So tonight I go out to Winfield Prairie Path Cycle to do the group ride with ABD. Man, I was in the zone tonight, no falling off, stayed up front the entire time. I fell back to help another rider catch back up, which is odd for me seeing as I am such a newb. So we get caught back up almost and get nailed by a red light. We make sure it is clear and then go across, great descent, 3 of us in the slipstream at about 30 mph. Once we finish the descent, we have a small, but constant ascent for about a mile, so I go ahead, do a shift, coast for a few feet, and go to hammer a bit to start the ascent, and boom, there goes the chain. So I fall off the back to stop and get the chain back on. Then I get going again and the group had gotten about a half mile ahead of me. I was making good time, climbing the hill pretty good considering the end of the ride was getting closer and closer. I can see the group ahead of me about 1/4 mile ahead. Good, I will catch up with them at the light and we will be back together again. Then it happens.
A funeral procession coming out of the private golf course. They had a car blocking the road so the cars could make it out. I could have still made it through, but I am one of those emotional types who thought it would be better if I stopped, dismounted, and paid a little respect to the person and the family. I could see the line was long as hell, and if I waited for the whole thing I would have been there for probably 5 minutes or longer. So I waited for 10 cars to go, as that is typically the immediate family, and seeing that they are coming out of a private, expensive, golf course, the rest are just people who shared the same interest and knew the person. So I get back to going, and just miss the light to catch up with the group. Now I have to wait and there was no catching back up.
Anyways, is there a proper thing to do in this instance? Do you just say forget it and ride through? Do you stop and be a bit respectful? When I was in the military, it was customary to get out of the car and pop a salute.
I've only had a procession come up behind me once. I curb hopped to the sidewalk and rode very slowly there until the coast was clear. Then I pulled a draft off of the funeral home's car on the back of the procession.
There's a safety consideration too - there's normally more than 1 escort vehicle (car or motorcycle) and you never know when one will be speeding alongside the procession to leapfrog to the next intersection. A motorcycle escort was killed in Indy not long ago when someone in the procession waived a vehicle through the line - right into the path of the motorcycle escort.
I was in my car headed to work on a 4 lane 55 MPH country highway (US 40 for those who know) when a funeral procession pulled out in front of me. They proceded to go 35 miles an hour for the next 20 miles before they turned off. I had left early for work so I had plenty of time and stayed behind them, but come on.. there should be a limit on that.