I hit my first pedestrian today! Oh yes, after many almost run ins with incredibly stupid lemings who just blindly walk out onto the street without looking if, say a bus, a truck, a car or a cyclist is hurtling towards them, I finally collided with a pedestrian. This morning a middle aged woman came running out infront of a bus, and into the cycle lane just as I was traversing that exact same piece of space. Bash! Right into her - breaks screeching in the rain, me bending the handle bars in an attempt to not go over the top, as I slamed to a stop, front wheel right between her legs. I screamed out, in possibly the most East end accent since Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins "FAAH-KING HELL WOMAN!!". Unfortunatetly (or fortunately, I'm not sure yet) she wasn't hurt, and was still smiling despite my obsence Van Dyke impression, was very appologetic and asked if I was ok. This of course made it impossible for me to yell "why weren't you bloody well looking where you were bloody well goinig?" and I could only grumble "yes, I'm fine. Are you ok?". Grrr. I hate it when I want to be angry and yell at someone and they are nice to me. Inconsiderate feckless bastards.
Speaking of cycling, it's only 3 months 20 odd days (but whose counting?) until my London to Paris cycle. I've taken a more pro active approach to fund raising by deciding to start making cakes, bringing them into work, and hoping people will chuck some pennies in a donation tin in exchange for buttery goodness. I write up a little blurb about what it is that I'm doing, what I'm offering in return for their hard earned cash, and if possible a little bit of history about the cake (no not like "I've had these eggs in my fridge for the last month" but more "A Victoria Sponge is named after Queen Victoria because she liked them so much". I've also got my first corporate sponsor! Li kindly donated a bunch of Green and Blacks eggs which went down quite well! Unforunately they went down even quicker with people when I took the tin away and they didn't feel the need to donate any money.. Yesterday I brought in my first Victoria Sponge, and I have big probably drink induced plans of making custard tarts, bakewell tarts, coffee and walnut cakes... I figure this tactic will work 2 fold - 1 I get money for cakes, 2 I get to actually practice making cakes and sweets - something I'm not massively confident about because I get really bored eating cakes, so I never make them for myself.
As far as training is concerned - well.... that's another story. The charity I'm raising money for had an information day a few weeks back that I went to. And whilst everyone seemed nice, I met some pretty hard core cycling snobs - the kind that usually work at places like Evans where they don't talk to you unless you're covered head to toe in skin tight lycra (actually is there any other kind but skin tight?), are wearing cleats, and have the body of an adonis. If you're like me - sneakers, cycling shorts, t-shirt, and not adonis like in anyway, they have a remarkable less likely to help you and remarkably more likely to believe you're made out of thin air and thus ignore your existence completely. Much in the same way that sales assistants to do women in electrical or computing shops. Bunch of ****s.
Anyway, at the information day, I met people who are seriously hard core - one guy had already raised way in excess of the money needed for the event, was doing London to Southend cycle rides, going on rides with a cycle group every Sunday ("where we ride at about 26 miles an hour constantly"), and generally looked at me like I was never going to finish. When I'd mentioned I was learning how to ride in cleats but I had fallen over and hurt my hand, he sniffed "oh I did a similar thing a few weeks ago! Though I think I broke my rib. Did I go to hospital? Of course not, I'm seriously hard core and needed to be back on my bike the very next day or I will die. Besides, I don't need a doctor. I can push the rib back in and live through the pain cause I'm a cyclist".
Christ what in god's name have I got myself into?