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Riding to work in Melbourne

Post by: kasio99

Tuesday, 10 September, 2013

Riding to work it the best thing for you; physically, mentally and financially. I have to admit though, that the thought of doing it at the start was a little daunting and I would think up any little excuse to put it off riding the first time.  My dad however is an absolute machine when it comes to riding. He could ride home through a Korean air strike.  Rain hail or shine he’s out there battling the elements on two wheels as thin as your little finger.  So I figured if he can do it then so can I.

It may sound silly, but every ride to and from work is an adventure that poses unique challenges. These challenges include but not limited to getting run down, forgetting a change of underwear and falling off the bike.  All of these incidents have happened to me.

Getting run down sounds much worse than it actually was. One sunny Wednesday morning a young student was pulling out of a side street not looking in the direction that I was coming.  As I passed, the small white hatchback rolled over my back wheel, buckling it beyond repair.  She was very apologetic at the time though she changed her tune when I sent her the bill for a premium replacement wheel that I found at a premium bike store. The threat of legal action put her back in her place and within a week I was back on the road.

Forgetting a change of underwear is worse than it sounds. All I can say is the thought of having to go commando  in suit pants for the entire day isn’t my idea of fun.  Ok I’ll start with a confession; I don’t wear underwear underneath my lycra shorts while riding. It’s already way too overcrowded and uncomfortable with the bike seat padding and not to mention once things start to get sweaty down there.  So that’s why I wasn’t wearing any in the first place.  So now I’m in the change rooms naked after taking a shower and I realise that I have forgotten my underwear. This was sorted out by a quick run to the local Big W department store for a pack of multicoloured Bonds underwear that I keep as spares just in case I find myself in the same situation again.

Falling off my bike was definitely the most embarrassing of the three. I have cycling shoes that lock into the pedals.  At the time of this particular incident I was quite inexperienced with the whole lock in/lock out thing. One time I had to think quickly to stop for a tram that was crossing my path.  I remembered to brake though I didn’t remember to lock out of the pedals in time.  Not having the ability to put a foot down on the ground to balance myself, in slow motion, I lost balance to one side and landed on my elbow and knee taking off a layer of skin.  Trying to protect my dignity I put on a brave face and looked up to assess who may have seen what just happened.  As I looked up the tram slowly rolled past packed with very entertained commuters.

All this said I still love riding to work and think that it definitely beats catching the train.

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1. Rob

25.2.13, 4.29pm

It reminded me of the time I forgot to bring a towel, only to realise upon stepping out of the shower. On toilet role later, I was ready for work...

2. Rob

25.2.13, 4.00pm

Great article...

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