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Seven days already into the new year! The start in our household in spite of all the confidence of a nascent Year turned out to be a mini disaster, namely I have picked up one of my rare colds. No, not man flu but something worse.

I used to get regular, once a year, colds which used to drain me physically and mentally and send everyone around me into despair. As I got older I have had less and less of these colds. I can actually trace the source of this one. During a recent examination of a baby I found myself covered in snot when the cooing baby decided to sneeze in my face and deposit a trillion virus laden droplets all over me. The things we have to do on the front line in the name of preserving the human race! Ah well any excuse to try and drown the bastard (the virus, not the baby) in swig loads of whisky.

The good news is that I have now broken the back of it and hopefully in the next day or two I shall be back on Trekkie. One positive aspect of being laid up is that I have managed to catch up on reading. In my very first blog I mentioned that I was re-reading Andrew Sykes cycling travelogue – Crossing Europe on a Bike Called Reggie. I managed to finish it and I must admit reading it the second time around was much more enjoyable as I will be covering a small part of his route in September for my own challenge.

I have now started and am a third of the way through Andrew Sykes’ followup cycling trip – Along the Med on a Bike called Reggie. This one is even more fascinating as it takes you through parts of Europe, until recently engaged in major conflict, but now enjoying the relative peace of The European Union. Andrew’s writing style is smooth, his command of the English Language is excellent, and this, combined with his insight into the lives of ordinary people he meets on his ride and his dry wit, makes for first class reading. I would recommend both his books to anyone who has hope for the human race, particularly in the current frenzy of UKIP fuelled xenophobia!

In Andrew’s current book I have reached Dubrovnik and looking forward to exploring this fascinating city on his “rest day” but what I can’t get out of my mind is the sheer beauty of some of the places he has just cycled through, particularly the Bay of Kotor and the village of Perast – feel a holiday coming up in this part of the world.

Coming back to my “worse than man flu” flu I must admit I have had excellent care from Val in spite of her own problems, but I shan’t go through these to spare her blushes and her fractured ribs! I just hope that she doesn’t catch my virus in her current state.

On a more positive note I have discovered http://www.bikestudio.co.uk  based in Lutterworth, Leics. They take you through from basic to advanced training at very reasonable costs. Hope against Cancer the charity behind my challenge “The Italian Job” have managed to secure even better rates for the riders who have enrolled for the ride in September. I am definitely going to sign up.

Till next week…now where is that whisky?

Click on this link for my virginmoney giving page.