Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Now I Feel Like a REAL Bicyclist

as a result of having my first bicycle crash (at least in a very long time). And, maybe "crash" is a bit more dramatic than the accident warranted. I had an up close and personal meeting with the pavement this afternoon. Since I started riding again on a somewhat regular basis, I've wondered if I was going to be able to avoid a fall. In the main, I ride pretty slowly and cautiously, so it didn't seem to be terribly likely.

But, I believe somewhere in Bicycling 101, they tell you not to try to cross streetcar tracks at an angle. Duh. It's not like I don't know this rule. I regularly have to cross railroad tracks to get to the path along the river and always am careful to cross as close as I can to a 90 degree angle. Today, I was riding down to the south waterfront area on the west side of the river. Had gotten as far as the Spaghetti Factory restaurant and was looking to figure out where I could turn to head back. In hind sight, I know that I should have gone one more block and would probably have been just fine. But, instead, I turned on the same block that the streetcar turns down there. And, just about the time, I was figuring out that there was no place for the bike to ride, I went flying. Ouch! Double ouch! (and a lot of other words that I need to leave out in case Mom reads my blog.) Sad to say, it was my own darn fault, no one else I can blame!

I was, in fact, very lucky in two ways. One is that I really wasn't hurt in any significant way - painful, yes, but not serious. And the other is the number of people who came to offer help. I was so impressed. One woman who was just walking by, came over quickly and helped by getting my bike out of the way. (I was a bit concerned because I was sprawled across the tracks and not feeling ready to move any too quickly.) Another woman came out of a business across the street and offered bandaids or other first aid paraphernalia. A shuttle bus driver stopped and asked if I needed help. The business across the street was "Paradym Events" and, as it turns out, the kind folks there took great care of me - fixed my handlebars so I could actually ride the bike again (had the tools and the knowledge to take care of that), gave me alcohol wipes for all the scrapes (did I say Ouch?!) and water. How great that there are people who will take time to do things like that. So, as much as I would like to whine, I do feel quite fortunate.

I'd love to show photos of my injuries, as some of my blogging sisters and others like to do. But this is a high-class blog - none of that blood and guts stuff. And Catherine would be grossed out. Nevermind that, if there were pictures of my "injuries", I'm afraid there would be a lot of guffawing out there amongst the real athletes. In addition, right after I got home, I needed to drive to go pick up our CSA share. Another woman came in for her produce with a serious black eye and bruises on her face around her eye - saying she'd had a recent bike accident. She'd even had a concussion. So, my tale was a lot less glamorous to tell. (Didn't ask her if she was wearing a helmet.)

Grady is offering zero sympathy, for some reason. I just mention this in a blatant appeal for words of sympathy from blog readers. :)
(Well, in the interest of fairness, I guess I should add that, after I rode a bit less than half way back home, and things were starting to hurt quite a bit, I called him and he did come and pick me up. So maybe he didn't feel any additional words of sympathy were required.)

Instead of unpleasant photos of my arm and knee, I'll offer instead a picture of one of the herbs from our CSA share today - borage. Another new adventure in cooking.


Dale said...

Oh, ouch! Lots of sympathy here. I don't like that kind of intimacy with pavement at all.

ckw said...

oh-poor dear-i have empathy-bikes can be brutal-i think of you out there riding around and have even told some peeps about how you are out there- in the city- riding around-crazy!
but i am glad you are ok-it does hurt!
and what lovely borage-it's so good - i planted some when we lived in vancouver and you can eat the flowers-taste like cucumber-
take care and i would give you a "booboo" hug if i was there!

Ann said...

we want photos ! and not of those vegetables. :)

just joshing you, joan. hope all injuries heal quickly. the bike shop should be able to tell quickly if something needs fixing, a full tune up is gonna oil and lube, and stuff you prob. don't need yet. but it 's good to have them look at the brakes and the shifters, and tires.

Anonymous said...

I KNEW exercise was BAD for you!!! Really, a trip to Mexico would do you bien!! I am so grateful to hear that it was not worse then it could have been. But you really do have my sympathies...I hurt just thinking about it! Traci