Thursday, 3 June 2010

A bike called . . .

"They're that sort, you know, if they were at the Last Supper they'd order chips."

That's one of my favourite lines from one of my favourite films, Shirley Valentine, and I was reminded of it recently.

You see, I have a confession to make, an embarrassing secret to reveal. I give my bicycles names! That may seem to you like a quaint little thing to do (or something that needs psychiatric analysis) but the lone, long-distance cyclist needs a companion of sorts. Give your bicycle a name and it becomes a companion of sorts! Imagine being on the most desolate road in Wester Ross as darkness descends; you're trying to fix a punture in rivers of rain while being molested by midges; not only have you eaten your last bit of coconut ice but you've just realised that you've missed the one hour this century when the Spar in Achiltibuie is open. Well, you can take it all out on your bike, Mr Boo!

I've taken to naming my bikes after characters from favourite films so I've decided to call my new Thorn Sherpa that will take me around the world, Shirley, after Shirley Valentine. In the film she sets out to change her life and achieve her dream of travelling. It's a film that is at times funny and at times poignant, with a brilliant script and wonderful characters. If you've never seen it or not watched it recently, why not dig out a copy.

Oh, and Mr Boo? He's the toe-curling comedian in Little Voice . . . "I went out with a blow-up woman once . . . I had to let her down gently."

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