Yesterday, I was riding with a couple of friends. I was leading the way home on the highway and zoned out for a few minutes. It had been an early morning and I was a little tired. I wasn’t really thinking about much of anything, and I wasn’t paying as much attention to the road as I should have been.
We were behind a van, not tail-gating, but following in the middle lane. I’d seen a little white older sedan in front of the van when we changed lanes, but I couldn’t see it from my current vantage point.
All of a sudden the van started to fish tail. There was some paper or something in the air, I think having come from the white sedan. In order to avoid a potential accident in front of me, I flapped my arm down and up to indicate to my two followers to slow down and then I changed lanes to the empty right lane.
There was no accident and the van quickly regained control, but it was a little wake-up call. I realized that I hadn’t been fully present. I usually don’t sit behind larger vehicles because I dislike not being able to see what is going on down the road. Perhaps if I had been more aware earlier, I would have had us change lanes sooner for better look-far viewing of the highway in front of us.
It wasn’t even a close-call, but it was noticeable to me. Later, one of my following motorcyclists asked me, “What was up with that van? I’ll bet the driver was looking for something under his seat….” Yeah, what a jerk-face. But that didn’t stop me from knowing that if I’d been more on the ball, perhaps she wouldn’t have asked that question because the van wouldn’t have been an issue to us.