Monday, 19 January 2015
everybody feels entitled...
Cycling home from work this evening, I came over the Suspension Bridge at the Trent and headed down on the final half-mile stretch towards home. There's a corner here where the road turns and joins the much larger road that heads over Trent Bridge. The traffic flow is to the left, and to turn right, you have to cross the road at some traffic lights. To get to those lights (and also to a pedestrian crossing), you have to hop onto a little stretch of pavement and head around the corner.
As I came off the bridge and up onto the pavement there, I could see a lady with a toddler and a pushchair coming in my direction. I'm lit up like a Christmas tree with lights and fluorescent clothing at this time of year, but she had nothing to mark her out. Still, I saw her and immediately slowed down and moved right across the pavement to take up as little room as possible and to be as far out of her way as possible. As I passed, she paused to remonstrate with me for riding on the pavement. She was pompous in her manner and used suitably patronising hand gestures as she told me in no uncertain terms that I had no business riding on the pavement.
To some extent, I understand where she's coming from, especially with a toddler in tow and a pushchair. I get it. The thing that's riled me is that:
a) She was absurdly pompous
b) Actually she's wrong: the pavement is dropped here *precisely* to keep cyclists off the road on a dangerous corner with traffic on the main road flowing in the main direction.
I didn't bother starting the debate with her and just kept going, swearing under my breath.
I saw her, assessed the danger, slowed down and gave her as much room as possible on a piece of pavement I have every right to be cycling on. Maybe there are reckless cyclists around here, but I honestly don't think that I'm the problem here. Be sure to have a lovely evening though, you sour-faced, supercilious cockwomble.