Wednesday, 11 April 2007


Today a friend took me and my work (and hers) to Saltram, and then dropped me in Plymouth to catch a bus to Saltash to visit a cycle shop. I had pretty well been a life-long cyclist - as a kid my friend and I or my brother and I would go off on cycling adventures. Later I got round London by bike both as a student and as a fledgling graphic designer, and when I left in 1987 to travel the world, I naturally took my bike with me. Or, should I say, my bike took me!

I stopped cycling a few years ago, mostly because of the increased amount of traffic here - both on the A30 which is something of a motorway with only a metre-wide hard shoulder (when you're lucky), and on the roads and lanes north and south. Also because of the A30 limiting east-west travel I had become more a leisure cyclist rather than cycling as a means of transport.

Now, as mentioned in my last log, my means of transport are very limited - no car until November, and only a couple of buses to Launceston on weekdays (shouldn't complain really, it's an improvement from 14 years ago when they went only on Tuesdays, former market day in Launceston!).

I dug Old Faithful out of the shed a week ago and feel really guilty for abandoning the star that had accompanied me across the world all these years. Sadly the framework seems to have started rusting, and I will need a professional opinion on whether to keep her going or... if the time has come for a shiny new one.

I was recommended a wonderful hybrid road/off-road bike... it was really beautiful and seductive. I wanted to try it there and then (but couldn't due to impending bus-catching). But the price! £700! I've no doubt it was worth every penny but I really need to be sure I'd be using it enough to justify such a price. Or might it work the other way round, that owning it would make me use it more?

One reason for wanting to re-locate is to move to somewhere in Cornwall that's both more conducive to cycling and knows the meaning of the concept public transport. But I would like to have the ease still of going for brilliant long walks on the moor (or similar "wild" environment) without having to leap first into a car (or bus/bike). But unless I change my work - what I produce and how it is "disseminated" - I can't see an easy way to get on without a car, in North Cornwall anyway. Pooled car ownership would be ideal, but I'm not aware of anywhere locally that this is happening. Yet.

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