A record of my cycling trips in Britain and abroad


Big Swim Day

Today is my big swim day - swimming home from work! Sponsor me here if you’d like to, for Amnesty International:
https://wonderful.or … onsoredswim-99f53f29

In other news, my new blog seems to work well with email posts. I prefer this one, but the other gives me more options. Let me know which you like best :)


Aidan Rides

I in a week or so, I’m heading to Canada for a conference, and hopefully a bit of sightseeing too. I’m not sure quite how good the internet access will be over there, and I’d like to keep up to date more with blogging; so I’ve decided to create an additional site on wordpress, so that I can post by email. This will remain my main site, and in time hopefully I’ll add the same functionality here, but because of the way my site is designed it would be a fair bit of work for me to make my site work like that. In the meantime, so that it’s ready in time for Canada, I’ve taken the shortcut of having someone else do the programming and web hosting, and my wordpress site is here: Wordpress partially fund their service through advertising, so the pages I post from that link will have some adverts on - sorry about that! I hope you don’t mind them too much. Please feel free to avoid that site; if the adverts bug you, let me know, and I’ll hurry up with getting the email-to-post feature working with this site :)


4.2 K run

Just a short race I did in Scotland last week, at a conference in Glasgow. It was the morning after a whisky tasting session… I wonder how much effect that had on participant numbers! (Not whiskey, as I was reminded - maybe that’s because I’ve spent too much time in Ireland!)

In case you’re wondering why this race was 4.2 km (it’s an obscure reason, so you might well be): 4.2 Kelvin (4.2 K) is the boiling point of liquid helium. Until recently, almost all superconductors have used liquid helium as the coolant, in order to reach the temperatures at which they operate. Having a 4.2 km race is, apparently, a tradition at this applied superconductivity conference. That’s definitely a geeky physicists in-joke… Still, it was fitting I suppose in Glasgow, seeing as we ran the race in Kelvin park, not far from the statue of William Thomson (aka Lord Kelvin).
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Thames Path

Oo, 6 m elevation gain, apparently, on this morning’s run - I think that’s still an overestimate! It was a lovely morning for it - a perfect temperature, completely still, with the morning sun poking above the trees, and the water vapour rising from the river. The only blot on the horizon was the towers of Didcot Power Station, rising like Blake’s Dark Satanic Mills and visible from all around.

I wonder how far along the river the path goes - quite a way I imagine. I’ve cycled along it, but the cycle path takes a different route at that point, on the other side of the river. As I was wondering how far it goes, I was reminded of a tale from a few years ago, of a man called Robert Young, who set out to break the record for running across America; except he spent half of it travelling in his support vehicle. I wonder why someone would do that… for money, I suppose. The current record (by Pete Kostelnick) stands at 43 days. I doubt I’ll ever run that far, but It’ll be fun to explore this footpath some more!


An evening swim

Quite the flurry of blog posts today! There must be something wrong with me :o

Just to say, I had a lovely swim this evening in the Thames. I wish I’d had someone to share it with! The water seemed much clearer than the other times I’ve been in (as in, I could see my hands in front of me. Don’t get overexcited, I still couldn’t see the bottom even though I could stand up. And I know I’m not that tall, no need to remind me…). However - and I blame one of my friends for this, after a conversation about ‘the itch’ in a lake she swims in - I feel very itchy! I don’t know if it’s purely psychological ; I feel like it must be, since I was fine the other times I’ve swum here, and the water was so much clearer this time. And I showered straight afterwards. Oh well; if it happens next time I’ll be most miffed, I was starting to like that swimming spot!

I also saw a narrowboat for sale. Can you see me living on a boat, I wonder?