Saturday, April 11, 2020

Diary of Covid-19 confinement, day twenty-six

Day twenty-six

French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day twenty-six
Cleaning my bike


Obviously cleaning the toilets and changing the bedding wasn’t quite enough to occupy me for one day, so luckily Adrian was on hand to supervise my first lesson in simple bike care and maintenance, that started with cleaning my bike. Now Katie bike isn’t being used, it is the perfect time to get her looking her best and start to learn a little bit about her nuts and bolts.

The cleaning was fiddly, but with my trusty (old) toothbrush I was able to get in and degrease all the hard to reach places. Once washed, rubbed down and left to dry in the sun, we polished and buffed and had two gleaming bikes. 

French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day twenty-six
Removing the gear selector

It was then time to go into Adrian’s workshop where things got a little more serious. A Brompton with a dynamo in the front wheel hub and a Sturmey-Archer gear thingy in the rear hub is not designed for a quick release to change an inner tube. Although we took off the front and back wheels, there were so many tiny parts that all need to be removed in the correct order, stored safely and put back, again in the right order, I can't say I have 'learned' how to do it - ie if I get a puncture at the roadside I'm walking or phoning a friend! The last job was to wax the chain before Katie bike was carefully folded and put away once more. A long day out on the bikes, with a morning coffee stop, a picnic and an afternoon beer stop, on a sunny day, with friends is something I am so looking forward to when this is over.

French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day twenty-six

April holiday memory

Today’s lookback on our April holidays is a photo from Lautrec, a village we drove through in Gizmo our Mini Cooper on the 11th April 2010, on the way to our first visit to Carcassonne. Lautrec is a medieval city that is famed for being one of the Plus Beaux Villages de France and is home to a special variety of pink garlic, that has its own fête in August. It is certainly beautiful, but as our visit was in April, sadly there wasn’t much going on.

French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day twenty-six
Save lives, Stay at home

Stay indoors, stay safe.

I know it is a long weekend for Easter and school holidays for some, but please do stay at home, wherever in the world you are. It will save lives.

Lockdown library

My reading selections today are two novels by Kim Nash, Amazing Grace and Escape to Giddywell Grange. Neither of them are set in France, but both are beautifully written, with fun characters and will leave you feeling so much better about the world than when you started reading them. They are both only 99p on kindle UK at the moment.

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