Sorry long post where not much happens.
Belatedly I finally managed my first proper week of 2014, that is commuting (yay) admittedly in bloody awful weather. Mixed week really, Monday was damp, very damp, moses gate is now a right mess, they are doing a load of treework and the machines are churning the place up. "Damned inconvenient of them doing it midwinter" then I figured they may well be shifting windfall/storm damage, duh, of course. Met a fella commuting on a panniered up 29er, caught up with him on the outwood trail which he had joined earlier than me got me wondering on his route, didn't get chance to ask him tho, brief chat, he told me he commuted from smithills to manchester, then he went unexpectedly left as I went right. Minor incident while overtaking a parked HGV, a bmw driver squeezed past me so he got the finger, he pulled up further on, expecting a load of abuse I merely road passed saying not very sensible passing there. Turns out he didn't just want to shout abuse he wanted an argument. He was an experienced driver I'll have you know, but bugger all experience at being a cyclist I'll wager. Anyway apparently it's my fault people hate cyclists so sorry about that. Ride home ended early, a flat in darcy lever which turned out to be 3 punctures all at once, was fun fixing them seeing as I oly spotted them one at a time, patch replace pump, damn , remove patch replace damn etc etc.
Tuesday was even damper, looked out the window to check the weather and saw mr 29er from monday riding passed my house, small world. Figured he may be using the bury canal so thought I'd give it a go, muddy, also when I got to the irwell sculpture trail bridge it was bloody closed, proper fenced off too, grrr. Detour into radcliffe then. Riding home I decided to look for a different route around moses gate, up the road at nob end, little lever appears to be ginnel tastic, prospective route for drier times. Absolutely lashed it down as I approached home so nightride was cancelled again.
Thursday was proper wet, I'd been scoping the maps and found a new cut through to little lever, bit of mud, a few horse stiles then a grassy (saturated at the time) path, again possible route in future but no better at the moment than my usual. Got to work pretty wet, one of those shoes on the radiator days. Ride home was marred by an audi driver, he pulled out of a side street right infront of me, I remained calm, dunno if he wondered where the hell that frowning cyclist in his rear view mirror had come from (assuming he did at some point check his mirror). Saw at the junction that he was on his mobile, grrr, but it's a nice night (so far) I'm on my bike, I shall remain calm. Next junction he went into right turn lane and subsequently bombed across the junction to jump the queue for straight ahead. I caught up at the next set of light, as I was right next to his window (me going right, him left) I decided to have a chat, suggested he put his phone down and concentrate on driving, didn't end well, got a bit shouty, ah well. Got to the outwood trail where the dire weather kicked in again, heavy rain and hail, there are times when I really miss having a peak on my helmet, hail bouncing off my nose can be added to that list. Shoes back on the radiator when I got home.
Friday started badly pulled on my trusty supa poohbahs and the right sole decided to part company with the rest of the shoe, oops, looks like radiators aren't kind to aged (15ish years) footwear. Rode in, got wet feet, had to dodge a lad on a bike with no light riding no handed down a road weaving all over the place (added for balance incase anyone thinks I'm too anti car :-). I've decided the extra 0.8 mile road route through little lever is probably a good bet for the moment for dodging the copious mud in moses gate. OK ride in, ride home was ok but again turning to heavy rain halfway home, spinning along the outwood trail I passed 3 guys on mtbs, said Hi then not long later peeled off down the steep muddy hill that CX bikes are seemingly made for, sliding ddonw the lads obviously saw me heading down and stopped to whoop and cheer, I did dab but was pleased with myself and the crowd appreciation made me grin, shouted thanks and rode home smiling, I love cycling.