I’ve been neglecting the blog. I should have talked about the HUBB meet back in June where Howard and I presented on the Pamir Highway (and met many amazing peops). I could have reviewed our summertime test rides of a BMW R1200, GS800 and the Honda CRF250 or shared our summer green lane rides and I should also have definitely recounted my epic fail on our second Motorcycling Club trial… Life just seemed to get a bit too busy for blogging, so now I’ll just talk about the biggie.
The Edinburgh Trail epic fail
First a bit of context: just before the Edinburgh Trial (30th September), Howard took a new job in Germany. It was all a rather rushed pack up and move, asap. Edward and Gertrude went back to Surrey to live and I moved to a new place in London. Shortly after all the upheaval, a car hit me while cycling (bicycle, not motorbike) in London. He knocked me flying headfirst onto the road. I was sore and had multiple knocks that are (still) healing but all things considered, I was actually very lucky with the injuries I sustained.
10 days after the cycling accident was the Edinburgh Trial. I was still a bit bruised and fragile but we went for it anyway; Howard was coming back from Germany especially and anyone who knows me knows I’m not exactly the person who says ‘I can’t’.
The night went smoothly, it being out second Trial, starting later and being shorter, nothing seemed quite as daunting as the Land’s End did back in April. Sadly though, it wasn’t to last. Just as the daylight came and I was starting to relax into the flow of sections and tests, it all became too much.
On only section four (of 12), I lost it. Gertrude’s back end spun out on the slippery clay stones under the steep, wet terrain, she did a 180 and took the lower part of my left leg with her. The rest of my body continued in a forward momentum. The noise that came from my knee spelt bad news.
Howard somehow got Gertrude up the hill. I somehow walked the hill, rode her to the checkpoint (missing out the next section), managed to get my boots off and eat a bacon bap before the pain set in and I was unable to move or take weight on my knee.
After A&E, crutches, doctors back in London, referral to an orthopedic consultant and an MRI, I was diagnosed with severe MCL and minor ACL tears, 3 weeks on crutches, 6 weeks – 3 months to repair.
Unable to ride, play rugby, do anything even remotely active with my weekends, I turned attention to something a bit more positive; help someone even worse off.
With the extra downtime, I’ve been planning and working towards fundraising for The Hope Centre, Nepal, a charity I worked with back in 2009 & 10. The Hope Centre is an organisation offering community based projects and programmes that improve lives for the disabled so they live with dignity, self-worth, independence and rights in the community. They need more community nurses to perform outreach work and have asked for help to fund a person through the necessary training. The twist is the guy earmarked for the job, Amrit, is also a single leg amputee, having lost his right leg riding pillion back in 2012.
The shameless plea (x 2)
I had three weeks on crutches, have three months without running and a season out of rugby and that’s hard, but I will make a full recovery, supported by the NHS and physio. I will ride a bike again, run again and I will play rugby again (eventually).
Amrit’s life changed suddenly and forever riding on the back of his cousin’s bike. His dad has a substantial medical debt, and Amrit relies on charitable handouts in a country where disability makes you second class.
We can help make that suffering a little less painful, and in doing so, it means other people’s lives also become less painful too.
Perhaps you’d consider giving a small donation to the Crowdfunder campaign here?
Always wear your cycling helmet when on your bike. Even if it’s two minutes to the shop. It really will save your life.