Almost a year ago I was carefree in Europe about to follow the Spring classics in Belgium & France. I bought a bike in Oxford, caught the Eurostar over to Paris & rode around Belgium for a month. I still recall the roads and cycleways from each day spent riding in the rain. Stopping in little towns for Moules frites & beer before heading home & settling in by a heater. Following the classics in Belgium felt like watching a suburban football match in Melbourne. Everyone in the street comes out for an hour or 2, grabs lunch and a few beers at the local sausage sizzle & waits for the entertainment to unfold. First up was the Tour of Flanders – i rode out to Oudenaarde to the Koppenberg climb where the cobbles were packed even 3 hours prior to the bunch passing through. It was cold and damp and the wind got through to your bones. Paris Roubaix, La Fleche Wallone & Liege-Bastogne-Liege flickered by in the next three weeks and all I can really recall are the jarring cobblestones, my beloved stowaway jacket, how delicious chips that are triple fried taste and how hospitable other cyclists & travellers can be.