Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Hit by car

I got my settlement cheque this week from the insurance company for my car crash last September.  Anybody who thinks that getting hit is worthwhile because you are offered a fortune is dreaming.  It doesn’t work that way, at least not around here.  I got $500 to cover repairs to the bike, plus a replacement helmet.  For most of my friends, that sounds like a lot for bike repairs, but it’s an expensive racing bike. 
The photo here is the intersection where I got hit.  I was coming down the hill on a nice sunny day, about a half hour into a projected 3-hour ride.  I clocked it some weeks later, and found that I max out around 50 km/h going down this hill.  The driver was headed the opposite direction, and turned left at the corner, right into my path.  I hit the brakes, then hit the car.  Striking the right front fender, I flew over the hood, landing on the road by the stop sign.  I was wearing my spandex bib shorts and replica US Postal jersey, so I think I made a good impression as I went past her windshield.  I don’t have a clear recollection of what happened to the bike, but I think it followed me up and over the car.  Bystanders called 911, and in moments I had police, ambulance, and fire truck support.  I hit the pavement largely with my left hip and temple (leaving a ding in the helmet). 
The wheels of the bike looked okay, but were out of true enough to not spin.  I phoned home for a pickup.  I didn’t let on what had happened, since I know how my wife tends to worry.  I remember how that turned out in Slaughterhouse Five.  I signed a waiver for the medical attendants indicating that I was declining the offer to go to hospital.  Nothing was broken, although my right thumb was bleeding and sore.  My guess is that I clenched the handlebars, and when they whipped around, that digit got hyperextended.   The thumb hasn’t worked the same since.  The range of motion is drastically reduced, so that I can’t fold it in against the palm. 
I had the handlebars taped in bright blue.  I like it much better than the original white.  They saved the wheels.  The rims weren’t damaged and just needed a regular trueing operation.  A big thank you goes to the folks at MultiSport Zone.  Thank you as well to the Woodstock emergency services personnel. 

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