Listening to all this stuff about accidents makes me realise what an uneventful
uni-life I’ve led. I did have one incident, however, which though painful at the
time was a real help in my learning.
I was one of those closet uni-riders when I was learning: always behind closed
doors when no-one was looking so they couldn’t see me fall. I spent about two
months like this, riding between the various bits of furniture in our lounge. On
day, I was kind of reaching the end of the room, so I stopped and grabbed the
chair back. I was sat on top, but suddenly the chair moved, and the uni flew
forwards from under me. The unfortunate thing was that I was so near to the
wall: the uni hit it and rebounded at high velocity before the saddle had left
my crotch. Needless to say I doubled up immediately and started practising
The upside of this incident is that I banned myself from riding indoors, and
within a couple of days vastly improved my confidence and skills. That was two
years back, and I’ve not had an accident since.
The nearest I’ve come to a fatality was last year, turning right from Baker
Street into Euston Road here in London. I’ll just say that Euston Road is a dual
carriageway, and that the bus-driver following me was too amazed to remember to
steer… somehow I got out of the way in time, but I don’t remember how.