So I have seen it many times. You're not true biker unless you take your first spill.... because let's face it, it's bound to happen. Well I was biking up the Manhattan Bridge into Manhattan which as far as I can tell has the greatest grade of all the bridges in the city. Before I continue let me say, I haven't gotten clipless shoes or pedals yet, but it's definitely the next purchase. So I am shifting to a higher gear as I stand up in the saddle and the chain skips. All this happens at once which causes my left front foot to slip off the pedal (I would have been saved with clipless) and I fly forward over the handle bars. I feel my bike flip over itself behind me and my right ankle scrapes the pedal. I could picture myself at that moment, as my chest and head led the way, slamming face first into the concrete below. Somehow my legs caught up I landed on both my feet. I am very glad I did not have to put the helmet to the test!
I was also lucky enough that there was almost nobody around me. Bikers fly down that bridge so that could have been really disastrous. I picked up my bike to assess the damage. The left side of my handle bar was bent inward and looked totally messed up. I didn't get a picture because I got very upset and my adrenaline was still rushing. I was thinking of all the things to yell at the bike shop when I showed them what happened and how it was the bikes fault, not mine. The bike was still ride-able so I went very slowly back to the shop all the while totally forgetting about my ankle. The guys at NYC Velo listened to the account and explained it's not a good story unless there's blood as they pointed down to the floor. I looked down at my ankle. At that point it had already started to dry out but there was a nice streak of blood down to my sock... I guess the story was good enough. They then explained it would be no problem to fix the handle bars right away. I didn't see how it was done, but it was fixed it less than two minutes and I was back on my way... home. That was good for a night.
Here's to my first accident, I guess I'll call it, and to many more.
Get on your bikes and ride!