Someone rides a cycle to work. I see it every day and am sorely tempted to do it too, but 20km is just way too much. 20km even on a bike leaves me too exhausted to do anything else. And then there’s another 20km back home.
No one’s thrown a bike at me
has a nice one that I’ve been trying to convince him to loan me, and he’s been trying to convince me to buy outright, and we’ve sort of hit a stalemate there.
Now Kiruba and friends announce their having biked all the way from Bangalore to Chennai
. Fuck! I feel more like a bum now.
I had an accident today. Sort of. There’s this intersection on the Outer Ring Road somewhere before Banashankari, near mrinal
’s house (I don’t know what the area is called). This lane crosses it at a weird angle (see illustration), there’s no traffic light, vehicles cross it all the time, and no one uses their indicator because technically they’re going straight. So you’re on the road and you’re overtaking a slowpoke from the right side, which the traffic police take great pains to remind you is the right thing to do, and all should be fine, right? But no! The fellow is not riding down the ring road! He came out of the lane, is crossing the road, didn’t bother to indicate or look out for you, and now you’re headed for a collision course! You thought he was drifting right to overtake the vehicle in front of him, but he continues drifting right in a pattern that fails to register on one accustomed to Indian road sense.
And so I was riding uphill on the road today when this fellow just froze ten feet ahead of me, waiting for traffic to clear so he could cross the remaining half of the road. Not expecting this, I honked, hard, to express my disapproval, and braked, hard, because there was no way to avoid him this close. A car behind me did likewise. The road’s topography being what it is—steep slope uphill going forward or right—my bike lost balance and toppled. It wasn’t bad: there was no damage, I was still standing, and had stopped some two or three feet ahead of this guy, who merely gave me a contemptuous glance and rode away.
But it was fucking annoying. At this very intersection, four years ago, an autorickshaw cut across my path and threw me off balance. These are the only two times I’ve ever had anything resembling an accident on a bike (save the very first day when I was 15, when I had my senses thoroughly hammered into me; but that’s another story). I’ve never had as much as a scratch otherwise.
To have my stellar record tarnished by a quirky intersection is… upsetting.