Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Rain brings out the worst behavior in automobile drivers

I decided to "risk it" and ride to work today, knowing that we were expecting some severe thunderstorms in the afternoon. I have started to look forward to my rides, such that I am easily convinced to ride no matter the forecast. I tuned in good ol' www.intellicast.com to keep tabs on the front's progress. Sure enough, at around 3:00 the rain started with the slow steady heavy drops, quickly turning into driven sheets pounding the ground like miniature hammers at a 45 degree angle. The rain eased as my time to leave approached. With the hot and humid temperatures, the rain would provide natural cooling.

I was nearly right hooked. Riding along route 129 toward Reading, I was attentive to the drainage grates and the white line. The road has a fair volume of traffic, but I have never felt endangered. As I glanced up from the road after avoiding a small obstacle, the minivan that was in the process of passing me proceeded to signal the right turn and started it just ahead of me. I was able to brake in time, I am sure the Kool-Stop Salmon pads helped. I followed the van until she turned around in a driveway and saw me gesturing to her like "what were you doing?". She pulled up and lowered her window. I was surprisingly calm as I asked if she saw me as she nearly ran me off the road. Of course her reply was "no". I did not reply angrily, just dropped my head and asked her to be careful.

I could have acted angry and abrasive, but what would that accomplish? The truly scary part is that people are ignorant and inattentive.

It reminds me that ww all need to be careful, wary, and attentive while out there enjoying the roads.

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