CYCLISTS BEWARE: Driving while using a mobile.
CYCLISTS BEWARE: Driving while using a mobile.

Beware the driver using a mobile

BEING a cyclist really does give you an insight to people when they climb behind the wheel.

It's as though being on two wheels brings out a driver's real sense of self on the road.

The other day I was tootling down to the blood bank to give some plasma before swinging past the library, when a car changed lanes in front of me without the benefit of using the indicator.

I'm not sure who got the biggest fright - me when I stepped on the brakes and managed to stop without falling over or the driver when he looked up from his mobile.

Thankfully, no one was injured, nor were our vehicles, but he didn't stop and he shook his fist at me.

Hopefully he has been more careful since then.

After my heart stopped pounding quite so quickly, I jumped back on and headed off to the Red Cross, where the usual terrifying ordeal of having a needle (gently) inserted in my arm was an absolute pleasure compared to what I'd just avoided.

I really needed that opportunity to have a wee lie down.

I like to think the driver was mortified. He's nearly mown down an innocent cyclist and was feeling embarrassment and remorse, not anger that I was where he wanted to drive.

It was interesting because really, the vast majority of people behind the wheel here are really nice.

Honestly, there's quite a number of delightful drivers around town who regularly wave me ahead of them at a roundabout

In particular, a shout-out to the bus drivers who are extra-courteous and always give me a smile (possibly bemused by my sunglass-inducing Lycra colour combinations?).

While I do carry a mobile phone with me in my jersey pocket in case Kiltman needs me to collect me due to a mechanical issue*, there's no way I'm checking for texts while riding along.

For a start, there's too much to see and enjoy and I would hate to miss the chance to wave to a friend or neighbour as I make my way at a heady 20km/h down the road.

Not to mention keeping an eye out for swooping magpies.

But that, as they say, is another story.

* See last week's Bike Shorts