Settling into my eyrie … and a cycle ride

Nearly two weeks since I last posted, let’s see if I can get to manage at least one a week from here on.  It’s been very much a settling in period.  It’s the summer season up here so some shops are open in Plagne Centre, the hub bit of the ski resort about 2km (and 114m of vertical drop/climb) below me and the little SPAR supermarket is open up here in Aime2000 as well as the slightly bigger one in Plagne Centre.  This means I can get good cheese and charcuterie from the cremerie/charcuterie in Plagne Centre and good bread and patisserie from the boulangerie/patisserie just opposite that. That’ll all finish at the end of August so I’m enjoying it while I can and also getting out on Cerise really in exercise mode, i.e. flying down the hairpins and crawling back up.  I’m pleased with how much the distance has increased day on day but also that I’m still keeping it fun. 

On that note, for anyone who has a bit over 11 minutes to spare, and wants a change from the speeded up motion of the timelapse videos, here is about 8km down the hairpins (to the bottom of the Olympic bobsleigh course here, la Piste de Bob in French, for anyone who knows La Plagne).

What I’ve said on the vimeo annotation about this is:

This is 11 minutes and 5 seconds of the descent down the main road from where I’m living in Aime2000 to the rather arbitrary point at which I decided that was enough for one day, i.e. enough of a climb back up! It’s a very juddery video, I’ll try mounting the camera on me rather than the handlebars at some point. I also suspect it’s scary for those of a gentle disposition. Be reassured, I’m too old to want road rash and Cerise has superb brakes and great tyres, the road was dry and visibility perfect: essentially zero risk but some fun and adrenaline! We hit 60kph going down. I crawled back up to Plagne Centre, not even all the way back to Aime2000 (stopped for good bread!) in 50 minutes of heart pumping hard but very satisfying pedalling. I can’t do this in South London! 

Hm, this is interesting, the cheap helmetcam device I actually bought for skiing is quite high resolution, more so than the old ‘phone that does the timelapse videos, so vimeo seems to offer different resolutions:
High def (mp4, 1280×720)
Standard def (mp4, 960×540)
Standard def (mp4, 640×360)

Hm, interesting.  The resolution is, surprise, surprise, noticeably better on my laptop in the “high def” than the other two, pretty much as you’d expect from those pixel counts (1280×720 = 921,600 pixels,  960×540 = 518,400 and 640×360 = 230,400 so the high definition is about 1.8x the resolution of the middling definition and 4x that of the lowest).  However, the high definition is clearly requiring a throughput at the upper end of what my pretty slow broadband up here can handle as there was a “spinner” on the image I think saying it couldn’t build many frames into buffer.  It did seem to run though.  If you have reasonable broadband, you might want to start with that but give it up if it’s stopping and starting and move down to lower.

Anyone now why vimeo calls two quite different definitions “standard”?!

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