Having finally got the hang of my routes to and from Victoria I sailed across London this morning. There were bikes left at Paddington, my key worked first time, I knew where I was going and the weather was cool and clear. I donned my helmet and yellow reflective Sam Browne and I was off.
The joyous thing about my route from Paddington to Victoria is that it's downhill. When still half asleep I barely need to pedal going through Hyde Park, especially as the Boris bikes are so heavy, I just let gravity pull me along. The way back is a bit harder as it's mostly uphill on a fat-arse Boris bike, but it still beats hideous tube interchanges.
This morning I left my house at 7.25am, got the 7.39am train and was docking my bike near Victoria by 8.20am. That, to me, is amazing. Using the same train from where I live I've missed the 8.44am from Farringdon and, if I change to the district line using the same first train, I get to Victoria for about 8.40am. More than that, it's packed with commuters, stressful and uncomfortably warm. Getting in and out through the ticket gates is horrendous, with people pushing all the time and there's no guarantee of a seat.
More than all this though, I think my body's finally remembered how to cycle. It's been a struggle the last two days but this morning it finally clicked. I could almost hear it sighing 'ah, that's what you want me to do'.
The route I'm taking is not direct but it takes in the park and backstreets. I've negotiated Hyde Park Corner a few times but, even with the cycle lanes etc, I hate doing it. I'd rather cycle 10 minutes more and be happy.