However, what really happened went something like this...
To avoid the weekend rush I headed south on Thursday with two bicylces attached to the back of my car (as the train was both more expensive than a tank of petrol - though it's close! - and there was no way I could handle two bikes) with the rack borrowed from the boglin/lupercal collective. Things went well. I teased my speed a little as I didn't want to lose bicycle or sanity with an accident on the M40 or A34 to limited success - I had to stop twice to reattach bicycles. I can assure you that this isn't fun on a main road. Just trust me.
Eventually I got to Southampton where I deposited one bicycle, put up with the third degree about my personal life/weekend plans from my mother (one day I'll tell her then she'll wish she never asked) and headed to Winchester to appear rather sweaty and bedraggled on kantti's doorstep. Fortunately there was nothing wrong with me that wirewool and a small clothes bonfire couldn't fix, so soon all was well in the world.
Delightful food, delightful company and some work later and it was Saturday.A vague plan to cycle from Winchester to Salisbury and back had been shelved as "too long" so Stockbridge (10-15 miles) was considered a more realistic target. So off we set. Into what the BBC described as "Sun". And it was sun. For the first 5 miles. Then it started spitting. Then raining. Then before you can say "What colour is that car coming around the bend?" she was in a pile on the floor after an emergency-stop-gone-wrong and I was failing to salvage my dignity by also falling off though not as bloodily or spectacularly.
After discovering that small villages don't have pubs, let alone those that sell Hot Chocolate we carried on to Stockbridge. This included the aptly named "Cattle Drovers Hill" which was not pleasant, so by the time we reached Stockbridge we descended (sweat and blood included) on the first pub and had a sit down. Some more cycling, some more hills, some lunch, some tractors and some ice-cream later and we were back. And exhausted.
Obviously the thing to do in these circumstances is to go to Basingstoke, so it was off to Dr Fells to moan about how NIN are crap now and delight in some Skinny Puppy. Nice night, though leaving my car in the local young-person's-recreation-centre did leave me a bit on edge.
Sunday we did some museums - the Great Hall I last visited in 1986 for the Domesday Book exhibition; Westgate and City Museums. The City Museum had some wonderful relief models of how Winchester developed in its early days which I'm always a sucker for; then there was some relaxing, dinner and all too soon it was Monday morning. Worse than that it was a Monday morning when I had to go to Wolverhampton in the rain.
Anyway - must get on with the day now, recover from badminton last night, think a little about Ministry tomorrow and the rest of the week; and pack my ThinkPad off to IBM again. I love it I really do - I just keep breaking it...
For those who are interested our (large) route map is here, and the elevation map (rather exaggerated) is here. 32 miles (give or take) with about 620m worth of climb. It seems so much more on bicycle.
Finally, in the spirit of planning, I'm going to do c2c (140 miles) or Castles and Coast (200 miles) this autumn - any takers?
I need a cycling icon too. This one will do on the basis I am wearing a cycling top but it's not quite the same.