Ouch! After I blogged about how well I was doing on my bike the other day, I had an accident last night and won’t be cycling for a few days!
I was about three quarters of way home, making good time after the weekend break. I’d reached a downhill stretch and was going about 25 miles per hour when a car pulled out on me.
The uphill traffic was at a standstill and he had been waiting to turn right into into it. He had nowhere to go, but decided to pull out anyway. Either he hadn’t see me or had misjudged my speed — I think the former because had he seen me he would not have mistaken just how fast I was approaching. He pulled out across my lane and then stopped! If he hadn’t stopped I would probably have made it round the back of him. But because he had nowhere to go he had to stop.
I managed to yell a choice word or two (!) before I had to concentrate on trying to stop before I hit him and stay upright. I managed to get into a sideways slide which slowed me pretty fast, but then I must have hit a pothole or ridge. The next thing I knew I was sailing through the air with my legs somewhere above my head. Not where they should be at all!
This was a first for me; I’ve fallen off my bike several times before but I’ve never flipped over the top. Thankfully I had the wherewithal — and the time — to choose to stretch out and roll sideways when I hit the ground. I’m really glad I didn’t hit my head at all. That’s the most scary thing about cycling: even though I wear a helmet, I don’t expect it to help in the worst of circumstances.
Several people stopped and offered help which was great. The guy who pulled out on me was nowhere to be seen. He’d driven off (presumably up the wrong side of the road) and no one had been able to get his registration number. I must thank the lady who gave me a pack of tissues, and the nearby security guard who let me use his first aid kit to clean myself up, and the three other people who stopped to check I was OK.
I had a deep graze on my left knee, a painful bruise on my left hip and a twinge in my right wrist. Still, the bike was OK and I managed to cycle the rest of the way home.
By the time I got home though my wrist was quite painful. I decided I needed it checked. Jan drove me up to the local A&E department but had to leave me there: Jamie needed picking up from Brownies. It wasn’t too busy; I think I only waited about 10 minutes for my first consultation then about 15 minutes to see a doctor. I had three X-Rays during which the radiologist managed to find the most painful position for my wrist! I really whimpered like a baby! Luckily nothing was broken, though it did feel like it. They patched me up, fitted a tubular bandage to support my wrist, and sent me on my way. Steve picked me up and took me back home.
When I woke this morning my knee and hip were both stiff and my right hand was pretty much unusable. I decided to take a day or two off work. Right now, I’m glad I’m left handed — I can at least manage some things though I’m reduced to pecking at the keyboard with one hand ever-so-slow-ly.
I was lucky really, it could have been a lot worse. I don’t expect to be off my bike too long.
Update: 21/04/2005 I uploaded a quick photo of my wounded knee 🙂