Friday, March 12, 2010

First wreck of the New Year!

I decided to go for a slightly longer ride at lunch yesterday, since I'd worked the previous night until 10:00, and had to be up and ready to go by 6:30. I figured all that extra time was worth a few extra miles. Plus, it was 65° and sunny. This would be the first day of 2010 for shorts and a short-sleeve jersey!

I'd have been better off sticking with my short loops. Or maybe doing this loop in reverse. But of course, I did neither of those things. I was close to halfway through the loop, right in the middle of Oakland. I turned from Bouquet to Jonclaire, and then onto Yarrow, gingerly making my way through all of the potholes that have crept up over the course of the last month. The second half of Yarrow is a pretty steep downhill, but my own speed was kept in check by the car in front of me slowly inching down the hill. In retrospect, this was a very good thing.

After the car was out of the way, I started going down the hill. Got myself all positioned for the sharp right onto Boundary at the bottom of the hill. Didn't even really consider the road beneath me. Especially didn't notice the cinders. Ooops. I started to lean to the right and everything slid out to the left. I went down pretty hard, landing on my right hip, forearm/elbow, and shoulder.

I picked myself and the bike up off the ground and took a look to see how we were doing. The bike looked okay. I didn't see any holes in my shorts, although I knew I'd at least get a nice big bruise out of the impact. The elbow was pretty scraped up, but it wasn't pouring blood or anything. I was still about eight miles from home, so I got back on the bike, tested it out, and decided that it felt solid.

Continued on. Made my way down the Panther Hollow trail, and that's when I could feel my shoulder starting to burn a little bit. When I got to the jail trail parking lot, I took a closer look and saw some small holes in my jersey, and after unzipping, some more scrapes.

I made it the rest of the way home without incident. When I took off my jersey, cinders fell out from it. I looked at it a little more closely and noticed some holes in the side, too. Apparently my entire right side made contact with the ground in one way or another.

I got in the shower, fully aware that I was going to have to do a good job scrubbing the road burn on my elbow, as well as my shoulder. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, and I was able to get everything all clean, with no obvious signs of remaining debris.

Once I was all dried off, I cleaned the elbow out some more with peroxide and then wrapped it up in gauze. Today it's looking pretty good. Mostly dried out and not weepy at all.

It was warm enough today that I was able to just wear a t-shirt, so I didn't have to worry about keeping it covered to avoid getting blood all over a long-sleeve shirt. I'll probably cover it tonight just so there's no risk of it opening up and ruining our sheets.

The good? Well, I still finished the 18.25 mile loop in 1:02. The bike seems to be mostly fine. I washed it today and didn't see any chipped paint anywhere. Which is really surprising, actually. The tops of the shifters are a little dinged up, but that might be it as far as cosmetics.

When I cleaned the chain, put it back on, and re-oiled it, I noticed the rear derailleur making some clicky noises as I was going through the gears; not sure what's going on there. I didn't see any scratches on the derailleur when I cleaned it, but maybe the hanger got bent or something. I'd been wanting to take it over to Pro Bikes anyway for new cables and a general tune-up, so I dropped it off this evening after work and added that to the list of things I asked them to check.

Other positives:

  • I was the only person involved. I'm hoping that counts for something. If there's some quota of wrecks that I'm supposed to have, I really hope that I'm knocking them all out now, and by myself. I didn't lose consciousness or have to go to the hospital.
  • Not including various spills and scrapes on the MTB, this is my first road accident since The Great Concussion of '08. I'm glad I was able to pick myself up and get home without any trouble.

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