It was a good day to crash my bike. In fact, if I was going to have crashed any day this year, then I’m glad it was on Saturday. That’s not to say that I enjoy pain. My leg is bruised my hips are sore and my elbow f#%king hurts. I scraped off a huge chunk of my skin when I fell off my bike and when I woke up the next day my arm was stuck to the sheets and there was blood all over the bed. It could have been a lot worse.

travelling with a motorbike in Indonesia

Normally when I drive I’m an idiot. I am one of those fools who drive around on a moped with shorts, sandals and a t-shirt, my helmet perched on my head like a baseball cap. I realise it’s stupid and I’ve seen enough people with horrible scars and worse to know that shoes, jeans, a jacket and a full face helmet is the minimum you should be wearing when you ride a motorbike. It’s just when it’s hot and the sun is shining, a T-shirt, shorts and sandals is a lot more appealing. Luckily on Saturday, for perhaps the first time this year, I decided to be sensible.

indonesian road

I wish that the accident was more cinematic than it was. I could have been accelerating up the hill, the wind on my face enjoying the sunny day when an old woman with a zimmerframe stepped out onto the road to pick up her purse. That my lightning fast reactions caused me to miss the old woman by inches, but unfortunately the bike hit a patch of oil that sent me flying through the air before I landed flat on my face next to the asphalt with cars rolling past me. Unfortunately none of that actually happened. Instead I was hot sweaty and annoyed. In a desperate attempt to overtake the endless line of cars and lorries that puff out poisonous black smoke, which covers my lungs as thoroughly as if I’d just downed a pint pitch, I lost control of the bike and went flying.

This was the fourth time that I’ve been in an accident in the last two years. That’s not very good odds, but luckily none of the accidents has been very bad. The worst I’ve had to deal with is sliding under a bus, which actually come to think about it was pretty bad and very stupid. That’s the thing, now that I come to think about it, idiocy and impatience have been the main factor in every single accident that I have had.

traffic in indonesia

Limping timidly home on my bike, rarely going over 40kmh I vowed this was the last time that I would drive recklessly. From here on out I’ll drive slowly and carefully. I will make sure not to accelerate like an idiot in a desperate attempt to overtake the hideous polluting buses (that look from behind like they are powered by coal and not gasoline). I hope that I listen to myself this time…