Late last Friday night, on the mean wet-leaf strewn pavements of Manchester, I slipped and landed on my right hand. Pain, spectacular bruising, impressive swelling. Very British. Didn’t want to make a fuss. Soldiered on. Ibuprofen. Visiting friends, taking in sights and culture. Back to work Monday. Resigned to not cycling so buy weekly zone 1 & 2 tube pass. Struggle on using left hand for mouse and non-fluent typing. Swelling subsiding but thumb still extremely sore and not very bendy. Friday day off. GP fully booked. Walk to walk-in-clinic and advised to go to A&E for X-ray. Pleasant afternoon in waiting room reading Jacob’s Room by Virginia Woolf. Amazing patient NHS staff. X-rayed. Upshot: fracture near base of my thumb. Temporary plaster cast and back next week to see hand specialist. Spirits low. Looking at 6 weeks no cycling. Worse, left hand is useless at writing. HAVE to write my journal every day. Visceral need. Hold pen between index and middle finger right hand and scrawl. Develop Eimear McBride style, terse incomplete phrases. Fracture will heal. Bone will be stronger. Poor maligned left hand.