Monday, March 12, 2007

End of Debate

Temperature at departure = 49° F (9° C)

I know, I know, I haven't posted since Wednesday. Sorry, my family has had a lot going on. Anyway, I intended to write about what a wonderful weekend it was (another great ride with Peter on Saturday - nice ride to my Dad's yesterday) but then - this morning. I'll write about the weekend tonight or tomorrow.

So, I've read a lot of different opinions about whether or not to wear a bike helmet. I've worn one since my children started riding bikes, to be a good example. Now, wearing a helmet is a habit. There was one time last fall that I didn't put one on when I left home and I felt so weird riding without it that, a half mile from home, I had to turn around and go get it. Well, in my opinion, the debate is over.

It was a beautiful morning. The pavement was a little damp from a very light, short rain last night. The ride had gone well, I even came across two other bike commuters that I've never seen before. When I got to Founder's Park at Corporate Woods, the loop back towards the creek was a little muddy. Slick mud, not the big piles of mud from the previous week. I really should have gone with my gut reaction and just headed into the office -- but I decided to take the extra 3 mile loop. When I approached the next bridge I started regretting my decision; a long patch of the slick muck. I made it past that to the dry pavement beneath the bridge. Before reaching the other end of the bridge I rang my bell a few times, just in case someone was approaching from the other side; the other end has a sharp, blind turn and short, steep hill. I'm not sure how it happened but I hit another patch of mud and down I went. Smack! I felt my head hit the pavement hard - but, thankfully, the helmet took the whole force of the impact. I also had put on my fingerless gloves for the second time since I've had them. It wasn't cold enough for my big gloves and I just decided the day before to wear these when it was warmer. Glad I did, my palms would have gotten pretty torn up.

So, the entire damage to me seems to be a scraped left knee and a nasty looking knot on my right thigh where I must have landed on a rock, bolt, pedal, something.

Oh, just noticed my jaw. Well, we'll see how it goes. Please, please, please, always wear your helmet. If I hadn't today, I would have been passed out on a blind curve on the path or in the emergency room...

p.s. I'll be fine. I'll post the picture of Peter and I at Starbuck's later.


Noah said...

Yowch! Us JoCo folk are getting beaten up, aren't we?

Doc says without my helmet I'd probably have cracked open my cranium (most likely, I'd be dead) from my wreck. Fortunately I got off with minor damage comparatively speaking. It still sucks to have broken teeth, though.

Heal up soon, and get a new hat before you get back in the saddle.

Warren T said...

I was thinking about you right after it happened. My bumps and scrapes don't come near to what happened to yours. I hope you're doing better.

I didn't have much of a choice about getting back in the saddle; rode it home that afternoon. I'm trying to keep my knees all bendy and stuff...

How long before you're riding again? How does the missus feel about it?

Noah said...

My wife was really, really scared. I don't know how she's going to handle it when I get back on the bike. She was talking about motorcycle helmets and whatnot. The odds of me doing that kind of face plant again are slim to none, and since the truck didn't hit me, I swerved into the curb to avoid it, I think a good portion of the blame rests on my lack of cycling experience. Well, I think this counted as a bucket or two worth of experience.

I see my ENT doctor tomorrow to find out how I'm doing. I'm expecting that when I ask him how long I'm laid up for, he'll have a quick, concise answer for me. I know a cast usually stays on for something like six weeks when you break an arm or a leg. I'm really hoping that I'm not told to stay off the bike until the last week of April, but it's kind of what I'm expecting him to say.