Monthly Archives: January 2006

Tips for De-icing Bikes and riding in the frosty weather

After cycling to work every day for the past few weeks, I am now an expert in this field, so decided to share some of the knowledge I have aquired along the way. The neccessary items as listed below can be bought from most good outdoor/bike shops.

You will need:
* 1 bike
* 1 towel
* 1 windproof, warm coat
* 1 pair of windproof gloves
* 1 pair of normal gloves (if very cold)
* 1 fleecy headband
* 1 cylce helmet
* 1 pair of long rainbow coloured socks (well, i suppose they don’t have to be rainbow coloured, but it is preferable)
* warm clothes generally
* 2 lights, if cycling in the dark – one white and one red.

1. Take the bike, from where ever it has been overnight (in my case, our balcony) and use the towel to brush off any ice or frost that is on the seat or on the handle bars.
2. Wrap yourself up – ensure you are wearing the warm clothes, put on the windproof coat and gloves (if its very cold, put another pair of gloves on under the windproof pair, but ensure that movement to the fingers can still be maintained, otherwise braking might be interesting).
3. Put the fleecy headband over your head – ensuring it covers up your ears, and then put the cycle helmet over the top.
4. Secure the lights on the front (white) and the back (red) of the bike.
5. Now, you’re ready to go. Cycle carefully, especially if there is ice on the roads. As the cold wind rushes past you, make a mental note of cold parts of your body, and try to wrap that area up better the following day.
6. When you arrive at you’re destination, secure your bike however appropriate, and remove the cycle helmet and excess clothing – I can guarrentee your cheeks will be red and you will need to allow your body to cool off after the energetic ride.
Good luck!

Photos from Pembrokeshire

I love this photo – it really is an amazing view across the bay. The landscape reminded me a lot of Cornwall.
Amazing view of the bay

This was taken from our lunch spot, just before I went paddling in the sea with other crazy friends. And yes, it was freezing, but it was quite cool to be able to have a picnic and go in the sea in January.
The Beach

Those people, leaning over the edge of the cliff, are my crazy friends! Erm, yeah. I know many people who suffer from vertigo (including my Mum), who would NEVER put themselves in that position. Just for reference, the cliff did go down much further than is visable in the photo – i couldn’t fit it all in!
Crazy people!

I’m fine, honestly

I’ve been thinking too much today. I went hiking, and although (as usual) I spent a lot of time chatting to my friends, I also spent quite a lot of time thinking. I kept telling myself that I was fine. That everything was fine. But the fact that I had to keep telling myself that I was fine, makes me suspicious about whether I am. I want everything to fine. I think its fine.

But if, deep down, I really am not fine, then I do need to admit this to myself. Because it will come out in the future, especially if I carry out my current plans for next year. I think its just weird. And I’m hoping that I will get used to the weirdness, or it will become less weird in time anyway. Sigh. I just don’t know anymore.

On a lighter note, the hike was great. We went to Pembrokeshire and walked 9 miles along the coast. The weather was amazing and some pictures will probably follow.

WOW!!!!!! WOW!!! LOTS AND LOTS OF WOW!!!!!!!!

Wow!!!! Just lots of wow!!!! (In case you haven’t gathered yet… just a little excited!) Via the hiking club message board, I have just discovered the wonders of Google Earth!!!! Its FREE to download and its basically a statelite image of the WHOLE WORLD, which you can zoom right into. I’ve just downloaded it, and I can zoom in, from looking at an image of the whole world, into looking at MY HOUSE’S roof top!!! You can zoom in so much, that you can clearly see people’s washing lines! It is SO cool! I’m going to have lots of fun playing with this! 😀

Always expect the unexpected

Thats one of my favourite sayings. But it was definately refreshed to me today. Yesterday, when I was expecting the responsibility, it never happened. Today, I wasn’t expecting it, and it did happen. Well, to an extent. We had an exciting/scary emergency situation. But, I was quite proud – i kept my cool, and did everything that needed to be done, without panicking. My insides were majorly excited and jumping around all over, but I think i remained calm on the outside and acted quickly and efficiently.

God’s like that. He always acts in suprising, unexpected ways. When I was doing my confirmation lessons with a minister from home, she asked me to write a list of words that described Jesus. The word at the top of my list was ‘surprising’. The minister was quite surprised that it had been the first thing that I thought of. But, from a young age, i could never understand why Jesus’ followers were still surprised, after 3 years of Him doing surprising things? Why were they still surprised by them. Why didn’t they expect them? I suppose its easy for me to say that now, with hindsight. For example, I’ve always known that Jesus rose again on the third day, but if I had been there when it happened, then I wouldn’t have expected it. The minister fully agreed with me, that Jesus always acts in unexpected ways. And she recommended to ‘Always Expect the Unexpected’, with God, life, everything. Its good advice.

Tripped over

When I was in year 8, we went on a residential trip to the Peak District. One evening, a group of us went for a walk up a nearby hill. On the way down, a friend of mine, decided to run down – rather fast. On the way down, she tripped over a stone and banged her head on another stone. She was unconscious for a few seconds, and when she came round she didn’t have a clue where she was. She teachers took her to the nearest hospital and she was fine, but still to this day she can’t remember what happened before the accident.

I feel a little like that now. I feel like I was enjoying a gentle slope down hill. I was building up speed, possibly running slowly. When I tripped up on a stone. And landed flat on my face. I just got carried away. Said some stuff I shouldn’t have done. Splat.

But don’t worry. I’m ok. I got up pretty quickly – certainly didn’t go unconscious. Theres a few bruises, but nothing that won’t sort its self out. I suppose the worst bit is, that unlike my friend, i can remember the events before the accident.


Responsibility is a funny thing. It can be good, because when you’re given it, it must mean you can be trusted and if you can cope with the responsibility it boosts your confidence. But, if you are given too much responsibility, or can’t cope with it, then its very scary. You end up out of your depth You end up feeling like you’re hopeless.

There have been numerous occasions on placement when I have been placed with significant responsibility. It is one of the best ways to learn. Dispite being scary at the time, after I’ve gone through the experience I feel proud – as long as it didn’t go terribly wrong. Today, just as I was leaving, I was informed of the HUGE responsibility I will be entrusted with tommorrow. Its scary. And I don’t know how well its going to go. I was told not to worry, if anything happens that you’re unsure about, just ring for an ambulance. ARGH!

Wish me luck for tommorrow. I will let you know how it goes.

More cool Photos

Yesterday I went hiking with the Hiking Club, which gave me another opportunity to experiment with my new camera. It was a really nice day and we were lucky enough to see an amazing sunset. And after a the positive response I had last time I shared photos of amazing views, I thought I’d share some of the ones from yesterday.

Three Cliffs Bay:
From Pennard across Three Cliffs Bay Three Cliffs

A pony with Oxwich bay in the background:
A pony with oxwich bay in the background

An amazing view of Worms Head:
Worms Head

And two amazing photos of the gorgeous sunset:
Wow!  An amazing sunset! Sunset

Photos from Saturday night

Well done Wood for getting it right – it was indeed ee.
Below are some of the other photos I took on Saturday night at Sarah’s birthday party. People shown in the photos include Burnt Sienna, ee, Blonde, Miss Guided and of course, Ramblin’ Folkie.

Sarah's birthday Nessa and Jacqui

The photo on the right here definately needs a funny caption. What are they saying to each other?!
Ian, Sarah and Alice Caption needed?!

Mike on his guitar playing Kate Rusby
At the end of the evening, Mike very kindly got his guitar out and we sang lots of cool songs, by artists such as Kate Rusby and Simon and Garfunkel.