Helen Findlay

My adventures in Middle Europe and The Colonies. This blog contains my own views and opinions and does not represent those of my employers, or any other organisation with which I am involved. Remember, just because it isn't Singletrackworld, doesn't mean it isn't shite !

Monday, June 20, 2005

Scottish National Duathlon Champs 18th June

A couple of months ago, my friend Kim emailed me: "theres a duathlon around Arthurs Seat in Edinburgh, you do a bit of running, do you fancy doing it ?" Well I can say now with considerable authority, there is quite a difference between doing a bit of running and taking part in a running race. And I am deeply suspicious that she only wanted me along so there would be somebody she could beat (sorry Kim - just joking - honest).

Decided my best approach to avoid humiliation was to dress as obviously like a cyclist as possible, and wear some very dark sunglasses. And ask lots of really really really stupid questions at the registration. Sample: "why are you writing a number on me, will it wash off in the shower tonight, where do I pin my number, can I draft off the other cyclists" etc etc.

Luckily it was a lovely warm day without too much wind, so it was nice to be out and about. The first run section was hell - I lost about 5 mins from the front of the race over 5k. Did better on the bike section and passed 4 girls (and quite a few blokes) but it was too short to make up for my rubbish running. The second run of another 5k didn't hurt so much, but I looked over my shoulder in the last 200 metres and was getting caught by a lassie I had passed on the bike, so had to sprint for the finish. That hurt rather a lot !!

In the end my mate Kim came 5th, and I came 8th in a field of about 15, and we had a good time, laughing at the weird triathlete types (just pick a sport guys - and preferably one that doesn't involve running in grut togs). It's two days later and I still can't walk properly. Never again !! Might just leave running for fun from now...

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Scottish Summer arrives at last....

It's 2pm in the afternoon and I am making the most of the Scottish summer. That is, sitting in the house waiting for it to stop raining so I can go out on my bike.

I have created this blog to keep in touch with friends and family in New Zealand, and to report back on my adventures in Europe this summer.

First trip scheduled is Italy 30th June - 10th July, to take part in the Marathona dles Dolomites, a 90 mile hilly road race over some of the climbs used in the Giro.

I finish work on 19th July (yippee !!) and will be heading down to Engerland for a week or so, then back up to Scotland to hand my flat over to my American tenant Robin for the Fringe Festival.

Back down to Engerland 1st August, then across to Belguim, Germany, Switzerland visiting friends on the way, and setting up camp in Morzine for a few weeks. Back to Italy, for the MTB World Champs in Livigno first weekend in September, then a dash across Europe to end up in Fort William, Scotland by 10th September.

(then I guess I had better start looking for a job, mebbe)

I will post diary entries along the way, please feel free to add any comments if you have something interesting to say. All I would ask is that you remember that my mother might be reading them !

New Zealand seems to be coming up on the television a fair bit at the moment, partly due to the Lions Tour I guess. There is a programme on tonight about Gangs, the first episode featuring the Mongrel Mob, and advertised with pictures of some guys with Porirua patches. Ah, so nice to be reminded of home ! Will tape it and send to NZ if its any good.