Warning! This blog post has absolutely nothing to do with photography so if that's not what you're into to you might want to spend this next 5 minutes doing something else - if you are though then sit back and enjoy!
This past weekend I cycled to France with a friend of mine, Laurynas. The trip to there ended up being 123km and I was pleasantly surprised that I actually managed to get there in a fairly alive state. I hadn't done much training rides in the past two weeks so I was somewhat worried I would be exhausted by the time we arrive but thankfully my legs held up. The city we cycled to, Roubaix, ended up being a bit of a ghost town actually. All the cafes and restaurants were closed and apart from this one parade and the supermarket we barely saw any people. I was somewhat surprised to learn of this as the city is quite notorious for a cycling race "Paris-Roubaix". I guess that one day of the year might be when it shines but unfortunately we didn't get to see the town in it's full glory. Despite that, the dinner at the hotels was mighty grand (my food photography skills might need some refining though).
After a good nights worth of sleep it was time to head back to Brussels, in the morning, at first I didn't not even want to think about getting back onto my bike but after breakfast and a little bit of recovery time what choice did I have. Once we left and the first time I sat back down onto the saddle I was releaved because it didn't actually feel too bad, or at least not yet. Soon after we turned into this path right beside the river and lo and behold, the wind kicked right back up into our faces. The next 30km was quite exhausting but thankfully we took a different route back which lead us through some rather interesting and beautiful areas of Belgium. This meant that beside the wind, the experience was, although tiring, quite enjoyable. It was quite surreal to see so many varieties of Belgium in such a short period of time. When driving through the country with the car, you're either on the motorway where you don't see anything anyway or everything just happens way too quickly for you to take in the atmosphere. Cycling however is different, it's slow enough to let you enjoy the little things you encounter on the road and yet fast enough to allow you to travel pretty lengthy distances in one day. It's one of those sports that allows you to be truly free and that can sometimes be so important when living such an otherwise busy life. After another 125km and a ride through the Hell of Brussels we finally reached home again - it was a fun one.