After having congratulated each other about such a beautiful Sunday initiative, we start with a light heart without worrying unduly about the 60 kilometers ride ahead of us. Destination Watermael-Boitsfort...
From Uccle to Woluwe : piece of cake
At the first pedal strokes we find ourselves reconnecting with the joys associated with cycling. We feel like Philippe Gilbert at the start of a race. Fresh as daisies and invigorated by the morning breeze, we take off charged with energy. Well almost... We obviously did not start with the most relaxing part ... We need to manage a number of climbs through the Kinsendael Natural Reserve to the Bois de Verrewinkel. After a few gear shifts, we eventually reach the Uccle heights.
Our efforts are rewarded... After a refreshing fill of well deserved Aquarius, we continue on a very enjoyable road. We engulf into the Forest of Soignes on paths which make us forget the hustle and bustle of the city. The chirping of birds and the smiles coming from the Sunday strollers now rhythm our pedal strokes.
We reach the Boitsfort pond, revisit the Forest of Soignes to then cross Ten Reuken park. We manage our way through the monthly flea market under the Hermann-Debroux bridge and leave Auderghem for Woluwe-Saint-Pierre via the railway path. We are speeding through the trees. At this time, 21 kilometres are already behind us !
From Woluwe to Berchem : a break and here we go again
As we are starting to feel some hunger, we dismount into Schuman Park. We perform a few clumsy stretches and unpack the sandwiches. Then follows a heated discussion about the feasibility of the route in its entirety. Are we going to close the 60 kilometres loop or will we rather settle for a shortcut before the end ? Being amateurs in the art of cycling, we have a good feeling about us. We are therefore deciding to commit to our initial goal without wavering. Yes, we will go to the end !
The sky blesses our decision with a freezing rain as we are putting ourselves back in the saddle. We put our K-Ways on: nothing will change our minds... We reach the municipality of Evere and we pass the Brussels cemetery. The scenery is becoming more urban. Because it is Sunday, the traffic is fortunately much lighter.
After having passed the canal and taken a few pictures in front of the Atomium, we cross the municipality of Jette through the Parc de la jeunesse, the king Baudouin park, the Marais de Jette... At Berchem-Sainte-Agathe, our displays show 40 kilometres !
From Berchem to Uccle : the loop is closed
Our strengths are starting to fail us. Not one drop of Aquarius left in our bags... Our last supplies consist of a banana and a few centilitres of water.
We gather our courage to cross the expanses of the Scheutbos and the valley of the Pede. It is at this instant that Solange breaks down. She will not advance one more meter. She was quite cheerful but she has given it her all. She takes the subway at Erasme and wishes us the best without looking back. Rendez-vous at home ...
Despite the throbbing pain that tortures our behinds and the headwind on the banks of the Senne, the rest of the pack perseveres. We manage to somehow pass the industrial landscape of Anderlecht. In a last effort, we end our green ride with our head on the handlebar through the Keyenbempt site...
It is 5pm. Solange welcomes us with hot chocolate and a stack of well deserved pancakes. Proud of our performance, we agree on our next sport challenge : the Brussels Sight Jogging ! Olivia Regout