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First Brighton Ride

It was the January of 2001, when Argos in Worthing were in the process of changing stock for the new season and were no longer stocking items which weren't going to be included in the new catalogue.

"Right" I thought. "I'll try Brighton... hmm, why don't I cycle? It's really far, It'll be an adventure!"

And so, wearing a bomber jacket, I set off on my journey, on my campaign to buy a cycle computer! I had looked at a road map, and photocopied it so I didn't get too lost. By the time I got to Shoreham I was wondering if I was there yet? (I'd never been to Brighton you see) A friendly pedestrian informed me that I wasn't, it was that way (East still). Along the way I was looking for road names, I passed a mysterious house which had not one, two, or even three... it had 7 Skodas! (Well, why not?)

After a little while, I found a road name that co-incided with my map.. I think it was Middle Road. I turned left and followed it. Another road name came off it that co-incided with my map also. And then another, nearly... I think it was Queen Avenue or Road or Street or something, but it was different from my map. After cycling around the block a few times, I realised this was a cruel conspiracy set by the government against the people.. having the same road names in a similar order in a different town (Which turned out to be Southwick). It was apparent that I wasn't in Brighton, so back the the seafront I went and began cycling east some more. At Hove it was looking more build up, and in the distance I saw large buildings and a couple of piers... aha! My brother said I'd know it if I saw it.. how true! My turning point was at the Brighton Centre, which was easy enough to find, and so I made my way up a fairly steep hill, turned left at the lights.. this was apparently Western Road... and a very kind sign somewhere told me this! I didn't have to go for long until I saw the familiar Argos logo sticking out above the pavement, so I found a vacant bike lock place, and proceeded to practise security upon my stallion (it was probably my Saracen actually). Upon entry I was soon the owner of.. a cycle computer! Woo!

The return journey was a little less eventful, I went the same way back as I came, only I switched sides of the road so I didn't cycling head on into traffic, it seemed logical at the time! I knew the way back, it was tiring, it was more tiring, and Southwick & Sompting go on for too long! I eventually made it home, it only took 3 and a half hours! I made a common mistake, eat lots of chocolate, bananas, crisps, milk.. and then feel sick! The best way to replenish shattered energy is not to stuff your face, have a light snack and sit down somewhere! I assume I hurt very much the morning after, but when I was taking a walking-break in Sompting, I felt like I'd grown another 4 inches! Its a nice feeling, walking after you've been cycling for ages.

That trip spawned my liking for long distance cycling (though not so much in the winter... meh) and inspired me to do some of the later mentioned rides, which are mentioned later! I'm suprised at how well I remember this event, as I am now writing it 26months after I did it! Since Brighton I have ridden to Peacehaven, Newhaven, Seaford, Beachyhead and Hastings

My record for Brighton Trips are done from between Worthing Aquerina to The Brighton Centre and back, I have got to Brighton in 28 and a half minutes, and a reasonable time to get there and back is 1hour15, although I have done 1:10. This is a fairer test, because if it is really windy then one way will be fast and the other slow, so a "there and back" time gives a good average! (20miles, 10 each way)

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