Saturday, 6 January – Wilmslow Circular

Since Monday, rain has fallen almost continuously, so today the roads are one huge puddle.  We started at 1.45pm, but on reaching the bottom of Green Lane my pal’s chain broke.  I had to go back half a mile for a new bolt.  At Barton we lingered on the bridge, feeling somewhat out of form.  This was followed by a terribly slushy run across Trafford Park which brought us to a restaurant where we spent an hour.  Then we awoke (!) and heading through Salford we came to the White City, and thus on to Altrincham road.  At Sale, (we were now lit up) there are large tracts of land around the Mersey river which are flooded, and the roads aren’t much better.  My gas lamp was smelly, and after a while I located a leak in the burner.  After some difficulty I got a new one, and all was merry and bright.

From Timperley, we struck for Ringway, and after filling ourselves and bikes with a very oozy mud and getting lost several times, we reached that elusive village.  A monotonous road with a dangerous hill took us at length to Wilmslow Common, from where we had an oozy voyage to my pal’s fiancée’s house.  Two hours later, at 8.30pm, we wheeled off.  Three quarters of an hour saw us in Stretford, and at Worsley my lamp began to flicker.  It was after 10pm, and I had no carbide, so the only thing was to hurry on.  As my pal was not in the best of health, he was feeling done, and though it is against my principles, I had to leave him, or walk home.  I took a short cut, and after a very watery and skidding adventure, I arrived home a heap of dirt at 10.20pm.

52 miles, 8.5 hours