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Too close for comfort

It was the roar of an engine that first caught my attention. Coming back into town, finishing up a recent ride, I had taken note of the five vehicles in the left lane. But what transpired next almost overwhelmed me; the suddenness of it all is still hard to comprehend.

A minivan — third in line — abruptly left its place in the queue and charged forward in order to pass the two in front. In the lane I happened to be occupying! I'm sure if I had possessed a mirror at the time, it would have reflected back a look of disbelief — quite possibly horror — in my eyes.

It occurred so fast, there was hardly time to even digest the situation. I've always made it a habit to ride my bicycle as close to the edge of the road surface as possible. And doing so on this particular occasion probably saved my life.

I thought about going into the ditch, but for some reason I stayed on the pavement. Honestly, I don't know why. Then there it was, the front end of the speeding minivan right beside me; my carbon-framed steed no match for this two-ton piece of screaming steel. When it was over, I could hardly believe I hadn't become a bloody hood ornament. My flashing front light — mounted on my helmet — didn't do me much good that day.

I enjoy presenting this blog, sharing my experiences with you. The vast majority of the episodes are light and entertaining, gleaned from the saddle of my bicycle. And then there is the occasional nightmare. I'm always on the lookout for topics, but this was one I could have done without — that's for sure.

I was, indeed, nearly killed, or at least severely injured. In no way am I attempting to be overly dramatic, but I was only inches from catastrophe. These kind of moments certainly get me contemplating an exit from road riding. Please, stay safe!

My cyclocross and fat bikes ... Time for "snow machines?"

MILEAGE UPDATE: I'm currently at 6,595. Only 405 more miles to reach 7,000. Long rides this past week. A snowy Wednesday — the backdrop for today's blog photograph — found me on both my cyclocross and fat bikes. No rest in my quest!

'Thought for the day'

"The world lies right beyond the handlebars of any bicycle that I happen to be on anywhere from New York Bay to the Vallee de Chevreuse." — Daniel Behrman, author of "The Man Who Loved Bicycles." He actually died in Rangeley, Maine, in 1990.

From "Words To Ride By ... Thoughts on Bicycling" by Michael Carabetta (Chronicle Books, 2017)

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