Becoming a Biker?
For reasons that are not clear, even to me, I have purchased a motorcycle. My safety training starts in a couple of weeks, and will be completed by October 1, 2006.
So far I own a full face helmet, riding gloves (with armor on knuckle area) and a Honda Rebel 250 bike .
As my friend — a serious motorcycle rider, and seriously BAD influence on me — described it, the Honda 250 is a bike for “girls and short men.” (I am six feet tall).
When I mentioned that to my LOVING wife she paused for a moment then said: “Which are you?”
I replied: “You have no idea how deep my REAL mid-life crisis is, do you honey?”
We both laughed, but I’m afraid she may now the wrong idea. Especially when I reminded her that our health insurance at work handles just about anything imaginable.
“How is it going so far?” you ask.
Mixed. I have ridden this smallish learners bike three times, and have only dumped it twice, riding here on my 2 1/2 acre property.
My first spill happened while riding up a grassy knoll, street (not knobby off road) tires, when I made a slow, tight turn and I went SPLAT.
No harm, no foul. My pride was slightly damaged, but not my almost new bike. I picked it up, started the engine and rode back to the garage where I immediately parked it.
Naturally my wife saw the whole thing.
Yesterday I suited up with my Darth Vader looking full-face black helmet and mean looking gloves and mounted my steed.
I could not get the damn thing to start!
My wife had insisted I should read the owner’s manual, but I figure that’s the sort of pathetic behavior one might expect from say, girls or short men.
I persevered. Eventually, without opening the manual, I discovered the engine kill switch was on. That condition allows the bike to crank, but with no spark, it obviously won’t start. Very confusing.
Having solved my small technical problem, I decided I’d had enough experience) riding slow here on the ranch. It was now time to take my bike out on the street.
We live in a semi-rural area. There’s little traffic on a Saturday morning, so this was not a stupid as you might otherwise assume.
I fired up my bike, sitting in an opened-ended breezeway, and headed out. Directly ahead was the remains of a pile of sand we had delivered a few years ago when the grand kids were sandbox age.
There wasn’t much sand left, but it was exactly enough so that when I treed to ride my bike through teh patch of sand. Naturally I was going slow. While making a gentle right turn, you guessed it… I dropped my beloved bike a SECOND time. Again, no injury resulted.
For some weird reason (a sixth sense?) my wife came out and saw me sprawled with one leg under the bike.
I picked myself up, shoved the bike upright, climbed aboard and rode away, just like I knew what I was doing.
I opened the front gate, and eased out on the (paved) street.
When riding straight on an empty, smooth paved road, I ride like a pro!
I left the visor of my helmet up so I felt the wind on my face. I managed to shift from first into second gear. Later I shifted into third gear.
I practically flew down the empty street at 35 miles an hour.
I rode through a nearby small new subdivision, successfully negotiating four turns while not once dropping the bike.
It won’t be long before I can give this Honda Rebel 250 to my wife. Maybe I’ll buy a Ural with a sidecar.
It should REALLY be difficult to dump a three wheeled contraption like that.