Sunday, August 16, 2009

15 Days After

My first ride since the accident. I was a little nervous. 2 reasons really. 1: A mental concern. What would my frame of mind be like as I rode again. Ever since the accident I wondered If I would be very timid or super-careful my first time out. I always thought I watched out for myself very well. Looked for potential dangers and tried to avoid them. Would I be too careful? Is my newly enhanced suspicion of all cage drivers going to affect my ability to enjoy the ride? 2: A physical concern. I am not entirely healthy yet. My shoulder has healed very nicely, still a bit sore, but range of motion is good and it feels strong again. The hip is another matter. It feels like every muscle attached to my hip is pulled and sore. The soreness gets better each day, but the improvement is very slow and very frustrating at times. But I no longer have to hold myself up against furniture or walls and can walk, albeit slowly, without the aid of a crutch or other device. I still walk with a bit of a limp and cannot walk very fast at all. But my scooter, Max, had been at the dealership ever since the accident and it was time to get him home. He started right up and ran beautifully all the way home. I think he survived the accident better than I did. He has some scratches and a bent turn signal bar, but otherwise he is ready to go. As I headed out, the traffic was not real heavy, but normal for a Saturday afternoon. Lots of people were out doing errands and other things. It was a bit windy, some small thunderstorms in the area. But otherwise a beautiful afternoon. I was also excited to wear my new helmet for the first time, my first full face helmet. I was a little surprised how the helmet quieted the ride. The purring of the engine was still very noticeable, but other sounds were a bit more muffled. As I rode on I was very conscious of how other drivers behaved and was very aware of the relative positions of other drivers as I went down the road. But I did not feel the need to be extra cautious and actually felt quite comfortable. The only problem I had while riding was putting my left leg down when I had to come to a stop. It was a bit sore when I did that, but not excruciating. Some thoughts occurred to me regarding a fellow blogger with an arthritic hip and the pain he must experience at times. As I rode I actually became more interested in the differences in the ride that the new helmet made. I was a bit concerned that my field of vision might be more restricted, but really did not find that to be the case. The quietness of the helmet surprised me a bit. It also seemed to catch the wind more than my old helmet. It was certainly heavier than my old helmet. So far, I like the new helmet very much. The route home was very similar to my route home from the office so the streets were all very familiar, just some new road repairs in a couple of spots. My wife had dropped me off at the dealership, intending to stop at the grocery store on her way home. I spent a little time with Lloyd at the shop as we checked a few things out on the scooter and took a few pictures. I arrived home just after my wife did. She didn't say so before dropping me off, but when I got home she said she was worried about me riding, for the same reasons I was concerned. But the ride was enjoyable and rather uneventful, which was just fine with me. In fact, today the physical concerns were probably more important to me than the mental concerns. But over time I think the physical concerns will go away almost entirely as I eventually heal. The mental concerns will stay with me a bit longer, and maybe never completely go away. It will become a part of a learning and experience process I think. The ride was about 7 miles. Maybe not a great ride, but definately a good ride! It was good to feel the air again.


  1. Jim, thanks for blogging on these recent events of your riding career, and of returning after a fall. While it may have not been much in miles, the ride was much in character - you got back on, and you did great! Good to see you back in the saddle, my friend! P.S., when can I come over for BBQ???

  2. Tripping over a garden hose doesn't mean you'll trip over everything else. Just walk with more awareness. Ride the same way. Love the new helmet, by the way!

  3. Jim, when you fall off a horse, you best getting right back on again...! You done the right thing(s) so far...I think you are certainly going to be a hell of a lot more cautious when riding.
    Glad you brought the scooter home...and you're up and about even if you are not 100% yet...It will take as much as a year if not longer for you to heal completely...hang in there...I hope youare suing them for damages or at least your insurance company is...
    Cheers and keep well my friend

  4. Dear CPA3485:

    So it's been an additional ten days since your last post. How are you feeling now? Have you been out riding again? Has your club organized a ride in your honor yet?

    I try to read every blog listed under my "Destinations" column every day, and to post on each new one. I sent you a couple of notes that didn't make the cut. Iwas just curious if I had offended you in some way, or if it they just never got through.

    Heal quickly... Ride decisively.

    Fondest regards,
    Twisted Roads

  5. Lance,
    Thanks for the kind comments. And next time I bbq some stuff I'll make a note to send some to you. Haven't done much of it lately, but thinking about it more and more.

  6. Irondad,
    Your wisdom has always impressed me. The few rides I have made since have been at a much more careful rate with a new distrust of all others on the road. But it feels really good to be back riding a bit. Thanks and take care.

  7. Baron,
    Where to start, having just recently found out about your own accident and wondering whether you posted your comment here before or after your own fall. Makes me feel that my accident pales in comparison to yours and hope you can get back up and riding soon.
    The whole insurance issue has become another story, but siffice it to say that it seems to be working out okay even if things take a lot longer than it seems like they should.
    Take Care of yourself,

  8. Jack,
    If I was really pissed at you, just know that I would tell you. Don't have any idea why your previous comments might not have posted, lets blame blogger on that. Have experienced a little of that myself where I thought I had posted a comment but it seems to disappear.
    Until today, have not ridden much at all. I strained my back last week a bit, probably due to favoring my left leg so much. Missed a couple more days of work and I am so behind at work it has ceased to be funny anymore. But even that has improved now. The commuting to work has resumed as of today.

  9. You're back in the saddle. Congratulations!

    It's normal, I'm sure, to feel the way you describe. I rarely if ever think of my accident. It was last year, broken collar bone and five broken ribs. The first time I rode my bike again, I put on 800ish miles to bring it back from Virginia were it stayed the winter. The ride was long enough to help me bond with it again and long enough to let me know that I still had some healing left to do.

    At times, I still feel some of the physical effects but rarely anything mental. I've address and continue to address the mental aspect by practicing,taking advanced courses and now, I've added track day to 'cycle schooling. We can't afford to not feel confident out there, so I wage war against the mental, which can play tricks on us, especially if we've been hurt.

    It sounds like you're doing it right. Taking time to reflect and heal while still getting out there to engage the road and the world.

    Glad you're recovering nicely.