Systeme D

21 August 2006


I fell off my bike on Friday, about here.

About 15 miles earlier, we'd started doing the C2C, the Lake District-Newcastle cycle route. I could post the traditional picture of dipping our wheels in the water at Whitehaven, but it'd make me cry, so I won't.

At the end of the railway track section, we caught up another group of cyclists. I was actually finding it a bit difficult riding with so many other cyclists on the road, especially as my riding style is a bit stop-start (race up hill, stop to get breath back at top, race up next hill, etc.). Finally I thought I'd managed to get past them.

Unfortunately I didn't see the little "turn right" sign at the bottom of the hill until too late. Put back brake on, forget that bike has just been serviced and back brake now stops the bike instantly, skid along the rather slippy surface, fall off.

Nastiest accident I've ever had (that said, I've not had too many since a spate about 20 years ago). One tooth lost, another so broken it had to be removed, another wobbly. Chin gashed on tarmac. Lower lip heavily buggered when I bit into it, by the look of things. And most serious of all, jaw broken at one end and dislocated a bit.

An ambulance took me to West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven, who stitched up the immediate bleeding bits then despatched me up the coast (no, not by boat) to Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle. Over the weekend, they took some X-rays, took some more X-rays, removed a tooth, took some X-rays, and eventually put some bars in front of each row of teeth, connected by fairly hefty elastic bands. The aim of this is to "encourage" my jaws to align properly again. Side-effects are quite a lot of pain and difficulty eating. Obviously it's worth it but it does bloody hurt.

Consequently I'm not capable of much at the moment. In addition, I really do look awful. I'm no oil painting at the best of times but at the moment I look like a cross between an extra from Night of the Living Dead and someone who's just been flattened by George Foreman. No, George Formby. No, hang on...

(insert PayPal button for dental treatment fund here)

All the staff at Cumberland Infirmary were excellent, as was Anna, of course. Just remind me never to have my brakes serviced again.


That sounds really nasty. Did they give you lots of fun drugs to make up for everything else?

Posted by Duncan MacGregor on 22.8.06 22:41

Oh yes, all the "recreational" drugs you could wish for - codeine, paracetamol, bastard-strength ibuprofen. Apparently if I neck the whole lot of codeine in one sitting then I turn into Hermann Goering.

Posted by Richard on 23.8.06 08:35

I suggest you try some nice single malt instead of the codeine, that way you'll turn into Winston Churchill instead, though the complete metamorphosis may require a cigar as well.

Posted by Duncan MacGregor on 23.8.06 12:31

chin up old boy (sorry couldn't resist).. you'll soon mend ;)

hope things turn out better for you next time.

Posted by paul on 26.8.06 22:06

Ouch. That must smart. Get getter shoon!

Posted by Jon Ramsey on 3.9.06 15:13

You poor, sore bastard. Probably the scrumpy residues slowed your response times. ATL.

Posted by Hey Mr Bassman on 28.9.06 14:34

Add a comment

Your name:

E-mail address: 


your comment. (E-mail addresses will not be visible, but a server-based mail link will be provided. To guard against spam, no comments which include 'http' or 'www' will be published.)