Camchain and tensioner seen up close in a cutaway bike engine

Home Travel StoriesScotland With Friends - August 2014

Knaresborough And Home

By Ren Withnell

It's time to go home. Dammit. This morning I'm keeping my chin up with one simple thought. Yum yums from Knaresborough. What? In case you have never lived and don't know what a yum yum is it's basically a stretched out doughnut covered in sugar. So what? You can buy them from Asda or Tesco and they're very nice, however the ones from Knaresborough's "Thomas" bakery on the square are extra, super, mega orgasmically nice. The gf and I have travelled the 140 mile round trip from home JUST to get some before now.

RG's sat nav and my Google Maps wants to see us go through Newcastle. I have a better plan. We came through Newcastle-Upon-Tyne earlier this year on our way back from Berwick-Upon-Tweed and Haggerston Castle and on that trip the A19 proved to be as dull as dishwater but simplicity itself to follow. After battling with Edinburgh yesterday it seems the short detour to pick up the A19 is a good idea.

It is. It's easy to find from the Premier Inn near the airport and it's easy for us as a group to follow southbound. It's mostly dual carriageway, practically motorway in all but name. The weather is warming up, there's little breeze and the gf's 125 has no issues flowing with the heavier traffic. It's simple, easy, good riding. It is also tedious to do, such an anticlimax after the gnarlsome delights of Scotland. This is mileage, this is transport, this is get your head down and just do it.

Apart from a fuel stop and a very brief stretch, that's just what we do for 65 miles. The signs for Thirsk promise some kind of relief and when we slow for a junction the gf screams it's relief that she needs! I'd been making "OK?" signals from time to time, she'd been frantically trying to sign that she needs to stop for a pee but I'd read her mad waves as signals that she was loving the ride. Whoops! 

As we roll into the town of Thirsk I spot a motorcycle shop and a convenience store. RG wants chain lube for JR's grinding chain so I pull in and prey the bike shop is friendly and will let the gf use their loo. It takes a little messing around before relief is achieved, afterwards she looks like a much happier lady. RG soaks JR's flagging chain in lube and we all get a little squirt for good measure. Big thanks to Teasdale Motorcycles, it's the simple things that count.

RG stands holding some haribo sweet while the gf stuffs one into her mouth
"Hello little girl, would you like a sweetie?" "Yes please!"

The ride from Thirsk is shorter, more interesting and I imagine considerably more comfortable for the gf. My mouth starts to water in anticipation as the sign suggests Knaresborough is but 4 miles away. The edge of town... the traffic lights... I'm so close I can smell them... I find the turning... I park the bike... I can see the shop! We go in and buy some. I walk outside and I'm dizzy with excitement. 

thomas bakers in knarasborough, just a white fronted shop
The fountain of edible delights!

WHAT! What? Eh? What, you want to dine someplace BEFORE I eat these yum yums? What is up with you people? I'm surrounded by morons, fools, idiots and pillocks. Let me get this straight in my head. You all want to eat some proper food in some sort of cafe or restaurant? You want to do this while there's yum yums right here, before us, in our hands? You want, expect even demand that I WAIT until we've eaten? Nah, this isn't happening. This is a living nightmare. I wave a tearful goodbye to my yum yums as I lock them into my top box. It is a cruel, harsh world.

Admittedly the cafe is good and I feel better for some proper food. As we sit around the table rather than talk to each other like decent civilised human beings we're all tuned into facebook. It seems one of our mutual friends is also somewhere in Knaresborough purely by chance, I guess he's on facebook too rather than talking to his wife. After some confusing text messages and crossed wires I finally find them in the cafe next to ours. Doh! It takes another few minutes before we're all sat outside in the sun drinking more tea and chatting. This time we use words and hand gestures rather than text and emoticons. What are the chances!

MB our friend outside the cafe at knaresborough
Our friend MB " found me."

I guess this is as good an end to the holiday as we could have hoped for, just sitting around outside a cafe having a brew and a chat. There's only 70 more miles until we're home and then that's it, back to reality, back to cramped houses in cramped streets among cramped towns and cities. Oh my goodness me I'm sure going to miss those wide open spaces, those empty roads, those mountains and those lochs. I wonder if there's some Scottish bloke in a tiny bothy twiddling his thumbs, wishing he was surrounded by cars, tower blocks, hustle and bustle? Maybe there is. Maybe we all want to be somewhere else. I wonder, maybe that's what this yearning to travel is all about?

Not Even Scotland The story and first day of our Scottish tour. A scam, some miles, some rain and a hot bath.
Big Miles Through Scotland The second day of the Scotch tour sees us into and through the surprisingly delightful Ayrshire coast and into the Highlands
The Fort William Loop We lucky four take in Dalwhinnie, Fort William, Glencoe and some of the bestest roads you could hope for.
Dawdle To Rannoch Station. Today's tale is of a lazy, slow and peaceful ride along Loch Rannoch.
Forres and The Cairngorms We find the best hospitality in Forres and and a different kind of awesome through the Cairngorms
Soaked In Newcastle It's the first leg of our return trip. We get a cold shoulder then a drenching - and still we're loving it!
Knaresborough And Home Oh dear, it's the last day of our trip. Will there be tears?

Reader's Comments

Pegmonkey said :-
I just hope one day, I can cross the pond and take a ride on the wild side. ;)
1/1/2000 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Eh up Pegmonkey. If you do get here you already know a few folks and we'll all show you around.
1/1/2000 UTC

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