I've talked enough about me …

… now you talk about me for a while.

How much is too much? How much do you really want to know about a person the first time you meet them?

On my regular Saturday morning ride with friends today we were joined for a couple of kilometres by another cyclist who happened to be going in the same direction as us.

He cycled next to one of the other guys in our bunch and immediately struck up a conversation … about himself. Within a very short time he had divulged his recent work history and his current yearly earnings (which are, I must admit, substantial) as well as several other bits and pieces about his life.

My friend who was chatting with him let him know where we meet on Saturday mornings and invited him to join us. I hope he decides to come riding with us; we’re always looking for extra cyclists to be part of our group. However, if he does join us, I hope he’ll quickly discover that he doesn’t need to impress us with his achievements. We’re more than happy to simply take people as we find them.

Have you met people who want to bombard you with impressive facts and figures within moments of meeting? How do you react? What do you think it says about someone’s self image if they act that way?

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Perth Criterium Series 2008

I’m looking forward to some excellent cycle racing from Friday the 25th to Monday the 28th of January.

The Perth Criterium Series 2008 is on its way with some spectacular racing around various Perth street circuits. The series is being run by the team at TriEvents and promises to be a highlight of the Australia Day long weekend.

Criterium Racing is cycle racing at its most exciting – a fast-paced, multi-lap race on a tight and flat street course of approximately 1km in length. Criteriums are raced over a specified time rather than a distance with the races not lasting longer than 1 hour meaning the racing is fast and furious! Criterium Racing gives spectators the opportunity to be close to the action!

The Perth Criteriums is made up of four events across Perth over four days. The events are afternoon / evening races in four high profile locations – Joondalup, Perth, Victoria Park and Leederville.

Perth is home to some of Australia’s most talented bike racers, many of whom will be lining up for the Perth Criteriums. There will be an Open Men’s and Women’s category and a support Men’s category.

Make sure you come along and be part of this exciting event!

The first event of the series gets underway at 5:55 p.m. in Joondalup on Friday the 25th of January. Race two action begins at 12:30 p.m. on Riverside Drive in the city with the spectacular Swan River as its backdrop. On Sunday afternoon the action will be in Victoria Park from 2:40 with riders taking on the challenging but popular Albany Highway circuit. The final race will be help on the public holiday Monday afternoon on Oxford Street, Leederville starting at 2:55.

Western Australians are great supporters of this kind of cycle racing and there’s sure to be plenty of spectators watching each event.

I’m hoping to be involved with the events in one way or another. (No, I won’t be competing. I couldn’t keep up with these guys on their warm up laps.) I let you know more in a few days.

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Golf anyone?

Are you a golfer? You’ll soon be able to become a member of the world’s longest course. The new course will span Australia’s iconic Nullarbor Plain.

Nullarbor Links is an 18-hole golf course spanning 1,365km and crossing two states of the Australian outback.

The Nullarbor Links concept is unique. The 18-hole par 72 golf course will span 1,365 kilometers with one hole in each participating town or roadhouse along the Eyre Highway, from Kalgoorlie in Western Australia to Ceduna in South Australia. Each hole will include a green and tee and somewhat rugged outback-style natural terrain fairway. The course would provide a quintessential Australian experience and a much-needed activity/attraction for travelers along the renowned desolate highway.

Eight holes have already been constructed, with the other 10 to be completed by the middle of 2009.

It sounds like it could make for some amazing golf trips. I can imagine a bunch of guys packing up the car and heading off for the ultimate golfing trip.

I must admit that I’m not a big golf fan. I really don’t see the point, but I do love our Nullarbor. I’ve cycled across the Nullarbor five times  … . so far.

I wonder what other sports we could see played across the expanse. Maybe it’s time we put up a set of goal posts in Kalgoorlie and another set in Ceduna and had a decent game of footy.

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Bikes Outsell Cars … Again

BicycleFor the eighth consecutive year Australians have bought more bikes than cars. With fuel prices continuing to rise and the huge health benefits of cycling it’s hardly surprising.

We’ve been a one car family for many years now and we save a huge amount of money due to the fact that I commute by bicycle. I must admit that I get a feeling of great satisfaction every time I cycle past a petrol station, knowing that my fuel is a lot cheaper and healthier than what they’re offering.

In a story titled Bikes outsell cars for eighth straight year, News.com.au says that we’re experiencing a boom in bicycle sales.

More than 1.4 million bikes were bought around the nation in 2007, compared to just over one million new motor vehicle sales, according to figures compiled by motor vehicle sales monitoring agency VFACTS and Customs.

Climate change and a bigger focus on health are just a couple of great reasons to get out and ride. It’s time to rediscover what we’ve always known; cycling is fun.

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Bight Me

When we cycled past the Great Australian Bight last year we stopped to have a quick look at the cliffs. I was once again reminded of one of the great lessons God taught me on one of my first visits by bike.

Many years ago on our way to Canberra by pushbike, we stopped for a quick peek. Being someone who’s afraid of heights I wasn’t too keen on getting too close to the edge.

From a safe distance back I could see a spectacular view across the ocean and some of the other cliffs.

When I finally plucked up the courage to move slowly forward I got to the edge – on my hands and knees mind you – but I got there. The view was so much better because I could look down and see the surf pounding the rocks. I could see a lizard running through the cracks in the rocks. I could look straight down and see the rock-face disappear before my eyes. I was up close to the action and the view was no longer just ‘nice’ it was breathtaking, exhilarating.

I could have thought – no that’s not for me – and to this day I would never have known what I’d missed. I would still think I’d seen the most spectacular view. It was only when I moved away from my comfort zone and got close to the edge that I realised what it was all about.

We need to move out of what’s comfortable when we serve God because it’s only when we can rely on nothing else but God that God can truly work.

As we seek to serve God we can do one of two things. Do our very best for God and hope that it’ll be good enough – or let God do his best through us – knowing that nothing less really is good enough.

It’s scary when we’re not in control and we don’t know where God will lead us next but it’s a fantastic ride.

God is calling each of us to participate in his plans for this world. Not if we feel comfortable about it but calling us to be involved – relying only on the fact that we know the God we serve – and we know that he will equip us for every task.

Are we listening? More importantly – are we obeying?

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