Blob of jelly
Anyway, I was determined to get back on the LCM (London Commuting Machine for those new to the blog) this morning. The three weeks of inactivity certainly took their toll. I was like a blob of jelly on a bike and found it quite difficult to steer properly. I was (yet again) wearing too many clothes and started boiling pretty quickly. I found myself not really being bothered about overtaking anyone (normally I'm tediously but secretly competitive), and this pretty much applied to pedestrians.
The puncture moment
To add to the general indignity, after only 5 minutes or so along the canal, I felt the familiar sensation of the front wheel becoming unresponsive when steering and a quick look down revealed just what I suspected - the tyre was flat.
|Always carry one of these!|
The kind Brompton man
I would add that I probably looked at least half confident in what I was doing, so there was probably no need. But towards the end, a lovely guy on a Brompton slowed down and asked very nicely if I had everything - I told him I was fine, but thanks - and he cycled off. It made me feel great and brought a smile to my face. Then I realised I was being eaten alive by some really horrid bugs - possibly mosquitoes - and rushed to get through the job and the hell out of there. Guess that slow moving canal water, grassy verges and a sweating cyclist mean paradise for blood-sucking creatures.
Anyway - thought du jour, as they say - is this: even if someone looks like they know what they're doing, it can make all the difference to stop and ask if someone's OK if they're by the road or river with the old bike upside down. Spread that karma now, you know it makes sense.