Wed, 10 Sep 2003

The big crash: 7 years ago, today

On a cold September morning, just like this one, seven years ago, today, I pulled on a cycling jacket, long fingered gloves, and headed to work. I left a few minutes later than usual. My ride took me past Central Valley High School where classes had started just a few days before.

A 16 year-old student, licensed just a few weeks prior, made a left turn in front of me. I steered left and braked for all I was worth, first trying to avoid an impact with the cab of his small, Toyota pickup that would have sent me through the glass, then trying to avoid a crash all together. I didn't make it. I impacted right at the back axle, went airborne and landed on my back in the street on the other side.

The crash fractured both the radius and ulna of my left arm, sheering off the ball joints at the wrist. It left scars on both arms where they impacted the side of the truck and a deep bruise across my right leg that took months to fade away. My arm was repaired with stainless steel plates and screws. The crash destroyed my bicycle.

Seven years later, I'm back on the bike. I'm not riding as many miles as I did then, but I'm enjoying every minute I ride. I'm hoping for a less eventful ride to work this morning.

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