Providing bespoke care nationwide for clients with spinal injuries and neurological conditions
SIA’s annual cycle challenge – Budapest to Vienna, via Bratislava. In the afternoon varied flights deposited just under 40 individuals who had signed up to raise money for the Spinal Injuries Association. As many will know the SIA is an organisation TCC has been closely linked with for the past 9 years. Included in this group were Julie Tailor, Sarah Hinsley, Chris Freestone and myself.
We were taken to a bike shop just behind the Opera House who had the delight of trying to match up bikes to individuals. The hybrid bikes themselves were of good quality but verging on the heavy side.
Immediately “customisation” jobs commenced with pedals and saddles being changed. There was a lot of focus on the saddles themselves and the comfort that they might offer to the respective backsides of the riders. It was discovered that some had paid extra for a lighter bike and others had brought extra cushioning for their saddles.
Whilst no actual physical altercations took place it is reasonable to say that words were exchanged. Handbikes were assembled for the 6 individuals who would be going the full distance of 220 miles with the power of their arms alone. Truly amazing.
In an attempt of team bonding we retired to the nearest café. Conversation returned once more to backsides, tissue damage, “lubing” up and whether you can “overlube”. Chris felt it very important that there should be a clearly evidenced person centred rescue plan. This should be focused upon himself. Sarah and Julie were selected for that role and the additional necessary training commenced. The speed of their response to verbal commands from Chris was deemed essential.
A short training ride was organised taking the party to Heroes Square (picture below) before the comforts of our hotel. This might have been easier if we had avoided rush hour – but no collisions actually occurred. Supper was arranged and we were informed of an early start of 7:30 AM. This allowed more conversation of saddle sores; the amount of medication that the team doctor Susie might have in her bag and how quickly we might need it. An early night was agreed to ensure that we were all rested for the big off. Two of TCC’s party broke curfew and went out with others to sample the nightlife of Budapest. This was a mistake.