After a two year break from my blog I feel I owe an explanation to any readers who may come across my resumed musings, or indeed anyone who picks up where where I left off. Two years is a long time.
But before I get to the subject of this post I thought there may be a cursory interest in what happened between the recovery of my first accident and my second one.
My last post was in January, 2015 and I started back on the bike, riding the Fusion CC Sunday and midweek rides and slowly regained my fitness, although I haven’t , as yet, achieved the peak I experienced before my first crash. Nevertheless, I was back into regular riding and feeling the benefits after a long layoff.
Fast forward to 25th June, 2016 and I was out with a group of riders following the famous Teacake Run route. We’d all got as far as the junction of Stony Ridge Road and Owler Bar Road. Once the corner was negotiated the riders in front accelerated as did I, but I checked behind me to see if everyone was keeping up. However, something didn’t feel right so I turned to face front again and saw that my front wheel was at a right-angle to the bike frame.
And in that instant the bike catapulted me into the air – an observer later said I gained quite a bit of height. The landing was hard. And for a second time I had my crash helmet to thank for my survival. My first instinct was to get to the side of the road; this was an A road, with fast-moving traffic. I think the adrenalin had kicked in immediately, because although I was in a lot of pain all down my left side I managed to drag myself closer to the side of the road, but couldn’t get parallel to the verge.
The ambulance took about 45 minutes to arrive and in that time I couldn’t move. If I tried, the painful feedback put a stop to that. I couldn’t move my left leg, the back of my rib cage (left-hand side) hurt just breathing and if I tried to move my arm I got an excruciating pain near my neck. Someone put an item of clothing under my head which made me feel a lot more comfortable. Closing my eyes helped to make me feel more relaxed and to de-focus on the pain, but someone kept telling me to keep them open, and I knew they were talking to me and trying to get me to answer to ensure I didn’t lose consciousness. I remember, at the time, wishing they would just shut-up and leave me alone – a bit ungrateful, I guess, bit it didn’t feel like it at the time.
Once the ambulance arrived people moved off and let the paramedics get on with their job. Big thank you to all of you, however ungrateful I may have appeared at the time. Although, I suspect I was pretty much out of it at the time.
I do remember being placed on the stretcher and someone pointing out that I had a broken collar-bone, which explained the pain in my neck when I tried to move my arm. Although the move from the tarmac to the stretcher was carried out as gently as possible, I can still recall the experience quite vividly.
Once inside the ambulance the crew administered 6mg of morphine and I was taken to Northern General Hospital, Sheffield. Whilst laid on the floor, at the scene of the crime, I was asked if there was anyone that could be called, but of course I didn’t have my mobile phone with me, and the only contact I could think of was the email address of a friend – I always carry my mob. when on bike rides now.
I don’t remember much about waiting in the hospital for x-rays and such like, although I recall my friend arriving. He’d diverted from a journey down from Scotland to Lincoln. Fortunately he got the email on his phone and re-routed himself onto the M1 from the A1.
Next thing I recall after his arrival and a brief conversation was telling him I didn’t feel too good and could he call a doctor. And with that I passed out.
The next part of this account has been gleaned from what he told me happened next. He rushed out to find a member of staff. The monitor alarm went off and a doctor and team of nurses rushed in to find a flat response, and with that they lowered me down on the trolley so I was lying flat and administered CPR. The doctor later apologised for possibly breaking a rib in the process. Of course it was impossible for me to know if it wasn’t broken at the time of the accident.
The next thing I remember is coming round in a ward with my friend standing over me telling me never to put him through that again. Apparently, the staff thought he was family and told him to stay whilst asking his son to leave.
After the x-rays which I have no recollection of being present at I was found to have a fractured hip, ribs and collar bone.
I won’t bore you with my recovery details, but suffice to say I didn’t get back on the bike ’til the November and then only about once a month until March of this year when I started short rides once a week, and this month I’ve been getting out more regularly either on my own or with another friend.
Needless to say, my fitness is pants, but Rome wasn’t built in a day…