If you haven’t got anything good to say it’s best to keep quiet so this will be my last blog entry here for a while. I’ve seriously fallen out of love with cycling and merely tolerate it at the moment. This may be largely seasonal and due to an imbalance between cycling for pleasure and commuting which is largely stressful, often unpleasant and increasingly dangerous.
I’ve finally given up on cycle advocacy, it has worn me down over the last 7 years. Most of the time it felt like flogging a dead horse and as there are other areas of my life I would like to focus on I think it’s better if I am not described (by myself or others) as a cycling enthusiast.
A number of things have brought this about but the straw that broke the camel’s back was yet another near miss tonight which means I can no longer recommend cycling to my local friends with any conviction. I know of someone who has ended up with a damaged spine after encouraging him to cycle to Manchester from Prestwich so don’t want to feel responsible for anyone else’s discomfort.
Without boring you with a blow by blow account of tonights episode a taxi mini-bus drove across my path in Sedgely Park with no intention of stopping despite me approaching at speed with right of way along Bury New Road. He was heading to the squash club so I gave chase knowing it was a dead end and basically swore repeatedly at the driver with increasing venom until he apologised for what he had just done.
I’ve given up any pretence of doing any Sustrans Volunteer Rangering ever again. As I cycled along the (very useful) bit of NCN Route 6 through Middlewood Locks that 4 years on isn’t yet signed by the council I smirked at the ridiculously oversized end of cycle lane sign (at the end of 50m of cycle lane) which will probably be highlighted by fellow cyclists as a ‘facility of the month’ and then I laughed at the newly re-opened Great George’s St crossing of Chapel St which cost £110k of Salford City Council’s tiny cycling budget 3 years ago and has been dug up and lost many of the marking that were carefully painted on. So no more talking shop cycle forum meetings where cycle enthusiasts disagree and defend their own on road vs off road agendas and no more Bike Fridays that don’t attract any new riders (sorry Rich).
I have another blog with a different focus. This one will remain live because I do enjoy reading some older entries, it sometimes resolves household disputes about what happened when and it seems to provide a useful resource for the many people who Google the term ‘Vimto Milkshake’ (as well as ‘Prestwich knobhead’).