Twinkly Dave – Mud splattered bicycle and pizza enthusiast Growing old disgracefully

June 6, 2013

Garlic peawet

Filed under: bikes,food/booze — dgpowell @ 9:58 am

That, apparently, is the Tenerife delicacy that you “simply have to try”. They’ve dressed it up with a fancy name, ‘mojo’ or something, but that’s all it is really. Peawet. With a massive amount of garlic added.

Quite frankly, that is ACE.

We’d not tried it until the 2nd week of our stay, Jase and I, because the 1st week’s food was little more than fuel for the riding we were doing. Masses of pasta and other carb/protein rich, easily digestable foods than would be burned off while fighting out way up some HC category monster hill the next day.


The views were spectacular, the weather glorious but everything for that one week was focused down on to a rhythm of get up, eat, ride, eat, sleep. No distractions, nothing unnecessary, just ride, rest, recover, repeat. I imagined it would be a bit like my life would be, if I won the lottery…well, perhaps a tad harder than that, but the basic principle was the same.


Each day the sun would come streaming in through the windows of our rented apartment, some strong coffee would be consumed along with masses of stodgy (like it should be) porridge and the hills, mountains, quiet backroads and seemingly empty villages (doesn’t anyone in this country actually do anything?!) were ridden.


We had a plan, training wise, but the riding on offer exceeded our expectations (by which I mean “it was a whole lot tougher than we expected) by so much sticking to it became an epic endeavour. Keep to it we did, though, even when “easier” rides resulted in us having to conquer roads like this:


By the end of that 1st week, we’d begun to feel like we had the measure of El Teide and it’s equally tough brothers and sisters. Put anything in front of us and we’d get over it, in a decent time too. We were living the dream.



Week 2 saw wives, girlfriends, children, fans and wellwishers arrive (OK maybe not the fans and wellwishers) for a ‘summer holiday’ so we duly obliged…though ice creams were substituted for ‘no ice cream’, boozy nights out were substituted for glasses of orange juice and sneaky 5am pre-breakfast rides up mountains were tiptoed out while everyone else slept. We still ‘did’ the tourist thing though, including trying the local peawet, hammering the tourist attractions and hiring unsuitably small cars to drive up one of Spain’s highest peaks


in between bouts of lying by the pool, enjoying the ‘recovery’ sessions.

We need to do that again.


February 23, 2010

Product Review (!): Coffee

Filed under: bikes,food/booze,not bikes — dgpowell @ 8:39 pm

So you’ve ridden all day, for miles…and miles…and miles. Your bike’s now lent against the wall of the garage, still coated in dirt because you’re not a pro and you don’t have a mechanic to magically sort that sort of thing. That’s going to have to wait…possibly until summer, when it’ll be dry and dusty and it won’t need cleaning anyway.

No, instead you’re getting moaned at about something-or-other, just as you stumble through the back door and start the fight against your overshoes, which – after being complete sods to get on – are being complete sods to get off. You’re not entirely sure what the moaning is about, possibly because of what time it is (you knew you were going to be late when you turned left and went over another couple of hills and you knew it would incur the wrath of they-who-must-be-appeased, but you were fine with that – it’d be worth it)? Maybe because you’ve traipsed mud and grime into the kitchen while doing the overshoe-removal dance? Or it could just be because you left the last bike shop invoice out by mistake and the reason you can’t afford to go out for a romantic meal has revealed itself to be those lovely new brake calipers, rather than the bleak economic climate like you claimed, while crawling through the weightweenies component listings.

Whatever it is, you’re in no mood for it. The ratchets on your shoes are refusing to budge under what little duress your numb fingers can provide, your shorts aren’t as comfy to hop and skip round the kitchen in as they are while sitting on your overly expensive saddle and are starting to ride up into places they really shouldn’t.

You need a wash.
And you need some coffee.

Magnus Backstedt knows this.

He has been there. He also has the answer – to the coffee problem anyway, you’ll have to sort the shower/bath out yourself.

Had he been out on the ride with you he would have kicked your arse all over the place. He’s kicked pretty much everyone’s arse on a bike at some point, yours would have been no problem, he’s been a pro for donkey’s years winning big, big races. He’s got the “cyclist’s needs” part of the coffee equation covered. It just so happens that he’s invested almost as many hours drinking coffee as he has training to kick harder arses than yours. In fact he’s blended some coffee, after all that “research”…and this coffee can kick your arse as much as he can.


Now, I’m not claiming that this stuff will be like riding with/against Mr Backstedt himself. I have no idea what that would be like. Probably uncomfortable and somewhat humbling. But, as the website itself claims, it has a “crazy caffeine kick” and as such will have no problem sucker punching your currently hunched over, post big-ride body into a state of wild eyed readiness. Even if those wild eyes are reduced to just apologising for whatever it is you’re meant to still be apologising about from earlier. It was probably the dirt you trawled in through the back door, but that’s not important right now.

What is important is that, even though you’ve just been slapped about the head by enough caffeine to wake a herd of stoned elephants, after one big-mug serving, you fancy another cup. Because it actually tastes quite nice. The packaging claims “Soft acidity and full body with pronounced dark chocolate. A distant hint of fruit that lingers in a slightly dry finish”, which sounds utterly wonderful and exciting, but lets be honest, even though you like a nice cup of coffee you’re no real expert. In fact you once really enjoyed a bog standard cup of coffee at Starbucks, but never had the guts to tell anyone.
This is nice though. It must be, as you’ve just drained the last of what you’ve brewed into a mug and find yourself shaking the jug to get the last drops out.

OK so it tastes nice and has managed to salvage a real person from the fatigued shell of a human that crawled away from the bike a hour ago, but why buy more of it when you can get something that doesn’t taste awful from the local supermarket for less? After all, less money spent on coffee means more money to spend on bikes, right?
Our Mr Backstedt has this covered too: You are spending money on bikes, while spending money on coffee. Not your own bike, admittedly, but then that’s still slowly drying to a rusted crisp in the garage (you’d forgotten about it, hadn’t you – and there’s no way you’re going back outside to wash/relube it now you’ve regained the feeling in your extremities and have just got clean). No, you’ll be supporting the Sprocket Procycling team.

That’s a pro team. Like the one’s you pretend you’re racing against sometimes. Buying the coffee gives them money, thanks to the sponsorship set up. That’s ace. You’re drinking a nice brew AND sponsoring a team…in fact, if you squint really hard, you’re almost part of the team yourself. Practically a pro. Nice one, have another slurp to celebrate.

Disclaimer: I bought this stuff. For full price. No-one offered me anything for claiming it was nice. I just drank it and liked it. So nerr. Maybe you should try it too, you can buy it from here.

January 28, 2010

an indian job…

Filed under: food/booze,lunacy - mine,not bikes — dgpowell @ 3:07 pm

Wedged into a booth seemingly lifted straight from a John Wayne movie, before being covered in the prerequisite pink flock wallpaper to give it a clasic 60s sheen, 4 men huddle round a table in a cosy Indian restaraunt.
Nestled amongst tightly packed buildings, hiding from the dark at the foot of an anonymous, steep sided Calderdale valley, the light beaming from the restaraunt’s windows spills out onto the street, chasing the pre-meal chatter as it flows out through the doors and echoes around the night.

The tonal tales of far away places and devilishly done deals, escaping through the entrance, seem to intertwine with the piped music, creating a culturally cosmopolitan air with an infectiously northern twang around the huddled booth, but begins to die down as the procession of sliver trays begins to make it’s way, carried deftly by experienced hands, towards the already crowded table.

The popadoms, by this point, have already been eaten.
First judo-chopped with surprising aggression before being dunked in an array of dips and pickles and systematically demolished by all 4. Barely a sentence had been broken as they were removed and gobbled. The talk had crossed continents, won races and bounced off car bonnets, untroubled by the addition of pre-meal appitisers, but now, as the main courses began to energe from the kitchen that was no doubt once a living room in a terraced house, it slowed, became more measured and directed itself at the food before it.

The table began to fill. As the curry desires of each of the 4 were laid out, subtle introspection took over from selfless fascination. Jason had laid out the constituant parts of his order on his bejewelled plate as far apart as he could. His fork slowly tracing a convoluted route between them, climbing over every single mound before slowing, reasessing and diving back down towards the next without stopping or tiring. It seemed a bit Daft.
Brant, meanwhile, was busying himself with reshaping the angles his mound of tikka had arrived with, seemingly unhappy with the steepness with which the lamb left the chicken. A small, contented smile spead across his face as he leant back to survey his reworkings. “I can slacken it off slightly further if I reinforce the rice behind it” he mumbled, before hunching forward again.
Across the still filling table, Steve watched Brant’s angular modellling, keeping his own considered opinion back as he began to merge one portion of his main course with another. Adding more to his plate he created, built upon and changed completely a small empire of food before him.
The waiter seemed to know exactly what he was thinking and delivered another tray of keema rice just as he called for it, to diversify further the meal in front of him in a way that he hadn’t originally intended, but now found to be exactly as he wanted.

The table began to groan under the sheer weight of dishes resting on it as the tablecloth finally vanished completely. Trays of condiments perched perilously, hanging over the edge of the drop down onto the carpet far below and swaying slightly in the breeze.

I, as the 4th member of the booth, clutched onto my half a pint of Kingfisher and leant as far back as I could as if to balance out the food in front of me, while pondering the politeness of counting the calories in a large serving of boiled rice and lamb korma.

Steve’s arm stretched out toward a waiter as he moved forward to deliver another tray of food, keeping him back from a sizzling jalfrezi close to the drop off the table and halting him in his tracks.
He reached out towards the bhindi bhaji ocupying the centre of the spread, before pausing.

“Hold on lads, I’ve got a great idea…”

Note: all, or at least the vast majority, of this nonsense is completely made up. In fact you probably shouldn’t read it, it’s pretty much just lies, exaggeration and the end of the italian job badly rehashed. And anyway, I didn’t even have a korma.

March 2, 2009

right yeah, erm, what?

Filed under: bikes,food/booze,lunacy - other peoples,new car — dgpowell @ 1:05 pm

Oh look, we’re back online, w00t, hello.

Back from Ste’s stag do in Barcelona, mental city that – a text i sent semed to sum it up quite well: “it’s mad, like a cross between Vienna and the Gaza Strip”. 3 Euros for a coke in the Irish bars though, and 10 for a goblet of beer on the pavement cafe’s. Crikey. Nontheless, notches were cranked upwards. Many notches. The Irish were outsung in their own bar (but luckily they won the match, so we left without dying), casualties were taken and the World’s Worst Bar (landlorded by jimmy hill, no less) was treated to a bit of the Brits Abroad mentality.

hit the beach

That’s the beach local to the hotel – not bad for a Feb morning eh?

Next up: ride a bike, get the car booked in for it’s MOT (and find out why the dashboard doesn’t like kicking into life…and get them to check that they did a half decent job on the CV joints, cos i’m not sure they did last time). Oh and pay gordon brown hundreds for the priviledge of owning the damn thing. Thanks Gordon.

January 25, 2009

clambering back aboard

Filed under: bikes,food/booze — dgpowell @ 6:59 pm

got up quite late (for a sunday) crammed bike back into back of car, sped over to Wayne’s, crammed his bike in the back of car, took scenic route to gisburn forest (read: made up new route), met rich in car park, rode “good old” trail, looked at blossoming DH course, played in woodsy singletrack, snuck a sneak peak at the new trails, fell off on innocuous little corner, palm of right hand now really really sore, went to pub, got funny looks from woman behind bar for wanting mild not lager

new trail

all in all, a gentle way of getting back on the bike…with a surprisingly painful little crash, oww 🙁

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