Getting the Right Accent

The Wattmeister has just returned from a recovery training camp in Majorca with the trace of a Spanish accent, and the hint of a Contadoresque fandango on the pedals whenever the road lurches upwards.

However, even as the taxi transports him from City airport back to Muswell Hill there is already a suggestion of Italian lilt in his parlance as a nod to Milan San Remo which takes place this weekend. No doubt there will be a further  metamorphosis over the next couple of weeks in the run up to the Ronde van Vlaanderen in Belgium. Look out for sentences sprinkled with Belgian consonants (potentially messy if unpractised); nutrition consisting of chips with mayonnaise, blond beer and hagelslag (pronounced haagelshlach), and the tendency to make constant references to the fearsome cobbled hellingen (short but steep hills) of Flanders.  This year, Muswell Hill Peloton should be represented by such stars as Pistol and SavilleRowAlex in the sportive which precedes the big race.

Talking of cobbles, Paris-Roubaix features in the racing calendar on 12th April. The Belgian accent will be modified to accommodate some French je ne sais quoi. Topics of conversation will inevitably revolve around the Carrefour de l’Arbre and the Arenberg forest, home to some of the most gruelling sections of the race. The Wattmeisterin can expect to witness the odd Gallic shrug and involuntarily wince from The Wattmeister as the riders career over the humongous cobblestones, risking their their own cobbles.

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