The Tump in December

I obviously care a great deal about the cricket. I woke up in the early hours of the morning dreaming of watching our lads mounting an astonishing rearguard action. I wondered if it might be a premonition of something to get excited about so I got up, opened up the laptop to Cricinfo, desperately hoping to see the English late order batsmen with decent scores to their name, only to find that we'd been rolled over again with the Aussies already having a hundred on the scoreboard for none, Warner clearly on his way to another swashbuckling century. I turned off the alarm that was set so I could watch the last hour, returned to bed, and slept long. To cap it all, it turned out that our one successful bowler in this series has possibly just had his foot broken by a Mitchell Johnson yorker. Cricket is a cruel sport. Once the game and the luck starts to run away from you there is rarely ever a way to stem the flow. Nightmare.

My day hasn't been great but I did at least get out for a bike ride, my first in ages. My photography has been very much prescribed by Ilkley Moor and Shipley of late so it was good to experience some different if still thoroughly familiar vistas. It's actually been quite hard to choose. In the end I've picked a view of my favourite trees. The clouds were quite unusual. They made for an attractive framing here, one I'm not likely to be able to repeat. And it's good to be able to extend my One Tree series (And, yes, I know there is more than one tree here!).

I was feeling very unfit riding out to Burnsall and back. I don't often get overtaken on the bike but I did quite a few times today. Approaching the last hill I could hear voices coming up behind me so I dug in a bit, determined not to suffer any more ignominy. I held them off for a while but I got swept up on the flat section coming into Ilkley. I felt slightly better when I got an acknowledgement from none other than Jonny Brownlee, who was riding at the back of the group. We chatted for a while. He's such a lovely lad. When I mentioned that I'd been taking photographs he wanted to know all about the pictures I'd taken. The two brothers could train anywhere in the world so it's great to know that they still choose to work out on the local roads with their mates, potholes and all. Mind you, that said, he's off to Majorca tomorrow. He said he likes to have a week or so away and then a week or so back home to keep it real. That can't be a bad life!

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