lanes. Home. Shower. Food.

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