Occasionally, I do something of such immense stupidity that I manage to surprise even myself. Yesterday was one of those moments, when a friend of mine casually announced that he was celebrating his birthday on the Isle Of Man this year. Obviously, I jumped at the chance to join him for many reasons, but mainly ‘cos I always enjoy his company, and also it gives me an excuse to visit another mate, Keef, who lives in Ramsey. So far so good. Nothing particularly stupid there.
No. What is stupid is that the reason he’s on the Isle Of Man in the first place is for the end-to-end mountain bike race. And now I find myself the proud owner of an entry for the race myself. This is despite me not owning a mountain bike, nor having ridden off-road in any anger since selling my BMX back in 1985. (I wish I’d kept it now. Last time I saw one of similar spec being sold on eBay it was going for something like 600 quid. I sold mine for something like 15 quid and a pack of Benson and Hedges). Anyway. Back to the plot. So now, what started off as a nice easy weekend with a few mates and several beers and curries in Ramsey has now turned into an exercise of logistics and training as I try to borrow a bike, work out a way to get over there, and learn how to ride it without killing myself or any other competitors. At least I’ll be able to do it on the cheap, as I have floorspace for the weekend at Keef’s place, and will be sharing lifts where possible. I’d hate to pay extortionately for the privilege of hurting myself.
I’ve already had one offer of a bike – but just in case anyone is reading this who can spare a mountain bike for the weekend of 9th Sept, do please get in touch. And Drew, if you fancy building up a one-off Ti mountain bike to the same standard as the delicious road bikes as part of a product development exercise, I’m happy to be beta tester 🙂