“Hear Ye! Hear Ye! Let’s bring this meeting to order!” cried chairman Neil. “Today’s agenda is a ride to Langlands Garden centre at Shiptonthorpe. Meet at Walkington Pond 0945, out via North Newbald, Hotham, South Cliffe, Market Weighton to Langlands. All in agreement say Aye!”
As hands started to be raised in favour, one dissenter cried out “Point of order! The weather forecast is showing 70% chance of rain 🌧️ and only 4-5°C 🥶 so it’s a Nay from me”. Not sure which forecast he was looking at but it prompted a comment from another member questioning whether his sanity had been affected by the sun on a recent holiday. 🤔 In the end six Knights turned up to brave the cold air.
Just as we were beginning to climb our way along Middlehowe Road, Michael noted a problem with Heather’s rear……. mudguard that is. Seems it had snapped in two pieces so to be on the safe side it was better to remove it entirely. “I’m taking that back to the shop for a refund” uttered Neil expectantly hopeful.
On reaching the junction at the north end of Middlehowe Road, Neil stopped to look for a “pond” in the Memorial wood, obviously fed up with all the ridicule heaped in his direction for his constant mentioning of the “memorial pond”. After trudging through the wood the only thing he found was a muddy pit. As we got set to continue, someone asked “Which way are we going now? Straight on or to the right?” “Let’s put it to the vote. Who wants to go right?” asked Neil raising his hand hopefully. Unfortunately for him the “motion” was defeated by 5-1 so we continued along Littlewood Road to High Hunsley.
On reaching the next junction it was time for another vote. “Straight on down Trundlegate or right to North Newbald?” “Ooh! I’ve never been down Trundlegate” said Graham, however on this occasion the “motion” for North Newbald was carried unanimously. Heading directly into the cold westerly wind we plummeted to the bottom. By the time we turned to South Newbald our faces had assumed a style of “rigor mortis” due to a combination of speed of descent and the cold. From there, we made our way across to Hotham.
Setting off along the Cliffe Road, Michael took up the “chair” position. “Are we turning left somewhere?” he asked. “No, all the way to Market Weighton”. The “chain gang” didn’t quite work textbook style but as each took a turn in the “chair”, we soon reached the junction to Giant Bradley Way. Heather, displaying a momentary lapse in the navigation department, was about to turn left onto the main carriageway before shouts from the others put her back on the “right path”. Thereafter it was a short hop through Market Weighton to Langlands.
On arrival at the cafe, we were just “parking” our bikes in the outside seating area when an assistant came to advise us “You can’t be in this area, it’s dangerous” pointing to the partially collapsed wall. “But we’re only leaving our bikes” we insisted. Eventually Common sense prevailed. After a brief “lunch break” it was back to “business”. The next item on the “agenda” was the return journey. The first proposal was back through Goodmanham to Holme-on-the-Wolds while the second option was via Kiplingcotes. When Option 1 was “passed” unanimously, “I love democracy” declared Michael enthusiastically. Great when things go the way you want!
After negotiating our way back to Market Weighton we turned onto the Londesborough road. At this point chairman Neil, still recovering from a bout of lurgy, decided to take the easier “option 2” route home at his own pace. “I’ll meet you again at Etton” he advised. The first major climb of the day came as we passed through Goodmanham rising around 85m over 4.8km giving a good test of lungs and legs. Over the top and there was a chance for recovery as we headed downhill to the Middleton road.
Turning towards Holme-on-the-Wolds what little wind there was now came from behind making progress relatively swift. On the next “leg” we headed downhill once again through South Dalton. Just as we were building up momentum to tackle Dalton ramp, a car on the road ahead decided to stop in the middle until realising we were fast approaching before edging over to the side leaving just enough room for us to squeeze. Despite the interference, Michael was not to be outdone and proceeded to wind up the big gear racing to the top with the best time of the day.
True to his word, chairman Neil was waiting at the top of Etton ramp like David Bailey camera in hand. “There’s only six minutes difference in the routes” he declared as he rejoined us for the final “item on the agenda”. The route home, taking us from Etton through Cherry Burton and everyone’s favourite hill sprint of “Granny’s Hump”. As the meeting drew to a close, the AOB item consisted mainly of the expected weather forecast for the next week or two, leaving the date for our next meeting open.