Ruby sings the blues

“It’s 2000 miles to Beaumaris, we got half a tank of gas, 3 fully packed panniers, it’s dawn, and we’re wearing sunglasses.”

Yes – it’s LifeBoats Ride -1. We start tomorrow night at the Lizard but despite what you might conclude from my entry in Britt Butt Lite last year, I still don’t like to ride more than about 300 miles in a day (yet) so I’m starting off today, stopping tonight after visiting a totally unique graveyard in Dorset (Sorry to be cryptic, I’m still not entirely abreast of the new rules on blogging about the LMs!) and making the second half of the run down through Cornwall tomorrow.

Last time I did this with the RBR we were visiting the Cardinal Compass Points of the UK – also known as the 6 points (You can read my blogs about it here, here, and..oops, there is no Part 3). This year we’re visitng one of every kind of lifeboat station to raise awareness of and funds for the RNLI. Some of the guys have taken sponsorship forms out and about, personally I feel a fraud asking people to give me money for me to do an activity which is about as optional as breathing, so I’ll make my own donation when we get back. If you do feel moved to support what, despite its life-saving role, is a wholly voluntary service please visit our team JustGiving page.

Why lifeboats? Boffin has been a big supporter since he was a young man, when the RNLI intervened to ensure he would be able to become an older man. I imagine
being plucked from a buoy in the middle of the Bristol Channel would inspire lifelong loyalty. I’m more in the deeply grateful category and thought that I was unique in being rescued by the Coastguard while on the bike, but it turns out that Mel was once rescued by the RNLI after knocking himself out duelling for second place in a beach race.

I wrote once before that sailing and riding had many similarities. We pit our talents and our training against a challenge which if handled poorly could kill us. And we thank the deity or ruling principles of our choice through fiscal donation that there are volunteers out there ready to help without judgement if things go wrong.

PS – forgot to explain the blues reference! Camping kit has been expanded by the world’s smallest amp, for Steve Lockwood has an amp for all occasions. As we progress up the coast Ruby and I will be pausing to serenade the seagulls now and again in order to keep my hand in.

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