Friday morning was put aside to grab some more singletrack time with the new GT I-Drive 5 1.0. The day was somewhere between wet and dry depending on how you judge these things. The bike was brand spanking new and I was itching to give it the beans on some terrain I know only too well. Smiffy was set to take some pictures and all systems were go.
Get the bike out of Smiffs car and "bugger, I've forgotten to pump the tyres up properly." With no pump with us there was no way we could just go ride. Still it was a long way to come not to get anything, so we decided to just do a few passes on an easy turn to get some lens action in the can.
Smiff spotted the turn and began preparing the lights while I did a recce run through of the turn. A bit sketchy running around on half pressure tyres, but hey, I've been doing this a while, I know what I'm doing. Trial run was all good so back to the run in point to wait for Smiffy's signal.
"All right Just" says Paul, so I roll away, no pedalling, the gravity alone will power the bike for this shot. Gently through the left hand turn, so far all good. Small fist sized rock to negotiate; front tyre gets odd deflection and send the bike right while I exit over the left hand side of the bar towards two trees.
In a split second you can make a lot of decisions. I was heading towards the right hand tree, so I tried to aim left a bit as I travelled headfirst arms outstretched like I was an Olympic high board diver. I know now how hard it is to redirect missiles while in flight as I failed to make it cleanly between the trees.
I bashed my right hip, thigh, knee and shin as I scraped past the right hand tree. I swear I could hear it laughing. I landed like a sack of wet shit. And immediately knew this was a good one. My right leg felt crooked and my right foot wasn't responding. Bad signs. I managed "Paul I've broken my leg" before trying to manually check for bones through skin or new joints where there should be none. Thankfully both checks were negative - maybe I might be as lucky as I think I am.
After composing myself with some controlled deep breathing I tried to get up and with some help from the saplings managed it. To cut the story short I spent nearly seven hours in the local hospital getting three X-Rays done and left at half seven for a pick me up bag of cod and chips (thanks dad).
It appears as though the damage was muscular and to the ligaments around the inside of the right knee. This weekend was spent with my right leg up, getting iced and massaged to get the swelling down. Thanks also to Cheryl and Alex for being understanding nurse maids.
Hopefully it'll take a week to get back on the bike. But with loads of new stuff piling up against my desk, it's very tempting to try sooner.