Dedicated to the women who RIDE THEIR OWN motorcycles  

SHOULD I RIDE MY OWN?

by tsladaritz

My husband asked for a motorcycle for his 40th birthday. I said, "Sure". Everyone kept asking him how much begging he had to do for me to say yes and I would just look at them. After riding on the back of his for a few months he started asking me if I wanted to try riding. At first I could not decide if I wanted to be known as a woman that rode a motorcycle. I have always been very self conscious and remembered seeing women that ride with tattoos and acting like wild things. Would people see me as some kind of wild thing? Did it matter?

Finally I decided I better try riding. He was having too much fun! He took me to the nearby church parking lot and explained the controls to me. Then he pushed me around and let me just get the feel of steering and braking. He rides an Intruder Volusia 800 so he was really worn out from pushing me! But he wanted to introduce me in a gentle manner so he was very patient with me. After I knew how to accelerate, brake and steer he let go. When I realized he had let go and was just standing there I felt like the 5 year old whose dad just let go of the bicycle! But I kept going and managed to stop. Then I tried to turn and down I went, on the left side of the bike. We tried going straight some more and I was doing so well - until I stopped beside him and the pavement had a slight slope to it. Down I went on the right side! Now his new bike had scratches on each side. But he just shook his head and let me keep riding around that parking lot.

I started checking ads and found a smaller Suzuki that I can handle much better. We drove an hour away to look at it and he ended up riding it home. I kept trying to ride it and falling. I drove out of my uphill driveway right into the ditch across the street. I drove straight across the road at a dead-end instead of turning. I slid down in a parking lot where there was some gravel. Then...I took the MSF course! After that I quit falling down and have graduated to the real road. I remember the first time I rode on the road without falling. We live in the country and I leaned into turns, talked myself through switchbacks, and sailed down hills with towering pines on either side. I felt so excited that I could ride now without falling down! I could turn, stop, start and not panic if a dog was barking or a car was coming.

Because I am a newer rider I do not go far from home and I don't ride much without my coach (hubby). But I can do it now and I know I will get better as time goes by. I do enjoy getting out on the road and seeing the country in a whole new way.

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From tsladaritz: "I have not been riding for very long and am still hesitant to venture far from home. But I will probably never forget the first time I got on a motorcycle all by myself."

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