Going Nowhere

It’s a bright, sunny spring morning in April. I should be chucking the Wingman in the sidecar and heading to Derbyshire for the 2020 Round Britain Rally ARSE.

But I’m not. Like every gathering of more than 2 people, the ARSE has been cancelled to help limit the spread of the coronavirus.

It has to be done. But as a person who has designed her whole life around fixing shonky bikes and riding them to places to meet friends, I’m suffering.

(I do know that I am making this complaint from a place of great privilege. I’m still getting paid, I’ve got a comfortable house to hunker down in, and I’ve got no children to protect from this awful disease.  It could be a lot worse.)

But to be going nowhere – that’s a terrible thing. The roads are almost empty, petrol is less than a pound a litre, and the sun is shining.  It’s like one of those cautionary tales about being careful what you wish for – somewhere out there Brendan Fraser asked Liz Hurley to make the world a biker’s paradise but didn’t specify the ability to get out there and use the roads!

Is there are way to turn Going Nowhere into a positive? It’s a challenge. It’s hardly a positive phrase, is it? A career can Go Nowhere. A relationship can Go Nowhere – hmm, perhaps I have more experience of this than I thought!

Therapy? even wrote a song about it, and here’s the key line: “But it’s what’s inside you’ve got to rearrange.”

Under lockdown I’m staring down the twin barrels of Time On My Own and Time At Home, two things I have avoided for about 20 years.

I’m mulling over radical action. Maybe the way to cope with this is just to become another person. Someone who doesn’t ride bikes and so doesn’t mind a life within four walls. Someone who – horror of all horrors – stays in one place.

It’s all gone a bit medieval. We’re fighting a plague that we don’t properly understand. We’ve all become anchorites, self-isolating in our homes, or serfs, unable to leave our villages without the permission of the authorities.

Am I cut out for serfdom? It doesn’t really appeal. Maybe I should dig out those Robin of Sherwood videos and mentally prepare myself for outlawry instead.







Filed under Round Britain Rally

5 responses to “Going Nowhere

  1. Very much enjoyed this post and learned something as well. Didn’t know there was such a thing as an “anchorite”. Definitely not something for me, although I am used to spending a fair bit of time alone, and do feel it can be healthy. Still, there are limits! I hope we all come out of this is good shape and then we can put our current “medieval” tendencies behind us. “Bleib munter!”, as many Germans are saying these days.

  2. highwaylass

    Thanks for reading! How are things in Germany? From here in the UK it looks like your authorities have responded quickly and are keeping on top of the virus…though this may be rosetinted.

  3. Here on the left coast, weather is great, fuel is supposed to be cheap, but I’ve not seen anything since the 23rd of March. I’ve cleaned and re-cleaned, waxed and polished the big KTM. The rear wheel got converted to tubeless and is holding. I fixed a couple of things that had been bothering me on it as well as found a few more to work up the desire to tackle, electrics. I’ve run out of materials and hardware and projects around the house. I’m down to writing here and there and travel planning. Tough to plan a trip you are pretty damned certain won’t happen. I need to feed the sourdough starter and collect my baking notes. Motorcycling is off the table along with cycling for now.
    We mostly miss our grandson. He is only a few minutes away by foot, but we can’t hug each other. And that is the worst part of this for us.

    • highwaylass

      how is the sourdough going? I tried but couldn’t get my head round the instructions and it felt like a terrible waste of flour.

      • I gave up on baking with the onset of hot weather. I’ve been cooking anything that would normally go in the oven outside on the gas grill. Placing an old broken pizza stone on the grates evens the heat from the gas so it works better than the oven in the house.

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