Today was the big day- my first ride on (what you would call) a proper bike. It all started last April, a tall blonde said to me "do you fancy going on a bike ride", at that point there is only one answer as the vision of said blonde in cycling shorts popped into my head. Then I found out the bike ride in question was the London to Brighton, but by then I had said yes and I thought I needed a bit of exercise. Two months from the L2B I got on the Mountain bike I bought the previous year having ridden it twice since purchase and off I went for a knackering 7 miles. As the day got near so the panic set in at the thought of 54 miles and the legindary Ditchling Beacon just outside Brighton. So I got some road tyres for the mountain bike and pushed on with the training. The day came. Said blonde did turn up but with boyfriend (but I am twice her age and married anyway) and we cruised home in about four and a half hours with hold ups and London traffic lights. I managed to cycle up the Beacon, as the Mountain bikes was perfect for that one mile out of the 54. I had a few days rest but then had a great urge to get back on the bike, the bug had bitten. Even now with the dark evenings and cold I am getting out there at the weekend for my fix. So yesterday I bought a Felt F85 second hand. Today was the big day of my first ride. It was like riding on an imaginary bike, sort of air guitar cycling. The saddle and the frame felt like they had dissapeard and the thing went along with no resistance. It has 24 gears so even the hills were OK, I had an idea I would be walking up them as I had passed dozens of racing bikes on Ditchling Becon as they walked up the hill. I have not fitted the speedo on yet but I could hardly see where I was going with all the wind in my face. So if you see a strange middle-aged grinning man on a blue Felt bike in North Hampshire- that will be me. How did everyone else get into this?