For once I'm properly organised, not just with the Foresters stuff but a change of non bike stuff for afterwards too. Let's face it, I'm not known for my organisation so I've surprised myself, anyhow I grabbed my kitbag and headed to the changing rooms.
"I wonder who that girl was?" one voice asked.
"The one who was riding?"
"Well duh, don't you read Radsport? We just got beat by the best junior girl in the country."
"That was her?" another voice joined in, "what's she slumming round here for?"
"I think she lives around Dussel somewhere."
"That wasn't who I meant, the one in the skimpy outfit, far end of the course."
"She had some right knockers on her."
I do not! Well I presume it's me they are talking about.
"You reckon she's someone's sister or girlfriend?"
"Not mine worse luck, wouldn't mind some of that."
I pulled the chain and headed out to the changing room proper, I'd already stripped out of the cheerleading stuff, I mean that would be a dead giveaway in the boys changing room.
"You see that cute blonde?"
"Just after the autobahn?"
"Who could miss her, it was the right place too, and the village is called Titz right?"
Everyone in the changing room laughed at that and I've moved any suspicion away from me - I hope. The cheek of it though, saying I've got big boobs, I thought we settled that the other week.
"You're famous Ron."
"Famous? What do you mean?"
"Some of the guys in there," I indicated the 'Herren' changing room, "they recognised you, there's a bit in Radsport about the Jungere series this week."
"I saw it, but I've not read it yet."
"I've not even seen this week's." I admitted.
We dropped our bags back at the van and headed towards the hall where the HQ was sited.
"Give us your number; I'll get your licence."
"Cheers Drew." she handed me the bit of PVC and I set off for the Kontrolle.
"Forty nine." I offered, handing the woman behind the table the number.
"Ooh our winner, well done Veronike." she stated looking up at me.
"It wasn't," 'me.' I ended to myself.
I was cut off, "bout time some of these lads saw what the fairer sex can do eh?"
I turned on my heel, my very boyish heel and headed back into the hall...
"There you are , kiddo." Dad noted.
"Just fetching Ron's licence." I brandished the bit of plastic.
A screech of the PA system quietened the room and attention turned to the stage about which everyone was gathered. There was the usual thanking of marshals, officials and sponsors before they got to the actual prize giving. Second and third had their moments of fame before Ron was called to the stage to polite cheering from some quarters and more vocal support from the ladies present.
They blathered on for a bit before really getting down to the gritty.
“And winner of the Henryck Lövenich Cup for 2005, Veronike Grönberg!”
Dad made sure of some photographic evidence as Ron, with a grin as big as Cheshire hefted the not inconsiderable chunk of silverware aloft.
Twenty minutes later we were heading back towards Dusseldorf on the autobahn.
“So anyway a bit further on, just after the motorway there was some girl cheering at us.”
Ron was giving us the run down on her race, the ‘in the saddle' version.
“Uh huh.” Dad nodded.
“So like a few of the lads were obviously keen to get a good look, I'm not that way inclined.” She chuckled.
“She was a bit of a looker then?”
Well I had to say something.
“I guess, if you're into short busty blondes.” She poked her tongue out at me.
“So when did the break go?” Dad called back.
“At the end of the lap. The girl was there again when we went through again; the lads were all gaping at her.”
“She naked or something?” Dad enquired.
“Nah, she was dressed like one of those cheerleaders? You know with pom poms and stuff.”
“Strange.” Dad allowed.
“So anyway that's when I got the idea.”
“Yeah to use her as a distraction when I made my move, I mean she'd been there for two laps, she'd most likely be there next time round.”
“My kind of thinking.” I noted.
“So anyhow after we passed you next time, I got ready to go, the lads weren't really working together at all.”
“The chasers were gaining on you that time through.” Dad put in.
“I had my fingers crossed she'd be up to her antics again and she was, leaping about, waving her arms, the lads slowed up for a better look, I took my chance and went for it.”
“So this girl was unwittingly the catalyst to your escape?” I suggested.
“She did help a bit.” Ron agreed, poking me in the ribs.
“You took a chance going with forty K still to go.” Dad mentioned.
“I had to give it a shot.”
“She did win Dad.” I added.
“Indeed she did, did you see this girl Drew?”
“Wish I had, sounds like a right little vixen.” Has he guessed?
“Maybe she'll turn up at other events.” Ron suggested with a smirk.
“I'm sure it was a one off.”
“Probably related to one of the other riders.” Dad mused.
“That's what they were saying in the changing room.” I opined.
“So how far did you ride kiddo?”
“Not sure, I forgot to put the comp on.” I hedged. I mean it was an outright lie but the old man didn't pull me on it.
“What time do your parents get back Roni?”
“Bout six I think.”
“Are we eating today?” I got out just ahead of a rumbling stomach.
“I was thinking maybe we could kill two birds with one stone.”
“Stop at the Neandertal Museum, they've got a restaurant there so we could eat and get some culture?”
“The one near home?” Ron asked.
“There's more than one?” I queried.
“Not as far as I know,” Dad replied, “it would be nice to compare it with the exhibition in Bonn. Okay with you Ron?”
“Sure, we went with school a couple of years ago, but you know how school trips are.”
By now we were crossing the Rhein, the sun more fully out causing a light mist to shroud the land adjacent to the huge waterway. Ron kept looking at me, giving me weird looks before breaking out into giggles.
“Everything alright back there?”
“Sure , Herr Bond.”
I could see Dad's puzzled expression in the mirror; well I'm not gonna say anything am I?
Dad swung the bus into the car park, already quite full of cars – after all it is one of the top tourist thingies in these parts.
“Urgh, that's better.” Ron stated as she stretched to get rid of a kink or two.
“Come on Champeen, my stomachs rumbling.” I gave her short ponytail a quick tug.
I darted around the Mercedes and came face to face with like the biggest damn cow thing I've ever seen.
“Magnificent eh?” Dad mentioned.
“What is it?”
“That I do know,” Ron stated as she grabbed me from behind, “that , my little elf, is a Bos primigenius or to you an Aurochs.”
“I'm impressed.” Dad announced.
“We studied them in biology last semester; strictly speaking these are Heck cattle which were bred last century to resemble Aurochs, it's all genetics and stuff.”
“I didn't know you were into that stuff.” I stated.
“I'm not really but I need to take biology to study veterinary medicine at uni.”
“And there's me thinking you're just a pretty face!”
“Break it up you two, even my stomach's grumbling now, let's go eat.”
We left the huge cow bull thing and headed across the road to the sleek steel museum.
“Das weisse Gold der Kelten.“ I read off the poster.
“Sounds interesting,“ Dad mentioned, “food first tho'.“
The food wasn't exactly what I 'd hoped for, no Aurochs burgers or Mammoth steaks on the menu, we ended up with a bowl of potato and veg soup and a slice of, admittedly very good, chocolate cake.
We did the museum and exhibition afterwards and clearly this place is geared up for like pre teen school visits, buttons to push and stuff to pick up. I could tell Dad was a bit disapointed but I guess the days of serious museums are gone, you have to supply what your paying audience want.
The special exhibition, the Celtic Gold thing was much better, my turn to show some knowledge! It was actually about Celtic salt mining and stuff down near Salzburg (theres a connection there!) and Herr Ansbacher was on about this when we were doing stuff on the spread of wealth in Medieval Europe.
It was pretty cool, there was stuff found in mines near Bertchesgaden as well as burial stuff that the experts reckon had its source in the wealth generated by salt. And here we are now with experts telling us to cut it out of our diet – so like humanity for thousands of years has needed the stuff and now suddenly we don't – go figure!
“You guys want to go down to the Discovery Site?“
“I'll take a raincheck.“
“Me too Herr Bond.“ Ron added.
“I won't be long, keep out of mischief, please?“
“Yes Dad, er keys?“
He tossed the van keys to me, he headed off on his walk, Ron and I across the road to the car park.
“So, Gaby Bond, just what was that about earlier?“
to be continued....
© Maddy Bell 09.11.2011