There are various problems in dating a cyclist.
The one that often drives me to distraction is their inability to understand that, to "normal people" (and by that, I mean anyone who doesn't go to bed dreaming of carbon), there are appropriate times and places for cycling in their lives. And not-so-appropriate times and places.
OK, so I admit I am not a particularly patient person (understatement), but I defy Mother Theresa not to have wanted to chuck the bike out the window at some point in the last 2.5 years.
I imagine that living with a cyclist is perhaps like living with a toddler - a particularly large, messy toddler who won't eat their vegetables, would have a tantrum if they didn't get to play with their favourite toy and leave you constantly walking 3 steps behind them, clearing up the trail of destruction they leave in their wake.
"Oh my god, I'm so sick of picking up your sh**!" is the most common phrase out of my mouth on normal sleep-deprived mornings.
To the Frenchman:
- a bedroom is the correct place to store a bike
(what did I say about a love triangle?)
- the sofa is the obvious place to discard sweaty lycra
(because everyone loves the smell of stale sweat when they eat their dinner)
- the lounge is the perfect place for bike pumps, tool kits and chamois cream
(X-Factor has nothing on the 'tweak the bike' show)
- any available surface is the ideal spot for half eaten cereal bars and empty energy drink bottles
(Note to self: do NOT buy the chocolate ones again, they melt in his team jersey…and who do you think has to try and wash that afterwards?!)
- 6.30am on a Monday morning is the best time to wake up your partner and discuss this week's training schedule
(oh, I wish I was joking)
- any romantic dinner is the time to discuss their competitor's performance in the last race
(don't mistake that fiery look in his eyes for passion- he's thinking about how to beat the other guy, not what knickers you're wearing)
- any free time on a weekend is the ideal opportunity to search for that extra bike gadget
(after a while you learn to realise this isn't "the last thing I need, honest")
and, my particular favourite from the other night:
- 11pm is the perfect time to start fixing new pedals on a bike, when he's going away on business at 5am in the morning
"I'm guessing I'm doing the tidying up and packing again right?"
Yep, you really don't need kids to realise you turn into your mother sooner or later.
p.s - The Frenchman is raising money for leukaemia research through his race, a cause very dear to his heart - so if you read this, please, please, please sponsor him at http://laurettefugain.alvarum.net/teamrondy2011. Every little helps.
It'll make it worthwhile living with my toddler ;-)