Every cloud…

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… has a silver lining.

A few months ago, my favourite Uncle died. He was 97, and fit as a fiddle. Our family were already planning his 100th birthday party, and photographing his warm, smiling face as he read out his telegram from the Queen. It’s the least he deserved from her – after serving in North Africa and Italy in the Second World War. But as I’ve got older I’ve learnt that life has a habit of smacking you in the face and not turning out they way you thought. Our Uncle Eric suddenly came down with an infection – a week later he peacefully died in his sleep.

After his exploits in the hot climes of the Mediterranean in the 1940s, Uncle Eric started a few businesses and became pretty successful. Which is why I received a pleasant surprise in the post the other day. He’d left me some money in his will.

I’ve been wondering what to do with it since. Some of it’s gone already. A packed up boiler saw to some of it – right in the middle of this recent arctic snap. Thank goodness we had the spare cash to get hot water again. Cold showers after freezing your proverbials off whilst training doesn’t make a man of you. In fact it shrinks your manhood.

But it hit me the other day. Uncle Eric was always interested in my cycling, my race results and even more interested in my bikes. He had a great appreciation of engineering, how things worked and also speed – driving various vehicles in the War gave him this fascination.

With this in mind, it makes sense to put the money towards what I’ve been lusting after since I set this blog up – a celeste blue Legend HT9.5. I’ve been trying to save the best I can, and was doing OK, but was still a fair way off the required amount. Eric’s money will help me achieve my dream – and will be a fitting eulogy. I’ll make great use of the bike, and every time I set out on a ride with her, I’ll be thinking of Eric – with a smile on my face.

So the next step is ordering the frame. I’ve been wondering which dealer to go and visit, and how to get fitted and measured. Then my wife suggested why don’t I use the money I’d saved so far, to actually go out and visit Marco and the Legend factory. After all, Legend have an open policy, they urge customers to take a look and see how their frames are made. And by all accounts, you can get fitted at the factory by Velo Solutions resident fitting guru, Giuseppe Giannecchini as well. So I can hit them two birds with one stone. A superb idea by my wife.

So first steps are to contact Legend UK and arrange a trip. In the meantime, I’ve got the envious task of deciding on the finish of my HT9.5. I thought I knew what colour and finish I would order. But a spanner has been thrown in my wheels. I’ve recently seen a photo of a dark blue carbon tinted HT7.5, with silver graphics and matt finish. Looks superb. You can see for yourself.

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She’s a stunner. I love the lighter blue highlights. The way it looks like a metallic blue frame at a distance, only to reveal it’s hidden carbon weave when you get close.

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But that gloss celeste still melts my heart.

Decisions, decisions. That’s so typical of Uncle Eric to give me a nice problem.

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