I hope something out of the ordinary happened today because I couldn’t move. I was trapped in maelstrom of push bikes, cars and jackknifed buses.
Bikes were crammed into every available gap, going nowhere but making an ugly disheveled plug.
Others were hopping up on to the pavements looking for escape.
I was sat behind the bus tapping my fingers and wondering if I was supposed to be somewhere else.
I was having filter anxiety.
I was up early-ish today so I could nip out on a practice commute to the new job near Kings Cross, suss out motorbike parking availability and head back to the old job before my boss sent out a search party.
It started well enough, barely 5 minutes in and I had already successfully swerved out of the path of a car who thought he was a bus, then I was picked up by an outrider who held my hand (figuratively speaking) and showed me the ropes as he weaved in and out of cars, first the inside then the outside, all the way to Clapham. I was beginning to relax and then I lost him. I didn’t quite position myself well enough for this erratic side to side motion and thought I had plenty of time and could just wait for the bus to move, but it didn’t. Bikes were roaring past me 2 lanes to my right and I vowed not to get stuck on the inside again.
I eventually pushed and wobbled my way in between the stationary cars and enjoyed an extremely short clear run until a central reservation appeared and I had to make my choices. It was time to rejoin the chaos and get myself wedged into the Vauxhall Bridge roundabout and just pray for Bonnie sized gaps or give up and head back on roads that you could actually ride on. My petrol light came on at the pivotal moment, only 60 miles out of this tank full, and not wanting to add to the congestion by spluttering to a deathly stop I opted to pull an about turn and head back to Tooting.
So much for reconnaissance, I didn’t even make it across the river. At this rate I’ll have to set off at 6am or pull the push bike out of the shed.