Sunday 11 August 2013

Brown trousers time

Friday night is a bloody awful time to be riding in the city - which is why I always try to get away by about 1645hrs. That's just early enough to avoid the 1700 madness that erupts at the end of every week.

I managed to do that this week - although I was a tiny bit late, so I was hammering it down George St in order to be well clear of town before the full moon type fever took over the minds of most of the drivers in the CBD.

There's a swish hotel at the bottom of George St - it used to be called the Regent. No idea what it's called these days. It has a semi-circular drive way to allow guests to be picked up and dropped off away from the street. As there is a taxi zone right next door, it's a nightmare at any hour of the day - taxi drivers having no regard for cyclists at all.

The lights were green, so I was going for it. And then the usual thing happened - a hire car driver coming in the opposite direction spotted what he thought was a break in the traffic and decided to turn into the hotel driveway across my line of travel. Unfortunately, I was in that break. Either he saw me coming (with my brights lights and flouro vest) and decided it was just too bad for me, or he was blind as a bat. Didn't matter - I was hauling on the anchors pretty hard to avoid going into the side of his car.

One thing going for him was that he was moving fast - so long as he kept going fast into the driveway, I'd be able to go around the back of him without any worries.

Except neither of us had thought about the gutter at the edge of the driveway. His front spoiler slammed into it at speed with a horrible crunch, and he came to an abrupt stop with his car blocking 1 1/2 lanes. I now had no hope of easily getting around him.

Yes, it was brown trousers time.

Thankfully, he only stopped briefly and then started moving again - and it wasn't wet. The combination of spotting him early, braking hard and him getting partly out of my way was just enough to avoid a bike meets cars incident.

I thought about riding into the driveway and giving him a piece of my mind, but there were two things that convinced me to keep cool and keep going. For starters, I didn't wanted to get out of town before I ran into another meat head. The second was that he was driving a Ford, and there is no hope for those types.

1 comment:

kc said...

City bus kills a bicyclist here on average once a month. Most aren't as savvy or quick as you.