Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Eroica Festival 2015 - Part 2

After a great nights sleep our hosts, Frank and Wendy, served an excellent full english breakfast, perhaps the full Derbyshire, with Maggie's preferred vegetarian sausages (Linda McCartney's) and we were set for the day.

Having made sure I had my iPad, and a printed backup copy of my poetry set for the afternoon, a short drive down to the already busy showground and a fairly long walk from the car park took us to the entrance and we were ready for action.

First on the agenda was a tour of the vintage stalls and a search for a jersey that would pass for vintage on the next day's ride. A brief stop to have a look at the vintage bikes competing for best in show and then on with the tour.

Vintage bike with very small vintage caravan (for vintage dolls)

Soon after that tour was interrupted again, this time by that competitive urge that doesn't go away even with age and 20 years since racing on the roads and velodromes. The Buxton Pump, sponsored by Buxton Water was a bit like a Rollapaluza set up but as you pedal lights indicate an amount of water you'd have pumped and distance covered. I watched a couple of people and thought that doesn't look too hard. So here I was on an MTB on a low gear on a trainer and a countdown in my ears; not too hard and 100m, 200m seemed to go quite quickly and the small group of onlookers were encouraging me, beyond 300m and it felt tough and approaching 500m I thought it would never end. As I staggered off the machine wishing my legs would coordinate properly they told me that my time of 37 seconds put me on the leader board - not bad for my age and fitness.

37 seconds is such a long time!

We wobbled away (well I did anyway) to get some cool refreshment at the Fentiman's bar and it was very cool, loads of ice and a little bit overpriced, but it made me feel better.

Fentiman's botanical gardens (drinks tent)

Near to the CTC gazebo I'd met some of the staff and a few of my fellow former CTC colleagues and partners and we headed for an early afternoon cream tea served in nice vintage pots and crockery - very nice they were too;

Maggie enjoys a nice cup of tea
After an ideal and very sweet lunch I was keen to be ready for my poetry set at 2.30 but once again got diverted. The National Trust, great people to support through a membership, had brought along a couple of miniature penny farthings and I couldn't resist having a go - so much close to the ground that real ones. I listened to the advice about leaning back and that pushing on the pedal tends to steer the wheel and I was off - not in the crashing sense but off on a short loop around the field. That was actually quite fun and now I want a go on a real one (I think).

Miniature penny farthing
"The Parlour of Oratorial Delights and The Emporium of the Unusual" (the Arts Tent) was buzzing as The Della Grants knocking out their belted out their blues, rock and folk influenced tunes to an appreciative audience.

The Della Grants on stage

We took our seats and at the end of the show spoke to the MC and arranged that there would be a near seamless join between the next artist and myself. A few nerves began to set in.


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