RSF feature in 'Cranked' Magazine
There are times in life when you feel, with an unmistakable sinking feeling somewhere in the bottom corner of your stomach, that you're being clocked as an Outsider. Turning up to a funeral wearing the obligatory funereal black, only to discover that everyone else is in informal summery garb. Being the only one in the car park whose bike is more expensive than the car you've just taken it out of.
Or, in this particular case, failing to order pie at the pub lunch stop.
To be fair to my Rough Stuff Fellowship ride companions, their reaction to my pint of Coke and ham salad baguette – a combo which I thought at the time was a good choice of mid-ride re-fuel – was confined to a bit of light joshing and, maybe, a suggestion that it was a simple reflection of my geographical location (“southern softie!”, delivered with a grin). But still. Everyone else, to a (wo)man, was refuelling with pie. Lots of pie. With mountains of chips. And gravy. And a pint (or two, of real ale) to wash it down.
The menu, it turned out, was pie-heavy. And that was a deliberate choice. Most of the group had probably been eagerly anticipating their pies all morning. I could hardly have felt more limp-wristed if I'd turned up in a working men's pub and ordered a gin and diet tonic.
The odd thing was, it didn't matter.
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© Seb Rogers / Cranked 2015