Friday, 13 January 2012

One Year

(Warning - contains roadkill)

One year ago today, I was in an ambulance.

One year ago today, I was in shock.

One year ago today, I was slightly broken.

What better way to tempt fate than to ride after work. On Friday 13th. On the first icy day of this winter.

The initial signs weren't good. A freshly killed badger, at the spot where I try to look out for live ones. Lying in the road like some kind of countryside-mafia warning: "ride tonight and you'll end up like this". I'm normally fine with roadkill but this was in the centre of the tarmac, blood still wet, teeth bared. I'm cringing now thinking about it. It ranks alongside the exploded deer in my gruesome night-ride discoveries.

Up next, a dead squirrel. Less icky and thankfully off the side of the road.

My rear light started to misbehave. I thought the battery was failing, but performing the IT-guy ritual got it going again. Turn it off. Turn it back on. Let there be (red flashing) light.

I felt wobbly. Treatment - strawberry yoghurt Torq gel. Exactly like the gel I took while being assessed by the paramedics. Exactly one year on...

My main light battery indicator turns to red. Red = 25% left. That's only... two and a half hours on medium. That's probably going to be plenty for the thirty minute ride home, barring any accidents, mechanicals or incidents.

Then came the truck, the dirty construction truck, passing where it shouldn't, passing very close... but not close enough.

And finally... home.

Now, I know what you're thinking - that was an anticlimax. Well, as I climbed the stairs... up

...up

...up

... I noticed my toes were quite cold. Nasty.

You know, if you'd told me a year ago that in a year's time I'd be riding normally, on my usual routes, on a new bike, I'd have replied "yeah, probably". Screw you Friday 13th!
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