How are you commuting to the office these days – if you are? When lockdown and other Covid19 restrictions eased last year and we started creeping back to the office, I began trying to cycle in once a week. I’m not particularly fast but it gives me some exercise, time to think and opportunity to enjoy the sights of London.
That of course was summer time. The sky was blue, the sun was often shining, I was cycling in daylight and I could hear the birds singing (cue the Disney music…)
It has to be said that the appeal of cycling began to decrease rapidly in inverse proportion to the increase in dark, rain, cold, punctures and others’ bike lights so bright that they burn an imprint into your retina like a lightning strike.
As I mentally composed this blog in my head on my commute, I thought I would perhaps start slackening off once frost really settled in, but then Omicron hit and I was back at my home desk anyway without a chance to test my mettle.
And now? On paper, January and February are not the most joyful months of the year. But I look forward to my weekly commute on two wheels. It gives me a burst of energy to start the day, allows me thinking time without getting frustrated by mask-less fellow passengers on the Tube, and provides me with the excuse to eat a huge lunch.
Working in PR, I sometimes feel the urge to shoehorn a communications angle into my blogs, but I’m not sure with cyclists that there’s much to say except ‘mind your language’!
Having said that, the occasional jolly chat while waiting at a red light can be the highlight of your day. And handing back the dropped teddy to a toddler on a child seat at Hyde Park Corner earned me an adorably shy smile.
Other standout moments? The lycra-clad commuting couple traversing Westminster on a tandem. The speedster in Hyde Park blasting techno whose helmet had Viking horns protruding from it. The man on a Brompton bike listening to Stephen Fry reading the audio book of Harry Potter on his speaker. The soldiers (perhaps the Queen’s Guard?) marching along Birdcage Walk with full military band. The gospel choir rehearsing outside Buckingham Palace for some unnamed event. The chance meeting with a colleague as I weaved through log-jammed traffic at Shepherds Bush roundabout – me glowing from the ride and her glowing from the Tube! There’s always something to make me glad I’ve made the effort.