Bumps, Bicycles and the Great Outdoors

Hello! Last month I was a guest blogger here at Everybody Needs A Little Romance and lookie here, today I’m a regular! How awesome is that? It’s great to be here and thanks very much to all the awesome authors here for the invitation.

It was Mother’s Day on Sunday and I don’t know about you but I feel it is a day that can be fraught with disappointment. I learned a long while ago that the best Mother’s Days are the ones I stage-manage. That way, I get what I expect and I’m not disappointed. Let’s face it, I have only men in my immediate family and I love them to bits but frankly, they need direction;-)

For me, Mother’s Day isn’t about the gift; it’s about doing something as a family that I don’t have to organize! I also don’t cook that day either.  Over the years, after trying different things, I have settled on a picnic if the weather is fine and a movie if the weather is not. This MD, the weather was fine so we had a cookout and a bicycle ride 🙂

We’re a bicycle riding family from way back. First trauma I ever caused Boy Wonder, now 16,  was the time I didn’t snap the baby bike seat on properly and it slid off the back with him in it…he’s fine! He was wearing a helmet and he’s a still a bright boy so no harm done!

We’ve done 9 day bicycle rides, where we’ve ridden 360 miles (gotta love a gel seat) and my husband had a kid tagging along on a bike behind him. There’s nothing quite like riding along a coastal road on a bicycle on a sunny day with the sea just there next to you. Mind you, there’s few things worse than riding in sleet and a windchill of freezing and I’ve had that happen a few times.


I’m not the most co-ordinated person on the planet and I have shoes that snap into the pedals, which makes climbing hills a lot easier. Thing is, when you’re preparing to  stop, you have to click out of the pedals so you have a foot to put down on the ground. I have been known to forget and fall over. Or worse than forgetting, taking a foot out and then trying to put the other foot on the ground. D’uh! Whenever this happens, it’s always in front of a large crowd who generally applaud before helping me up.

DH & I had an awesome seven day ride last year in France. It was so easy compared with the rides we’d done at home and when youDSCF1894 added in the Fench food, the French countryside and hey, just the French en general, it was one of the best times of my life. Here I am drinking “chaud chocolate” hot chocolate at a tiny cafe in a small village on the Canal du Midi in the south of France.

One of the great things about bicycling is there’s time to think and dreaming time is good for authors.  On one of those 9-day rides, I  up a short story which I called On The Road Again. My hero and heroine are fictional and their story is unique to them but the backdrop was the ride we did. The weather, the time spent with school kids with hypothermia, the heat exhaustion, the towns, the huge cooler of ice for sore knees…that’s all real. That all happened.So what’s it about?

OnTheRoadAgainCoverEmailDr. Felicity Hamilton-Smith desperately needs a change of scene so she signs up for a ten-day bicycle ride. The last thing she expects is to run slap-bang into her former fiancé. For her, the past is over and best left behid, or so she thinks.

The last time Dr. Drew Baxter saw Felicity, he broke her heart when he left to serve in Afghanistan. Now, seeing her again is breaking his. 

At 12,500 words, it’s the perfect pocket-sized read to fill in the time when you’re waiting for kids, sitting on public transport, riding in the tractor, or at the end of the day when you don’t want a big read. It’s a steal at 99 cents and you can buy it at Smashwords in every eBook format or at Amazon Kindle , Nook, Kobo, iBooks and everywhere eBooks are sold.

So tell me, did you stage-managing Mother’s Day?

Not a mom? Have you ever ridden a bicycle? Got a great bike story? I’d love to hear it!