At this time of year even the most sedentary types start to feel the urge to venture out in to the light, so this week I am recommending one of my favourite springtime activities: the blossomy evening bike ride.
Find a bike; find a clear-ish night; find a quiet residential area with lots of blossom-filled gardens – De Beauvoir, Canonbury, Queens Park and so on – and go for a gentle evening cycle. The traffic will be starting to lull, the sun will be setting, and the scent of blossom will be drifting down from the trees.
There’s no hurry so don’t pedal fast. Just drift along, away from the main roads. It’ll probably be about perfect a couple of weeks from now when the orange blossom is starting to come out. I have been known to stop and bury my head in a bush for minutes at a time.
It’s a great way to say goodbye to winter. You can almost smell the grass growing.
There’s another one to look forward to later in the year, almost as heady as this: the summertime night cycle. Pick a quiet night, perhaps a Sunday, and cycle through the sleeping city. It’s perfect for those stiflingly hot, sleepless nights. Get out on of your hot flat and pedal over the river with it’s twinkly lights; cycle through fading barbecue smells; enjoy some breeze. I’ll remind you of this one closer to the time.
For now, get yourself on two wheels and go blossom sniffing as the sun goes down. It’s almost as good as a week’s holiday.