DC to ….

December 24, 2018 0 By Tenzin Gyatso

By cyclistmike On April 27, 2015

We are where we put ourselves. I’ve been asked, “what went wrong?” on my recent bike trip. I’m smart enough not to let things go wrong these days, but I found myself in a sticky situation.

My bicycle journey from DC to Richmond ended some 20 miles North West of Fredricksburg, at a little Baptist Church on VA route 612.
What went wrong, is more like what was wrong. I was on a small country road, it was 9pm and I had two and a half hours ahead of me, one of which I would exclusively be on back roads. At the only little grocery store in miles, after being invited to a wedding, I was warned by a groomsman, “be careful of all the crazies”.
Yet there I was, I got back on the road and less than a mile later I was passed by a big farm truck. He gave me plenty of space, but smashed the accelerator as he passed me, giving me a nice cloud of black exhaust.
If I’m given space, I’ll take what comes, a black cloud of exhaust is far preferred, to another type of asshole, and that’s the kind that decides to drive near me, to scare me, to teach me a lesson.
That was as the sun set, with its beautiful orange and pink undertones, slowly sinking to my right, as it disappeared, I cherished it’s beauty, but it was bittersweet because the safety I had had earlier in the day was gone. There was no bike path and no shoulder. For my sanity’s sake, I had been counting on it, what kind of madman bikes on a country road at night?
The sun sank and I continued on with Venus following the sun low into the horizon, it was bright, then it too disappeared.
My life is too valuable to play Russian roulette with drunk, texting drivers.
I knew exactly who to call. My parents wasted no time in picking me up, driving 2 hours into midnight.