Andy Collins column: Get on your bike! I won't be giving up my lockdown online shopping addiction!

So a question for you my lovely reader as we can’t go out now and do what we do to keep ourselves entertained, it seems according to a survey that we talked about on my radio show (BBC 3CR) last week that a majority of us have turned to online shopping to get our kicks and I'm definitely guilty as charged!
Andy Collins in his biking gearAndy Collins in his biking gear
Andy Collins in his biking gear

So whats been your maddest, weirdest, do I really need that purchase you have made during lockdown?

Be it small, big, or that you brought what comment of madness! And then trying to explain to your other half why you needed it!

Please do tell, no judging here I promise!

One of the many, many online purchases made by Andy Collins during the lockdownOne of the many, many online purchases made by Andy Collins during the lockdown
One of the many, many online purchases made by Andy Collins during the lockdown

Saying that If I was to list my guilty purchases this would have to be a five page pullout piece in this paper be it a slow cooker, a four tier steamer, a left handed screwdriver, heated battery socks, even two hand carved from stone five foot lions!

I cant stop clicking and buying, it's got so bad the delivery driver has his own key to my front door and thanks to me there is now a cardboard packaging shortage, so trust me you are not alone!

One of my better judged purchases has been a mountain bike a hybrid seven speeder (thats means thin wheels to you and I).

I have got to say the cycling bug has really hit me during lockdown, my last bike was a purple chopper from 1978!

One of the many, many online purchases made by Andy Collins during the lockdownOne of the many, many online purchases made by Andy Collins during the lockdown
One of the many, many online purchases made by Andy Collins during the lockdown

I started off just going for maybe a mile or two once or twice a week, now I'm out every day no less than 10 miles daily and I love it.

I bought all the gear, the helmet. high vis jacket, lights, a cycling bag for my phone too.

In fact I've now spent more on accessories than what the bike cost me, although I do draw the line at Lycra...

If you have not done it, and I will say its good for running /walking as well as cycling, the Waddesdon greenway is amazing now!

Yes I know I may be late to the party on this one, but seriously it is blooming brilliant.

It starts at the Aylesbury Vale Parkway station (just behind the covid testing station) and then you are off on your way to Waddesdon Manor!

My only gripe is the journey to get there is very stressful and dangerous, especially if you are coming from the other side of town on a bike, I so blooming wish those in charge could link it all up throughout the town.

Like I said I'm new to this cycling world, and yes before I become hooked I was a car driver who would get the hump with the Lycra maffia too acting like they owned the roads, but seriously guys and girls, having now experienced both worlds can we all please get on and be respectful of each other?

Saying that if I had a pound for every time I get a tutt and a shake of the head from a pedestrian when I'm on the pavement I would be a rich man, and don’t get me started on the electric scooter brigade!

Anyway, please do take this opportunity while the roads are very quiet to get out there and explore the beautiful countryside we live in.

I cycled to Potten End and Berkhampstead this weekend, it was truly stunning.

Saying that, it nearly killed me, not the cars on the road but the distance! I had to get a taxi back with the bike on the roof!

Before I go I just want to wish the wonderful Hayley O'Keeffe (the boss lady of this paper ) all the very best in her new job and adventure!

She leaves this week.

I must admit I thought she was mad when she offered me this job as one of the feature writers for this paper, I remember saying to her on that day she called me Hayley I said 'I cant spell, my grammar is terrible and I'm a great believer in not using full stops' she was like don’t worry about all of that, what matters to me is that you're a local person who loves this town and is vey passionate and supportive about the people and business, and I want that in my paper and it's true I am even the nutters on the electric scooters!

With her guidance and encouragement I've really enjoyed my experience doing this, so thank you so much Hayley good luck and to the new boss taking over, would this be a good time to talk about a pay rise?!

Love you!

Andy xx