Disgruntled commuter is going over to the dark side. I’ve bought all the kit, I’ve worked out my route and I’ve ticked the organ donor box on the GP registration form: I am now ready to be a cyclist in London. The truth is, my legs are tired from walking twenty minutes to Vauxhall every morning, and twenty minutes back again, and my lungs are tired of breathing in the lovely mixture of fumes from the cars. I used to cycle regularly from Ealing Broadway to Kew and I enjoyed the shot of adrenaline that a daily dicing with death or dismemberment* brought on. Coffee just doesn’t deliver the same kick in the morning. And please note that I do not wear lycra, I do not run red lights, I do not cycle and talk on my phone at the same time (haven’t got the breath…) and I only cycle very slowly and politely on the pavement when I have to.
As I had a day off I thought I’d do a trial run, see how much time I would save. The figures break down like this:
Farting about with my lock and lights and bag releasing my bike from the railings at home: 5 minutes
Cycle to train station: 5 minutes
Farting about with lock and lock extension and lights and bag at Vauxhall: 5 minutes
Grand total of time saved over walking: 5 minutes
Oh well. As I found out on the North London Line, the minutes have a way of adding up…
* If any faint hearted parent types are reading this, please note the usual amount of artistic licence applies.