This past Saturday was a glorious day; the first sunny Saturday we’ve had in NYC after an unusually cold and snowy winter. It was a perfect day for a bike ride along the Hudson river with my friends Kim and Amy.
We had fun riding among all the folks out enjoying the day: runners, other bikers, roller bladers, people out for a stroll…and that one little boy who totally changed my day.
I saw him out of the corner of my eye and I couldn’t believe what was happening. As only a little boy can do, he took off running in the opposite direction from which he faced, not looking…just running. Just as he reached me, I slammed on the brakes. Two bad moves. I went flying, the bike somersaulted over me. I hit the ground HARD and my bike landed on top of me. I was stunned. I lay there for a minute to collect myself. My friends helped me sit up. I really was seeing those proverbial stars. Then I saw a single star (cheap pun). He asked me if I was okay. Hugh Jackman. The little boy –who apologized profusely– was with Hugh and his son.
When I noticed people taking pictures I thought to myself “omg, I must really be hurt”. It took me a minute to realize that it wasn’t my picture they wanted. Hugh couldn’t have been nicer. He hung around until he was sure I was okay…hence the picture with him which, in his own words, “was the least he could do”.
Here’s what I learned from this bike accident:
- You just never know...
- What it feels like to ache e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e, and with a headache that lasts 24+ hours
- It’s true what they say about time slowing down. As I was flying and falling, it felt like I was watching it in slow motion. A very weird sensation.
- The world’s cutest Yorkie may have already had his last bike ride. Like a crazy dog lady, I sometimes ride my bike with my dog in a knapsack on my back. He loves it. I didn’t have him with me that day and I shudder to think how he would have fared in the accident.
- Wear the damn bike helmut all the time. Really. All the time. I was so unbelievably lucky that day. While I always wear my helmet when riding in traffic, I’m a lot less diligent when riding along the bike path because “what could happen”? Well, now I know what can happen and if I hadn’t been wearing my helmet when I crashed to the ground, this story probably would have had a much different outcome.
- Wear lipstick at all times because you never know when you’ll have your picture taken.
So as I spent most of my Sunday resting from what I’m told is probably a mild concussion, I was struck by how many of my friends were more impressed with my photo with Hugh Jackman than they were that I somersaulted over my bike and didn’t break anything in the fall.