Imagine if you will being able to jump on your bicycle completely naked and ride around a beautifully vibrant town like Brighton. With hundreds and hundreds of other like minded naked cyclists. Well at last we finally got to do that very thing on a cloudy Sunday afternoon in June! Having never done a WNBR event before Molly and i really didn’t know what to expect. Obviously we’d seen plenty of photos online from previous years but they don’t give a true sense of just how fantastic this event really is.
We arrived at the Level on Union Road in Brighton at around half past ten, early enough to attend the stewards meeting in the bike compound area. The team were looking for volunteers to help steward and marshal the compound and then the actual ride itself. As it was our first time we didn’t want to get too involved. It seemed a much better idea to try and savour the event taking in the sights and sounds and emotions of the eight mile course winding through the streets and lanes of this wonderful seaside setting. We did however volunteer to help decorate the rides recovery vehicle with flags and banners. The vehicle was there to help any riders who had any bike or health problems along the way.
Next it was time to prepare our water bottles for the journey but rather than just filling up with water we decided to treat ourselves to a pleasant summery mix of Pimms and lemonade. It seemed rude not to really. People were starting to trickle into the compound at this point and clothes were starting to be shed. Molly had nipped off to the loo so i thought i should go for it and lose my shorts and t shirt. As soon as she came back from the toilets Molly decided to brave it too so at last we were both stood in our birthday suits in the middle of a public park!
But we weren’t going to stay completely nude for long, we came armed with our flowery festival hats and two very pink feather boas to give us a bit of colour and glamour. And of course we rather fancied donning ourselves in a bit of body paint. I had purchased some body painting pens online so we used these to draw various slogans and patterns. Although these pens didn’t really make much impression on Mols back as she is rather heavily tattooed in that area. But luckily the organisers had laid on body painting artists with better materials than us and a kind gentleman did a far superior job of adding some colour to Mols back.
And now that so many of us were undressed and dolled up it seemed time for people to start taking photographs. Earlier at the stewards meeting the organisers had asked us all to watch out for any photographers that were possibly behaving in an inappropriate manner, shoving cameras into peoples faces or generally taking close up photos without permission. I have to say that all the photographers we encountered in the compound were very polite and always asked before snapping away. Molly even decided to pose with a friendly girl who looked resplendent in her awesome native American Indian costume. They certainly made an impressive couple!
We did meet some very nice people in the compound. It certainly was an excellent atmosphere. There was a real feeling of camaraderie even though we had never met any of our fellow cyclists before. And we were both most surprised to be recognised by three different followers of our blog and Twitter feed. It was great to chat to them and it’s a really good feeling knowing that people actually read our musings and enjoy our photos too.
As the kick off time for the ride approached the excitement started to grow and the general good vibe in the compound became palpable. We rescued our bikes, complete with funky windmills on the handlebars and waited for the opening of the surrounding screen exit which would allow us to make our way out into the park and off into the town itself.
But i will report on that part of the adventure in our next post about the incredible Brighton World Naked Bike Ride 2017.