Is leaving it 18 months before picking right up from where I left off, without offering any explanation, excusable…? I hope so. I will just carry on anyway however.
The very next time I went out riding, I dropped my bike going 30ish miles an hour round a roundabout. I stuffed the rear mech into the rear wheel, bent brake levers, bent the front brake calliper, broke my helmet, scratched my glasses, lost some skin, and melted my shorts and jersey to my leg and arm. I jumped straight up, made sure no one had seen, and then rode the remaining 2 miles home very carefully. My saddle was on the wonk and, to be fair, so was I. My hip was sore, but more importantly I was really shaken up. And the feeling didn’t go away, in fact, I still don’t think it has.
I couldn’t really bring myself to look at the bike, but I did make myself go out for a ride the following weekend. It was a pretty sedate affair, and relatively short, but I did make a point of riding the same stretch of road that I’d come off on. Now, I’ve ridden down that road a lot. It’s one of two quiet routes in and out of the countryside on my side of town. On the way back in, it comes shortly after a Strava Segment that I’d previously had a KOM on. The roundabout however was well after you’ve slowed down, and up until the point, I’d never given it a second thought. But, maybe that was reason why it’s happened. In the crash itself, I’d taken the bike to the left and then as soon as I leaned it to the right I knew that I was coming to come off… and then sure enough I was sliding down the road. So now riding round it a week later I was super cautious. Wary of every stone, every change in texture of the surface of the road, and with what I was doing with the bike. This stretch of road was now not fun, and I wasn’t able to relax (In fact, I’ve struggled to do so whilst riding over the year an a half since). But I was able to ride, and went out again the very next day.
When I got home I put the bike I was riding (the winter bike) back into the spare room. In front of it was my pride and joy, the De Rosa, which I still couldn’t bear to look at. Bits of it we’re facing the wrong way, other bits were bent, others scratched. The frame now creaked, and it didn’t feel right.
What was I going to do…