Another Fine morning greeted us as we woke up in Ayr this mornin' and spirits were high as we cleaned our completely filthy bikes in the sun outside the fine Chalmer's hostel. But as usual we faffed about way too long and the weather decided to take a turn for the worse and we were left to begin our cycle in the pouring rain. Never nice.
After yesterday's idyllic experience of sun, tailwind, and breathtaking scenery I'd changed my opinion of Scotland. Maybe it wasn't going to be so tough after all. But this morning we got a slight glimpse of the wild Celtic wraith that could threaten to chop us down at any time. But again Jim donned his (ridiculous) blue Braveheart battle makeup/suncream and he led us out to battle the elements.
Sean's starting to get the hang of this ol' map reading business and if you forego the fact that he refuses to pick either the easiest or shortest route you could say he did an exceptional job today! And as he only seems to get us lost in areas with decent scenery these days I guess it's forgivable.
Neil was mourning the fact that he never gets a chance to appreciate the scenery because he tends to be struggling up the hills and then bombing down the other side due to his, um, gravitational advantage, so I've decided that tomorrow I might paint a few landscapes for him so he knows what he's missing. I tend to get a bit bored waiting for the 'older gents' to catch up with me on the top of the hills so I might as well set up an easel and paint a few pictures for them to pass the time....! hehe
After a rough morning the clouds dispersed and we ploughed on like a well oiled machine & before we knew it we were in Kilmacolm being fed by a massive support team including Tara, Rose and Stephen & Fiona's kids and Tom & Kate's kids. Good work folks.
The second half flew by all smooth with the only event being me getting a puncture on a mental dual carriageway. As I began to take off the wheel Eoin FORCED me to move 50m down the road in the van so I didn't get turned into roadkill. Paul 'Legs of Jelly' Kelly and Paul 'doin' rightly for his age' Collins obviously weren't so concerned about me general health and instantly accused me of cheating. After cycling twice round the next bleedin' roundabout to shut 'em up wasn't enough for them & the stick continued deep into the evening. I thought the midges around Lough Lomond were bad but they're nothin compared to those two lads. Tomorrow I'm gettin the support team to buy me some Kelly/Collins repellant to go with the insect repellant.
By the way the 'youth hostel' beside Lough Lomond is a flippin' castle where Robert de Bruce used to have his hunting Lodge. That's a bit of history for ye.
And apologies Paul. It's not your fault Kelly ryhmes with jelly. You're a master of the bike. If your prefer I can call you Ally 'legs of steel' McBeal or something.