Wednesday, 17 March 2010

The scenic route

I started this morning in a foul mood. On my way to pick up S a motorist pulled over, rolled down her window and let rip about me 'cycling in the middle of the road'. I was going 18mph, was turning right at the upcoming T-junction and, frankly, have the legal right to cycle where I damn well please.

I was so angry I was shaking. There was just no need to be so abusive and I'm embarrassed to say I swore. When I've made a genuine error I'm mentally prepared for a tirade of abuse, but not when I'm just getting on with my day.

Anyhoo. I picked up S, still very angry, and I tried to let it go. Luckily, fate intervened. The traffic was HORRENDOUS. It was too tight even to filter past. Other cyclists were hopping onto the pavement or attempting silly things but I made an executive decision and we took the 'scenic route'. On a bike, this means getting off the main road, pointing Reg in vaguely the right direction and weaving through backstreets until you know where you are.

We ended up back on the main drag a couple of times and got off again but I'm still certain it was quicker than attempting to negotiate the gridlock. Not only that but as I arrived at work I realised my mood had lifted and I no longer cared about little miss middle class, whose husband probably doesn't love her anymore and whose children are probably spoilt brats.

I hope she got to work on time and sorted out whatever was bothering her. As S pointed out, she'll probably look up the Highway Code, realise I was right and feel really silly.


  1. I took the scenic route this morning as well, but regretted it slightly as it ended up being far busier and narrower than my usual route.

  2. That's the risk we route pioneers take and I always think that if the traffic's bad enough to force you off-route you have nothing to lose by trying something different.

  3. Yikes...sounds just like the woman who did something like this to me! Yes...all the anger ends up as frustration and then you end up all shaky.
    Glad you told her where to stick it!

    It's just unfortunate that drivers here do not have no awareness whatsoever of other road users and their legal rights/safety.

    Do they expect cyclists to magically work their way through a row of parked cars? Idiots!

    Sorry had another minor incident today and am slightly irritated myself.

    Just glad you managed to get to work and back safely.