As a youngster I was never really interested in cycling. In fact I can’t even recall having a bicycle.
It was never through lack of interest, but I guess lack of opportunity or influence.
Being at boarding school cycles were not permitted, so I guess my parents never thought about buying me one.
The reason I say It was never through lack of interest, is because I do remember some adolescent emotions.
Like envy and isolation.
When I returned home on my school holidays, my friends would visit on their shiny bikes.
They would talk of adventures on distant streets, led by their two wheeled conveyances.
Bright colours, washed and polished chrome, levers, brakes, and spinning wheels.
Maybe I can now blame all the negative aspects of my life on 'Cycle deprivation.
I could just shake my head ruefully and say: 'You know, I never had a bicycle when I was a boy'
Surely people would understand?
I came into cycling much later in life by default really.
I used to play rugby, and after snapping my Achilles tendon I sought cycling as a recuperative form of exercise.
I was instantly struck by the diverse and multiple opportunities that cycling brings to your life.
Living in a beautiful rural area I loved the new perspective. I was able to appreciate everything at a pace that allowed all my senses to take part.
To see the purple moor tops, smell the heather and feel the cool onshore breeze as I was thrilled by steep descent into hidden valleys.
I was able to see over the other side of the hedge, both literally and metaphorically.
I could get fit in natures own Gym, breathing air that would not give me a cold the next day.
Getting closer to nature opened my eyes to environmental issues, to human intolerance (Car drivers), and to the unique camaraderie held by other cyclists.
I now have three bikes and I cycle 6,000 to 8,000 a year.
My low emission car is rarely used, less than 1,000 miles a year.
I use Cycling as a vehicle for charity fund raising and a thread for my other passion, writing.
It is amazing to find so many cyclists who have sublime writing talents and operate blogs from all over the world.
This blog is a perfect example of the warmth and generosity that comes from the cycling family.
My own blog is called http://philipshrimpton.
It attempts to follow my cycling adventures and create interesting and light-hearted articles.