Thursday, 16 January 2014

A cycling anthem from Morecambe & Wise

There has been so much rain in recent weeks I have been seriously considering turning the bike into an ark and starting to round-up animals, two-by-two.
 
Last weekend though, there was a break in the downpour. Enough blue in the sky, as my mother would have said, to make a sailor's handkerchief. Before Yahoo Weather, before that disappointing app on the iPhone that promises a blazing sun only to deliver rain clouds when opened, before even Michael Fish, we relied upon the sailor's handkerchief to tell us whether to wear shorts or sowester.
 
By 10am the sailor could have had matching underwear and when I started pedalling an hour later, an all-blue wardrobe was his for the taking.
 
Riding with my friend Angie, we cycled out through some of Staffordshire's loveliest villages, climbing on hedge-lined country lanes to hilltops still shining with recent rain. Raindrops hung like diamonds from spiders webs and the skeleton outline of  trees on the winter skyline reached for the first sunshine of the year.
 
The wind was brisk and the bare hedges provided little shelter from a cruel crosswind but it felt so good to be out, for the most part alone on the wet roads. After the dull greyness of the start of the year it felt as though we were discovering new places. "Look at that!" one of us would exclaim, on reaching the top of a hill or rounding a bend. "Aren't we lucky?" Even routes well-travelled felt different when seen in a bright new light.

And look what we found in a village called Croxton. A real windmill house straight out of Camberwick Green! This one didn't seem to be occupied by Windy Miller but I have since discovered that you can get the windmill experience yourself, with holiday accommodation on the top floor:

https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/392202

The windmill was at the top of another of the day's hard (for me) climbs and Angie very kindly pretended to believe that the only reason I wanted to stop at the top was to take this photograph. We both knew that the reality was that it was going to take a few minutes and a banana muffin before we would be able to hear ourselves think above the sound of my gasps for air.

Getting out on the bikes on what proved to be the only dry day before the rains returned sent our spirits soaring. With days so routinely gloomy, a glimpse of the bright skies had topped-up our reserves of happiness and made us feel lucky to be on two wheels. All it takes, as Morecambe and Wise sang on behalf of cyclists everywhere, is a little sunshine. 


Bring me Sunshine, in your smile,
Bring me Laughter, all the while,
In this world where we live, there should be more happiness,
So much joy you can give, to each brand new bright tomorrow,


Make me happy, through the years,
Never bring me, any tears,
Let your arms be as warm as the sun from up above,
Bring me fun, bring me sunshine, bring me love.


Bring me Sunshine, in your eyes,
Bring me rainbows, from the skies,
Life's too short to be spent having anything but fun,
We can be so content, if we gather little sunbeams,
 
Be light-hearted, all day long,
Keep me singing, happy songs,
                                                         Let your arms be as warm as the sun from up above,
                                                         Bring me fun, bring me sunshine, bring me love.

                                                         Words - Sylvia Dee, Music - Arthur Kent
 
 

2 comments:

  1. Reports of the excessive rain there are making the Evening News here. I hope the weather relents for you soon!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Rusty Red, so do I! It's not just the rain and mud that are getting me down, it's the endless gloom. There is so little light, it's like living underground.

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