When out riding, some people have a favourite cake stop or coffee stop or, for the hardcore and borderline alcoholics, a favourite pub stop, but, for me, I have a favourite bin stop.
I don’t like carrying the remains of energy gels around in my back pocket because the pocket just fills with leftover gels until it feels like diving into high sugar swamp every time you reach in for another. Urrghh!
That’s why I have a bin stop. Somewhere I can stop and have a gel and immediately throw it into a bin. My soggy pocket problems is solved!
My favourite bin stop is at Whitelee Windfarm, near Eaglesham. It’s the highest point of one of my usual routes and a good point to stop and have a gel before carrying on. Here it is:
Normally I wouldn’t tell anyone that I had a favourite bin stop for the same reason I wouldn’t tell you my preferred technique to cut my toe nails, how I clean my ears or the satisfaction I might get from a pick of my nose. There’s some things you just keep to yourself – and not even your nearest and dearest know that the real reason you’re smiling is that you managed to extract an entire bogey in one go with just a deft flick of an expertly judged fingernail.
But this photo is special. And tragic. In fact it should be on a clickbait internet link headed “Seconds from disaster! You won’t believe what happened next – number 8 will blow your mind!”. And, when you click on the link, there’ll be a photo of this bin and this energy gel and then a simple explanation that just after I opened this gel – a ZipVit – I got back home, went to the ZipVit website and discovered… tragically…
… they don’t make them anymore!!!!!!!
I’ve been buying Zipvit for 10 years. And I know it’s been 10 years because they sponsored the first Etape Caledonia and I had my first ZipVit at the footstop there. And this year was the tenth anniversary of the Etape. And now, umpteen ZipVits latest, boxes and boxes of the banana flavor (my favourite), it looks like they only make one flavoured gel and they’ve stopped making energy bars all together.
But what do I do now? I’ve used the same bars and gels for 10 years. I have one halfway through a bike ride. I have a bar after swimming on a Wednesday morning. If I had any more ZipVit, I’d turn into one. Which would be doubly tragic as I’d propably eat myself because I was so tasty.
Instead, I’ll need to find a new gel that I can eat and eat and eat and know that it won’t be too sweet or too sour or too thin or too thick or to chalky or to smooth. Where do I turn now?
And then I remember, I’ve written about ZipVit before. I know who can help me. I can write to Sam! And if you don’t know who Sam is then she’s definitely a real person and she definitely does exist as I’ve written about her before: Sam The ZipVit Packer.
So, phew, crisis averted. Sam will help!