Sunday, March 08, 2009

An evening ride

Evening. God I can't wait for the summer! It is pitch black and freezing cold outside, it's blowing a gale and for some reason the wife thinks it would be good for me to go out on the bike! Perhaps she is trying to claim on the insurance?! Anyhow, I fix the lights on the bike, pump up the tyres, put two layers of clothing on, a face mask and don my silver helmet (the wife says I look scary now!) and precede to step out the door with my trusty road bike.

The cold hits my arms straight away and I realise I am going to have to keep the effort up in order to stay warm. This isn't going to be a long ride....

The car drivers out this evening are a peculiar bunch in that they all seem surprised to see another road user, especially one that has the audacity not to have a petrol motor. The fail to indicate, rev their engines behind me, flash me, shout at me and generally behave in the way I have become accustomed to people behaving to others in this country after several pints of lager and a curry! What a terrible shame that the evening motorist is so intolerant. I wonder what causes these outbursts?

The lack of indicating I can put down to either laziness or just plain ignorance of the rules of the road, also a lack of understanding of how this effects a cyclist, having to slow down especially and then stand up out of the saddle to get going again, loosing an emense amount of speed and momentum etc.

The almost proactive bulling of cyclists however I cannot truly understand. Is this an knee jerk reaction by the motorist when he finds someone doing something that he feels guilty that he isnt? Someone making an effort to keep fit where he just piles on the pounds from the pies and ales? Probably not, but I would feel better if it were this simple. Could it be that there is an undercurrent in this society that simply doesnt like people who are different or cause them to divert from their predesposed route due to this difference?

My theory therefore is that motorists who dislike cyclists do so simply because they need to make the effort to go around them, and unlike a parked car, are doing something that they dont.

Anyway - hit a flipping pot hole on the way back and have probably damaged the bearings on my front wheel - making a bit of a strange sound now. That will be an expensive ride!

Wasnt far - just 15km in 30 mins - not too bad in the dark and on the undulating road. Max speed 41.4km/hr. Probably wont go out in the dark at night again for a while....

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