Cycling scenes during lockdown

Cyclists were extremely fortunate during much of the lockdown. They could escape onto empty roads in fair weather to enjoy the changes of spring time – the main flush of daffodils, the gradual change to the white narcissi, the rise of the cowslips and the flowering of bluebells. But for one rider, three scenes will remain in his mind for years to come:

  • Descending into Bourton, surely one of the country’s most visited villages, on a warm spring afternoon, the Windrush was lined with cherry blossom and magnolia and the banks lined with benches; but on those benches, right along the river’s length, there was not a single, as they say, ‘bums on seats’. It was as if a perfect landscape had been scrubbed clean of human presence.
  • As he rode into Chipping Norton, he was overtaken by what the Guiness Book of Records states is the fastest garden shed in the world – a slightly disorientating experience.
  • The lane above Little Tew was totally deserted, just a by-road, little used at the best of times, but glancing over a stone wall he was disorientated once more by the sight of two dromedaries/camels chewing the cud and eying him with little interest; the grass was much more enticing. Apparently, that land belongs to a local circus with the fields used for winter quarters by their animals.

June – July 2020