The Grand Tour: Fife and Beyond

Ramblings of an inveterate cyclist

The weather today was rather mirksome with the cloud base down to zero once more, but I did want to give my new bike a shack down, so I set out along the cycle track to Guardbridge, giving plenty of opportunities to play with all the buttons and leavers to find out what they all do, before I entered the road system proper. It rode well as a normal bike with very little drag from the motor, which I liked, for I do not intend to use the motor on normal rides or playing around on city streets pedestrian precincts or flat roads. No, I will save the battery for those long rides when legs start to get tired and hill increase in severity as the day wears on.

The trip over to Dundee was pretty painless although this is the main road and very busy, would have been better has I gone via Tayport, but that would have added a good few miles. I stopped on the bridge to take a picture of the rail bridge, but it was almost lost in the mirk so pressed on for the new V&A museum and Discovery, then using the pedestrian crossings to get me into the town centre, so far so good.

The good ship Discovery
The Dundee V&A (It is supposed to look like a sea cliff) Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Then my dilemma, what to do with the bike. There was no way I was going to leave it outside if I entered a shop, other than in full view all the time, maybe best if I taken the bike to the railway station and stored it safely in one of the lockers,

Dundee Railway Station

but I did not have a padlock so that was out. It meant I had to choose my shops carefully. At the big charity shop where I always find a few DVDs, or books, I decided to wheel the bike nonchalantly into the shop. I did get a few strange looks from the staff, but no one suggested I could not bring my bike in. I’m sure when I approached the counter, having selected half a dozen DVDs from their massive collection, they were much happier about this strange lad with a, much smaller in appearance now, bike.

The Caird Hall Dundee.
Oor friends from the Beano.

Went the day well, I tried out all the different selections of assistance, and it certainly did make the pedals light, but again all I did was move up the gears so doing the same work and going faster, then momentum is a good thing on a bike. I liked the safety ideas too, lights and flashing indicators, although they are only safe if you remember to look behind you, before pulling out into the middle of the road, to show your intentions to turn right, even with the indicator flashing, (Life Saver)

“Oops, sorry mate, I didn’t see you”

And again, just before you finally commit. (Life Saver)

I enjoyed my day awheel, and I was please that the weather was much more to my liking.

Warning, now the heavy stuff.

“Freedoms just another word for nothing left to lose, nothing left for me and Bobbie Mc…..” Can someone please explain to me “Freedom Day?”

How stupid are these people running the Westminster government, have they not been paying attention to the figures, deaths in the UK, the worst in Europe, and most of the other nations of the world, and rising? The number of people testing positive with coronavirus rising. The number of people self-isolating (or not) rising. Long covic, that we still do not understand the consequences off, rising. Children unvaccinated, so at risk of getting coronavirus, spreading coronavirus, suffering the long terms effects of long covic. Waiting lists for anything other emergencies stretching to eternity, and beyond, in the NHS.

I asked how stupid are these people…. Well, maybe not so stupid, for a country that is in chaos, will accept changes that they would not accept under normal circumstances. No one was held responsible for the death rate, the trashing of the economy. It was not bad management, not Brexit, no it was coronavirus. We have already seen cuts to foreign aid. Restrictions in pay rise, 1% (now 3%) offered to NHS workers (and Boris rolled out that old dear who gave them a gong) when inflation is at 2.5%, and of course you will be taxed on any increase. And as the waiting time in the NHS for routine operations grows longer, will England accept privatisation, US companies coming in and taking over services? Yes, of course, they will. And what about the other nations of the UK? They will just have to follow suit, for England holds the purse strings. Power devolved is power retained.

The only person in our community here at City Park that has an escape plan is a neighbour with a dual nationality passport, the UK and New Zealand. Me well, I will be keeping my mask on for a long time to come, and trying, to the best of my ability, to dodge the bullets.

Where the world is not on fire, it is being washed away in flash floods. Our seas, rivers and streams are polluted, with chemicals and plastic, to the detriment of us all. But do you hear anyone calling for a ban on plastic, promotional items, cheap plastic toys, plastic carrier bags, plastic packaging….. No, plastic is a money-spinner, and convenient. Its manufacture is also a high polluter, but we must compromise when it comes to company profits.

Global warming, we have known about for years, decades, how far have we travelled it tackling polluting cars, vans, lorries and buses? Manufacturers are always looking into the future and the next new product. Will that product be electric, or possible hydrogen vehicles, (or none) so do we have to wait for the money men to decide where to invest their money before anything is done?

The spokesperson for the WHO came on our screens, at the start of this pandemic and told us, without any ambiguity,

“No one is safe until everyone is safe”

I believe that is the message that should go out to all the people of the world and not only over this pandemic, but plastic pollution, global warming, poverty, illegal immigration, endless wars…….

“There are no problems in this world – only solutions” John Lennon. However the solutions must be global,

“No one is safe until everyone is safe”

Stay safe

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