Friday, 12 March 2010

One incident, two perspectives....

Petronella Wyatt-style:

This morning a woman was nearly hit by cyclist in Shpeherd's Bush.

She was innocently crossing the road when a lycra-clad lout going at reckless speed appeared from nowhere and nearly mowed her down. She barely stopped before shouting abuse and pedalling away with absolutely no regard for the trauma of the victim.

Now, I tried cycling in London and was rubbish at it so know that it's dangerous. We must ban these mentalists!

What actually happened:

The wind finally died down this morning and I had a great commute. The lights were in my favour, there were few bad motorists around and the cloud cover meant there were no nasty surprise sunbeams blinding me.

In fact, I was at top speed today and, once past Acton, barely dipped below 20mph as the bus lane was clear nearly all the way. Coming up to Shepherd's Bush the traffic in the main lane was stationary as there are nasty roadworks, with no buses about and precious few cyclists, I was able to make excellent time. But, about a mile short of Shepherd's Bush, disaster nearly struck.

A woman stepped out from behind a stationary lorry, nowhere near a crossing, right in front of me.

I pulled the brakes and, with some mega-fishtailing, managed to stop in time. I pulled over to catch my breath and the woman ran over. 'I'm so sorry!' was all I heard. Still in shock I told her how fast I'd been going and to please be more careful in future. Secretly I was hugely impressed that she hadn't dropped the catering tray she was carrying.

She was shocked at how fast I'd been going, apologised again and skipped merrily off, obviously in a rush. I got back up to speed and headed to work. In the lift I was praised by a fellow employee who'd seen me stop at a red light at a crossing by the office. We both grumbled about cyclists who jump the light before I got off on my floor.

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