rmc28: (silly)
(It is currently a few degrees above freezing when I cycle to work)
  1. Help! It is freezing cold and I can see my breath in the air! Put on coat, gloves, hat-with-earflaps, and still feel shivery!
  2. Hmm, I seem to be warming up, better take the coat off at the next traffic lights.
  3. My hands are a bit hot, perhaps I should take my gloves off.
  4. Ow! My hands are too cold! Put the gloves back on again.
  5. My head's a bit warm, the hat can come off.
  6. My hands are sweaty! Take the gloves off again.
  7. Still cold, but my hands are ok. 
  8. Actually my hands are strangely warm.
  9. Help! I am suddenly Boiling Hot all over and there isn't anything else I can decently (or easily) take off!
  10. Slow down for remaining journey in hopes of cooling down before arrival.
I have stopped even bothering with the coat, and I am doing much better on the days when I wear a long-sleeved running top for the commute and change into something more work-appropriate on arrival.  Shivery at first, but keeps stages 9-10 fairly minimal.  I need to find better gloves.  (Thinner? Easier to remove?  Maybe I need lightweight mittens or something.)

I didn't use to overheat so much.  I'm hoping it'll pass as I regain fitness, or cycling to work in summer will be no fun.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
I've been getting an interesting range of reactions to casually mentioning having travelled by bike recently, i.e. while 9 months pregnant. So, a poll:

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 30

How surprised are you that I am still cycling?

View Answers
Mean: 3.53 Median: 3 Std. Dev 2.45
Not at all surprised 18 (26.7%)
25 (16.7%)
37 (23.3%)
41 (3.3%)
51 (3.3%)
60 (0.0%)
76 (20.0%)
82 (6.7%)
90 (0.0%)
Very surprised 100 (0.0%)

How positive/negative is your reaction to me still cycling?

View Answers
Mean: 9.07 Median: 10 Std. Dev 1.36
Very negative 10 (0.0%)
20 (0.0%)
30 (0.0%)
40 (0.0%)
50 (0.0%)
63 (10.3%)
71 (3.4%)
85 (17.2%)
92 (6.9%)
Very positive 1018 (62.1%)
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
I just (at about 9am) saw a car clip a cyclist coming out of the junction from Gilbert Road into Milton Road. Or more precisely, I was vaguely aware in my peripheral vision of the car & cyclist in their respective lanes, but what I saw was the bicycle suddenly jerk, move erratically and then fall over with the cyclist in a heap, and the car stop.

I stopped, parked my bike and walked over, at which point the cyclist was getting to his feet and wheeling his bike out of the road. No visible damage to him or the bike, and he assured me he was ok. I suggested he should take it easy and he prepared to walk with his bike, so I carried on to work.

The whole time, the driver sat in her car watching. I suppose at least she didn't drive off regardless, but she didn't even get out to check for herself he was ok or hand over insurance details. Speaking with my driver hat on, I was appalled.

Things I realised 5 minutes too late I should have done:
1. Taken the car number
2. Given the cyclist my details as a witness
3. Encouraged the cyclist to ask the driver for her insurance details
4. Stayed until they were both off the scene safely

I'd love to think there won't be a next time I witness an accident, but sadly there probably will, so these are lessons identified for next time.

(Lesson 5: refresh my first aid knowledge?)
rmc28: My cargo bike with red waterproof cover (bicycle)
For the first time ever in the 14 years I've lived in Cambridge, I cycled along Gilbert Road in both directions without once having to dodge a car parked in the cycle lane. The double-yellow lines have now made it all the way up both sides of the road, and the nice wide red tarmac that got laid a few weeks ago was finally entirely free of parked cars in both directions.

I cycle Gilbert Road both ways every weekday to get Charles from nursery. Earlier this week Charles & I were nearly hit by a car that accelerated when I signalled rather than leaving us room to pass a parked car, and I wish I could say that was an isolated incident. Today I just had a nice swift ride along a pleasant street and at no point was I scared or intimidated. It was a dramatic and very pleasant change.

I am very grateful to the hard work of the Cambridge Cycling Campaign over at least the last decade, and of course to the councillors who agreed the proposals and the workers who actually laid the tarmac and painted the road. I'm not at all grateful to the local residents who fought so hard against the change, especially those who continued to endanger me (and the hundreds of other cyclists passing every day) by parking in the cycle lanes right up until the double-yellows were actually painted.

A tiny remaining niggle is that a minority of drivers are using the cycle lane as a queueing lane to turn left at the junctions at each end. I'm hoping that'll reduce when the lanes are fully painted in.


rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Rachel Coleman

October 2017

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