2003-08-23 - 7:20 p.m.
What the fucking fuck is going on?
Let me tell you the story of my bike ride. I was about twelve miles in tonight on a planned 25 mile ride when my right quadricep started to seize. I didn't want to stop, so I stretched it as best I could, downshifted a little, and kept going. But I wasn't moving as fast as usual. And apparently to a select group of men, that makes me prey.
I came around a blind corner on a narrow part of the trail and found four men blocking my way. I pulled so hard on the brakes that the rear tire fishtailed. One man grabbed the bike handlebars; another shoulder. They were young - about 18 or 20 is my guess - and spoke only in what sounded like Russian. I started to fall off the bike. One of them stood directly in front of me and started to run his hands up my sweaty, salty thighs.
I didn't know what to do. I've been in bad situations before, but nothing against this many people. I don't carry any weapons, and I wouldn't have been able to access them anyway. I wouldn't have gotten away by myself. What saved me was the appearance of two riders I'd been chatting with earlier. One of them, a big burly guy, pulled off the man who was touching my legs. I think the other one started hitting. There was some yelling in English and Russian, then the four men took off toward the river.
The two riders stayed with me until I was able to get back on the bike. They rode with me for a little while to make sure I was okay. I wish I'd had the presence of mind to ask their names, but all I could think of was getting home. My quad was still seizing, my head was hurting, and I didn't want to cry in front of a couple of strangers. So I told them I was fine.
When I got home I immediately got into the shower, to scrub off the feeling of unwelcome hands. I know this feeling. I've been assaulted before, but not as an adult. I started to cry, and then I called some girlfriends for support. Stopped crying, got dressed, and sat down to write this.
All that I can think right now is that I need to go get as drunk as possible, as quickly as possible. I know that's not the adult way to deal with this. There should be cops; there should be purchases of mace and a noisemaker. Later. Right now I want to hide.
Comments: Speak your piece!
former / latter