The last decade has been one to forget in many ways. I can remember the optimism after the 2012 Olympics when we punched above our weight, welcomed the world in and showed what a fantastic multi-cultural country we can be. Fast forward to now and we are divided, narrow-minded and blaming “others” for our woes. The state, and the protections it can offer like social care, community and a viable health service, are being systematically dismantled in front of our eyes and the biggest con in history has just been pulled off with staggering success – that Etonian elitists are on the side of the ordinary person is incredible yet millions believed it. Lying is de rigeur and expertise and critical thinking are devalued commodities. Like the roads I cycle on, we’re in a sorry state and getting worse.
Thank goodness for cycling is all I can say. As a way of escaping it has few equals. I’ve long said that compulsory cycling would go a long way towards making the world a better place. The health benefits, the air quality and climate change benefits, the community benefits – they all add up. Not to mention the sheer joy and fun of it. Yes, even in the cold and wet! When cyclists say they suffered on their bikes they mean in a good way!
I’m glad I have this blog because I’d have forgotten the many superb times I’ve had cycling over the last decade and the fantastic friends I’ve made. I’ve had some brilliant adventures and it’s been amazing. I’d have liked to have got to visit more places than Brussels (via France), Lanzarote and the French Alps but maybe next decade! And Britain by bike is pretty good anyway – I’ve ridden from top to bottom, up and down and round and about. We have some beautiful countryside that hasn’t yet been spoiled by impatient motorists – although you have to look hard these days. Anyway, I’ve linked some of my favourite memories below and for those that have been part of them I thank you. Here’s to the next decade – hopefully you will have a great new year and fingers crossed things get better.