Zephirus with his swete breeth

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by ChrisW, Apr 2, 2003.

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  1. ChrisW

    ChrisW New Member

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    Phew! If Chaucer had made his pilgrimage by bike across the Cambridgeshire fens to Peterborough [1], I reckon he would have been a lot less keen on Zephirus [2] with his swete breeth.

    I've just struggled 11 miles into the teeth of a howling wind. Most of the time I was about three gears off the bottom, making 9mph at a cadence of 80rpm. The trouble with the fens is that the wind is relentless - the only way to get out of it is to lie down in a ditch, of which there is admittedly an ample supply.

    I should have suspected something when I hit 25mph on a flat road going home last night. My bike's called a SpeedMachine, but it doesn't often justify the name when I'm pedalling.

    Chris Walker


    [1] Actually, if Chaucer had tried cycling in the fens in the 14th century, the wind would not have been the only problem. He would also have had to contend with undrained marshes, absence of roads, and complete unavailability of titanium.

    [2] I think Zephirus is just the west wind. Is there a god for west-north-west-by-north? And how do I complain to him? Maybe this is how gods get out of doing anything - Zephirus says "Not my job, mate, try Boreas" and Boreas says "Nah! I only do north winds".
     
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  2. Blimp

    Blimp New Member

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    ChrisW,

    a very eloquent posting and showing a fine knowledge of the art.

    For a real taste of Zephirus, try Broadmarsh in Tasmania on an Autumn day. One needs to keep the brakes on fully to avoid being blown backwards into the wind. On the return trip, speeds of over 200mph are easily achieved.
     
  3. Simon Mason

    Simon Mason Guest

    "ChrisW" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Phew! If Chaucer had made his pilgrimage by bike across the Cambridgeshire fens to Peterborough
    > [1], I reckon he would have been a lot less keen on Zephirus [2] with his swete breeth.
    >
    > I've just struggled 11 miles into the teeth of a howling wind. Most of the time I was about three
    > gears off the bottom, making 9mph at a cadence of 80rpm. The trouble with the fens is that the
    > wind is relentless - the only way to get out of it is to lie down in a ditch, of which there is
    > admittedly an ample supply.

    Yes, my 12 mph ride home yesterday was a real grind into 35 mph gusts at 9 mph riding speed. Same
    again today by the looks of it :-(

    Still, it's a good work out, free of charge and unlike a gym, you've got to do it.
    --
    Simon Mason Anlaby East Yorkshire. 53°44'N 0°26'W http://www.simonmason.karoo.net
     
  4. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Just ridden the Somerset Levels with much the same experience. Nice long, flat roads that I normally
    manage 18-20mph on with ease; I was lucky to get into double figures (9-11 mph) with some gusts
    almost stalling me!

    We have magic wind in Somerset which blows directly at you whatever way you face.

    Kind Regards, Paul
     
  5. Mark

    Mark Guest

    > We have magic wind in Somerset which blows directly at you whatever way you face.

    I hope not - I'm cycling back from work tonight. I live in Somerset, too. I have 30 miles to go and
    it promises to be hard work. Busy roads, too. :-(

    Mark
     
  6. Dave Kahn

    Dave Kahn Guest

    ChrisW <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...

    > [1] Actually, if Chaucer had tried cycling in the fens in the 14th century, the wind would not
    > have been the only problem. He would also have had to contend with undrained marshes, absence
    > of roads, and complete unavailability of titanium.

    And no doubt the odd FWISNY (Forsooth Wight I Sawe Not Ye).

    --
    Dave...
     
  7. On 2 Apr 2003 21:00:14 +0950, ChrisW <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Phew! If Chaucer had made his pilgrimage by bike across the Cambridgeshire fens to Peterborough
    >[1], I reckon he would have been a lot less keen on Zephirus [2] with his swete breeth.
    >
    >I've just struggled 11 miles into the teeth of a howling wind. Most of the time I was about three
    >gears off the bottom, making 9mph at a cadence of 80rpm. The trouble with the fens is that the wind
    >is relentless - the only way to get out of it is to lie down in a ditch, of which there is
    >admittedly an ample supply.
    >
    SNIP

    Didn't John Betjeman (sp?) say of Boston Stump (?) that it was worth cycling 40 miles into a head
    wind to see. It must be bloody good but as Boston is 40 miles from anywhere and the Fens have built
    in headwinds, I am unlikely ever to see it.
     
  8. Nick Kew

    Nick Kew Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, one of infinite monkeys at the keyboard of ChrisW
    <[email protected]> wrote:
    > Phew! If Chaucer had made his pilgrimage by bike across the Cambridgeshire fens to Peterborough
    > [1], I reckon he would have been a lot less keen on Zephirus [2] with his swete breeth.

    I dunno. I pedalled in to Plymouth last night with a fresh but very pleasant crosswind, rising
    briefly to a strong headwind at the top of an exposed hill. Coming home - on the sustained uphill -
    Zephyrus was particularly helpful, probably because I got to breathe fresher air in the
    normally-foul miles of main road through the city.

    --
    Axis of Evil: Whose economy needs ever more wars? Arms Exports $bn: USA 14.2, UK 5.1, vs France 1.5,
    Germany 0.8 (The Economist, July 2002)
     
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