It's been ten days since my last blog post and my first ride to work, so I thought I'd post an update just in case anyone was wondering how it was going.
Since my first wobbly, nervous jaunt along the Eastern Freeway I've ridden in every day for a total of seven times. In that time I've experienced various extremes of weather because, well, this is Melbourne after all. I've had 40+ degrees, gusty winds, cold and rain. No actual downpours yet but a pretty fair variety, and it's all been good.
Every day, the traffic has been getting slightly heavier as people have been returning to work after their holidays, and that's also been a good experience for me because my traffic management skills have grown along with the increased traffic density.
I'm not going to pretend I'm suddenly an expert, because I'm not. I still make mistakes, but I try to learn from them, and I try to be as safe as I can while I learn. So far, so good.
What have I learnt? Well, here's a quick summary:
Mostly, I've learnt that I have a lot to learn, and the best thing I can do is to practice, and to notice when I do something wrong/dumb and fix it.
- Traffic is much more impatient and unpredictable during peak hour
- Freeways are generally very boring
- My speedo is out by about 10%
- I'm crap at wet weather cornering and I need to work on it (I'm overly cautious)
- Filtering is challenging on a cruiser with wide handlebars but extremely rewarding when done right
- Unexpected strong wind gusts on the freeway suck
- Some people really can't stand to be stuck behind a learner, even if the learner isn't doing anything wrong
- Taxi drivers are complete shitheads
In other news, I've booked in for my licence test on Tuesday, so I can get rid of the L plate and stop making myself a target. Fingers crossed.