I was talking with a friend last night. We're fairly new friends, having just met about 6 months ago. We're on a committee together and it's just been a real joy getting to know her better each time we're at a committee meeting or event. Last night she was talking with Gene and all of sudden she made a b-line to where I was sitting and said excitedly, "I DIDN'T KNOW YOU ARE A BIKER CHICK!!!" Well! Let me tell you about riding a motorcycle, chica!
My new friend recently went on a poker run on the back of a very cool Harley Davidson with a mutual biker friend and she had the light in her eyes last night that tells me she's probably going to end up on her own motorcycle one day.
Here's how it happened with me.
When I met Gene just a little over 9 years ago, he took us for a couple of spins on his old Silverwing. I hadn't been on a motorcycle since I was a teenager (more about that below). He took us to downtown Portland once and then a ride over towards Mount St. Helen . I loved the ride the minute we rolled. When Gene moved to Yuma, he brought his Silverwing and a Goldwing. We did a lot of riding time on both until they had some problems and we ended up with another motorcycle we bought while in Oregon on one of our trips. I was happy to ride on the back for a long time. That is ... until I started seeing women motorcycle riders. There are lot of them in Arizona. In fact, there are a lot of them everywhere. I had a very good friend I worked with at the courthouse who was a rider. She looked so cool on a bike and I noticed her eyes lit up when she talked about it.
I got an idea that maybe I'd like to ride my own motorcycle. When I said it out loud, Gene said, "why don't you go take the motorcycle safety class, get your endorsement and then decide if you really want to ride your own". Good idea. That's what I did. It was an easy class for me because I had a little Honda 125 when I was a teenager that dad let me ride out in the field in back of our place. I already knew how to shift gears. That's probably the hardest thing to learn and I figured it was much like riding a bicycle, once you learn, you never forget.
I went to the 2-weekend class, got my endorsement and needed to decide if I was really serious about this riding thing. It's one thing to ride circles in the church parking lot and a whole 'nother thing to take your wheels out on the road. Gene invited me to take his m/c for a spin right after my class and I thought to myself, "you'd better do it, Susan ... or you will have so much fear that you'll never get on a bike again". I took that spin and came home and said, "I want my own bike".
I bought my Honda 750 Aero from an attorney I knew from working at the courthouse. He had purchased it brand new, only rode it 560 miles and decided it was too dangerous for him to be riding as he had two young daughters, no medical insurance and blah, blah, blah. That happens to a lot of people who buy motorcycles apparently. We got a screaming good deal on it and I'm guessing I've logged about 7,000 miles on it.
I'm glad I didn't let fear take over in making the decision to do something that has brought so much joy into my life. Since we moved to Tri-Cities, we have had endless roads to travel and have barely scratched the surface of places to explore. We have some excellent riding buddies (you know who you are!) who call us on Sunday mornings and say, "hey, wanna go for a little spin"? We don't talk about riding much this time of year because it's too depressing and it just makes winter seem longer. But, I'm glad my friend brought it up last night. She's a go-getter ... I can see her on shiny wheels, all dressed up in leathers with her blonde hair flying out of the back of a helmet and a great big grin on her face. That was me ... just a couple of years ago and I still love it as much as the first day I rolled. Ride on!