I have nearly totaled 200 miles into my bike to work challenge this month.
While I am incredibly pleased with myself I’m feeling rather deflated
The good points to remember are;
- I have lost weight
- I have more energy
- My libido has returned, no more on that (no apologies)
- My legs have started to firm up
Really enjoying the ride in despite the dodgy junction I have to cross
Down sides are
- I flop into a knacked state a few hours after returning home
- I’ve spent a lot of money on turn signal gadgets after my 3 bridges run in. (anything to stay safe)
- Broken my go Pro Camera case
- Still not really enjoying the ride home
- In constant fear of any negativity directed towards me for my choice in transport.
Sadly there has been another fatality of a pedestrian by cyclist. This happened in London on Oxford Road. Details are unknown but there is a lot of hate being projected already.
The closest I came to running down a pedestrian was in Southsea. He stepped out behind a parked van, I did not see him coming, he was a shocked as me to find me there. As I ride with my breaks covered at all times I was able to react and stop with my rear wheel rising ever so slightly in the air there was no time to look my shoulder to swerve out to avoid him.
As I stood there recovering and pleased that we were both OK, he shouted at me for riding too close to the cars. Which I probably was, and after a recent car dooring he was probably right, but having to ride out in the road and block the Southsea traffic and getting shouted was not worth it either.
I shouted back at him saying that if I did that he would be more than likely be shouting at me for ridding in the middle of the road.
As I shouted this in a state of shock and a bit miffed as he was to blame as much as I was he replied with;
I couldn’t be bothered so I just went home more aware of pedestrians than I ever was.
I am lucky in a way as my commute is off road and the bits on the road I have a nice clear view of any pedestrians and like to think that I can anticipate any smartphone zombies.
I have excellent footage of such an example, sadly this was not a smart phone zombie this was a mum with a pram, why she made the decision not to cross at the designated crossing with a young one in tow is beyond me, despite this she did it safely and found her opportunity once the last car had passed but she failed to see me.
As I saw her before she saw me I was already slowing down to let her cross and bump the pram up the steep kerb.
Did I shout at her? No
Was I angry at her? No
Just like when riding the motorbike, assume they haven’t seen you and adjust speed and position accordingly.
This sort of situation in a different environment such as let’s say Oxford Street I can imagine is complexly different. My experience as a pedestrian in such a location as Oxford street is packed in 4 abreast normally stuck behind a tourist who is not too sure what they want to achieve that day or even worse a smart phone zombie.
If I was on a bike on a road it would be extremely difficult to gauge if someone was going to step out on me.
My concentration would also be on the very erratic movements of the uber in front of me and more than the bus behind me
Because of the bus and the taxis I may find myself pushed further into the kerb if there is not infrastructure for cycles making it even more harder to react in the event of someone stepping out from a thick crowd at point blank.
But my London riding is limited. What little I have done has been on cycle routes and cycle super highways which are brilliant.
One I was on I was a bit worried when I found that it took me in between a bus stop and a pavement.
Of course at the time a bus was at said stop. What comes out of stopped bus. Passengers eager to progress there journey. Anticipating some walking out, none did, both the local users and experienced anticipating rider were both away and we passed each other without any issues and plenty of smiles.
I take my motorbike philosophy with me on my cycle. Ride for everyone else. Arrive alive.