If there was an award for the nicest man ever, Jan De Jonge of People, Business, Psychology would 100% win that.
Monday 14th December, a normal day by all accounts. The Bath uni Basil Spence project was behind us, so it was time to crack on with some Christmas fitness, after all, the treats are earned. My Achilles was up to 80% so I decided to see what my legs had got and start with a cheeky 90k.
11am and I set out, chilly but dry, ready for a decent few hours in the chair. 55km down and I got a flat. Questions on winter tires, specialized armadillos letting me down, nonetheless armed with 2 spares and 3 gas canisters I was ready for the job. So I changed the tire and set back out on the job.
1.3km down the road, and it popped again. After 4,500km without a flat, I wasn’t convinced by this coincidence! So after rigorously checking the inside of the tire for the 4th time I put in my final spare tube. Popping as the gas canister inflated it, I was a stranded man.
So what to do. 50km from Bath and 15km from the nearest bike shop. Not allowed to run due to the Achilles, I was in serious trouble.
Stuck outside a row of terraced houses, I decided to try my luck on the doors. No answer to the first door, a lovely elderly lady at the second that unfortunately couldn’t help. As they say third time lucky, and that’s when I met Jan.
Unfortunately unable to provide a new inner tube, the worlds kindest man offered to drive me the 15km to Devizes, to find a bike shop for a new tire and inner tube.
Slightly taken aback by the offer i didn’t know what to say, but in true Christmas spirit Jan drove me to Devizes where I was kindly provided with a spare tire for the remainder of the journey home before sun set.
I can’t thank Jan enough for his kind deed that day! I’d have had to spend almost £100 on taxis or walk until the following morning! I was thoroughly touched by his sentiment. Not many people would have carried out the deed he did that day, I’ll always remember his help! And definitely help any others I find in a situation like mine.
Its days like this that restore my faith in the human spirit.