This has been... not so great a week for cycling. My troubles started on Wednesday morning, when I decided to bike to work despite it being a cool thirteen degrees out. Cold weather doesn't bother me any when I'm on the bike because I heat up like a motor (this is probably also the case for you), but it sure did bother my bike! The back wheel froze up causing me to skid. I tried everything to unfreeze it, including loosening the brake pads and attempting to unlock the quick-release back wheel, but it remained frozen until I reluctantly dragged it onto the train, at which point it heated up enough to spin. I resolved not to ride anymore if it's under twenty degrees.
On Thursday, though, it was a bike-approved thirty-five degrees when I set out, so no problems, right? WRONG! I normally take the Fallsway to work, a gently down-sloping back road with almost no traffic and no stoplights, which runs alongside the Jones Falls. Scenery-wise, it is very pretty and a great way to spend half my commute. The Fallsway's upsides are also its downsides, though, since there was a thin sheen of ice on it that hadn't been melted away from the crush and heat of cars. And when I swerved to avoid that ice, there was an invisible layer of ice just to its left.
So, I fell off my bike, for the first time since I was a kid probably. I ruined my pants, removed the top layer of my knee, and was late to work again. I had no idea what was going on for like two minutes, at which point I figured, oh crap, better get the bike out of the road before someone hits it (hey, I told you that road never gets traffic). At that point a friendly motorist asked if I needed any help, but I didn't want to take a ride from a dude and I was only three minutes from my house, so I painfully pedaled back and took the train to work. Hello again, MTA! Really really wasn't expecting to see you again so soon.
|Not that epic.|
So basically, the moral is, if life kicks you once, get back up and do what you want to do. If life kicks you twice in two days, well... still do that. Or maybe the moral is that my impatience will someday be the death of me!
(P.S. The fact that the Fallsway is in such bad condition now makes me a tad leery about the in-progress Jones Falls Bikeway, which I previously wholeheartedly supported. I think I'm going to have to get some reassurance that the lane will be cleaned on a regular basis, or else I'm going to have to ride through the city, traffic or not, at least for the four months out of the year when ice/slush is a possibility.)