When I first arrived in Melbourne, over 5 years ago, Elliot drove me to my first Carlton game ("The Greatest Footy team ever") who from my perspective over the last 5 years are The Worst Footy team ever. I digress. Another thing he said was, "Over time, you will come to detest the trams!" This was speaking as a Melbourne driver. And how very true that is.
When you first move to Melbourne or visit, the trams are a pleasant novelty. As a gas guzzling driver, they are the enemy! I digress.
What I didn't realise is that trams are the greater enemy of The Cyclist. And that includes me. Or more to the point, Tram Lines are the greatest enemy of cyclist.
A few hours ago, near to the site of my one and only adult bike crash, and just past its 4th anniversary, 9/12/2002, I had another crash. A big one! Almost identical to the first crash of 4 years ago. Same road, almost same spot. Tram Lines. This time it was at quiet high speed, coming down Glenhuntly Road, nothing behind me (except another cyclist), nothing in front of me, "Ah, I'll cross the tram lines to get to the petrol station to pump up the tyres." I moved, the bike didn't. Leaning to turn right my weight was committed, my bike wasn't, it was in the tram line. Too late, I went flying, big wipe-out along the road, at speed, bouncing along the road. Ouch! Well actually not ouch. It didn't hurt at all, until I noticed my knee caked in blood, my arm, my shoulder, my hip.
It's like a slow motion thing isn't it. You're fully aware of what's happening as well. My bike took the full force on it's side, then so did I, right hip, knee, shoulder, and left arm which came across. I got up almost immediately, picked the bike up and got off the road.
The cyclist behind me stopped. My witness to the speed of my crash. I told him I was ok. He didn't think I was, because he saw the speed. I assured him I was ok. Thank you for stopping whoever you are.
And then the pain and shock set in. Amazing isn't it. The first 5 mins you're ok, and then you realise what's happened. My knee was the most obvious bit, cut and bleeding, but over the hours, it's my shoulder that's really hurting. It's amazing how well we're built to take a fall, all in the right places, most of the impact was just below my hip, on the soft bit, so nothing damaged except a big bruise.
When will I ever learn. On tram lines, I usually slow down, jump the line, or make damn sure I twist my bike to be more at an angle to tram line, but not this time.
Oh well, time to get back on my bike! And I love trams, when I'm on one!