Been lurking for a while but James' post prompted me to come out. It's a long one, so settle down and get comfy! Started cycling into work a month ago and have had a few close shaves, but I've been good...namely stopping at red lights, not cutting up buses etc. With this in mind I pulled up behind a Routemaster bus yesterday (in a bus lane and not near a stop) at some traffic lights on the Edgware Road close to Paddington. I could have got up the inside of the bus but I thought no, he's gonna turn left for the station and I'll just p**s him off if I do. So I stayed behind the bus in full view of the driver. I've been using straps on the pedals so I was holding on to the adjacent long run of railings for balance and to give me some speed away from the lights rather than take one foot out and stand over the bike. Ok, fine, no problem so far until... Woman decides to get off bus. She looks towards the front and sees the long run of railings, turns, looks behind me and sees a shorter run and steps off. As I lift my hand off to let her pass I put my hand out to steady myself against the back grab rail of the bus...just as the lights change and bus moves. I know, I should've taken my foot out! Hand finds mid air and rest of body follows. I can only liken it to Mrs Doyle falling off the window sill in the Father Ted TV programme. Panic then sets in as there's a lot of traffic behind me (and another cyclist) and I start to imagine being run over! Woman walks off muttering sorry, cyclist behind gives me a funny look and nearest motorist is revving his engine to get past. Thanks people. I move forward where I can check the bike out for damage and to get the heck out of the way. Bus lanes have that really fine red tarmac that gives excellent grip and excellent skin damage! My kneecap was completely grazed (believe me that's a big area!), cut on thigh and sore ribs where I hit the handlebars. So my list of things to be wary of when cycling in London just got bigger, Black Taxi drivers, 4WD vehicle drivers, Bus drivers, white van man...the two new additions for today are Routemaster passengers and Bus Lane surfaces, they cause a nasty rash! Thanks to my padded cycling mitts my hands were not damaged at all, surely a must for city riding. After checking the bike over (just the front mudguard hanging off) I discovered my Cateye computer was missing. As I walked back down the footpath with blood running down my leg and congealing in my shoe I saw it lying where I'd come off, right in the middle of the lane. No matter how good or bad you think those Cateye's are, they can't take a pounding from buses, cars and vans! Total wreck. I think I may be able to save the battery! What was nice though was one of the staff from the nearby Starbucks was outside having a ciggie or eyeing up the passing ladies. He came over to me and asked me about four times if I was okay. Thanks mate, there are a few decent people around! My boss (ever the comedian) has now put the story round that I was hanging onto the back off the bus trying to break my speed record of 43.7mph (never been that fast) when my hand slipped and I fell! You gotta laugh! Wonder if I should invest in trousers or kneepads lol! Happy cycling Bob. remove nospam to reply.