We have now moved into our tenth home, far from the Thames Valley, near the Northumberland coast.
Choosing where to live has always been a big decision, and usually involves some compromises, but this time we haven't been as constrained by work and family commitments as we have in the past. With more options, and without others forcing some of the decisions, we have had to make up our own minds about what is important to us. Obviously the promise of some decent cycling featured somewhere in the list, but there were a lot of other things to consider too. So we've taken our time coming to a decision, and over time we have built up some high expectations.
So far, a week after we moved, things seem to be working out. We are gradually getting stuff sorted. My bike was the first thing to come off the removal van, but on balance it didn't seem the best idea to ride off immediately. In any case, it has taken longer to discover the related stuff. All the important things are unpacked now, though, and today we reached the point where I felt I could take off for a couple of hours to go exploring.
I rode out towards the coast, taking a 15 mile loop, mostly along quiet country roads. It was glorious, with almost perfect weather, and lovely views. Away from town, I came across very little traffic.
I thought I had picked a fairly flat route for my first outing, but it was still more hilly than I'm used to. However, every important decision involves some compromises. I will just need to work on my hill climbing (which is probably not a bad thing). When I stopped for a break, another cyclist pulled up to share the bench, and we had a chat about the best local routes. I already had some ideas, but now I have some more to try.
This is going to be fun.