I’m back home after an exciting weekend in Embra (no thanks to TransPennine Express – I should know better than to buy advance tickets because it always ends in disaster, in this case all trains cancelled between Lockerbie and Edinburgh, no staff at the station, a replacement bus service that left 15 minutes early stranding half the passengers, and the last-minute rescue by a Virgin-train-in-shining-armour that kindly stopped and swept us all off to … well, Glasgow, but at that point we were beyond caring) for assorted bike-related events at the Edinburgh Festival of Cycling.
After a morning spent watching lots of excited families try out various bikes (I may have tried a few out myself too. I mean, not having any kids oneself is hardly a reason *not* to want a Bakfiets, is it? Especially as it turns out to be a particularly cushy ride) and an afternoon meeting in which I may or may not have broken my New Year’s resolution not to start any more cycling ventures, it was time for the main event, the Women’s Cycle Forum, aka all the best bits of a cycling conference, without any of the parts where a man in a suit reads his powerpoint presentation at you.
Instead, participants got me* launching our Bingo card challenge – yet another mad idea I had on the bike back in March that seemed brilliant at the time. Rather than have people pledge to take one of the actions identified during the evening that would help improve the conditions for cycling – which sounded a bit cheesy – we decided to challenge them instead to complete a whole row or column (or diagonal) of our bingo card. It was only as I prepared to stand up in front of a room full of cycling women that I realised that this was in fact even cheesier but, whether it was the alcohol, the company or what, it was greeted with enthusiasm by the assembled crowd and it seems to have caught the imagination of many on twitter too.
And then we settled down in the bar to discuss the really important cycling issues.
Photos courtesy of Chris Hill of (among many other things) the excellent City Cycling Edinburgh forum. My phone is sadly on the blink which means I am cameraless. I’m also phoneless but that seems somewhat less pressing, to be honest.
* along with other more interesting discussions, and food, obviously.