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I've been accepted into the 'biker community"

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by maplegum, Oct 11, 2010.

  1. For those of you that are interested, I’d like to share a kind of learners riding diary with everyone here. It will be great for me to read back on so I can see how I am coming along with my skills and techniques.

    As mentioned in my thread in the introduction area, I have been a passenger on the back of my husband’s Buell for some time now. Quite happy to be the passenger too. I trust his riding and he has always been very cautious with me on the back.

    He has been at me to get my own bike and licence for some time now. I have always said that I was not interested. Too scared and no real desire. That was until 2 weeks ago after a drive out to Marysville in the car. He kept mentioning how nice the trip would be on bikes. Yes dear, I know the trip would be nice on bikes, but I’m not interested!!! Well, by the end of the day, I had a change of heart. I’m still not sure what happened there and how I now have my own bike!

    48 hours later, I bought a bike. LOL. A Suzuki Intruder 250, 2007. I love her!
    A few days later I’m booked in for a 2 day learners course at HART. Passed the course, came home with my learners. Oh man, what have I done!?
    My husband has now created a monster. I am obsessed with riding. I think he is scared now.

    I was very anxious to try out my bike as soon as I got my learners, but the weather was really bad and my husband was also sick to the point of not being able to ride. He NEVER says no to a ride so I knew he really wasn’t feeling great.

    Woke up Saturday morning to a dry day, seemed ideal for a ride! We suited up and took the maiden voyage around the estate. I seemed to being ok other than making right hand turns from a complete stop. After 15 minutes of riding through the estate I wanted to go further. We headed out onto the main road! It’s a long winding mountain road with a 80klm/hour speed limit. We had the road to ourselves for a while with me riding along at around 60 klm/hr. I have never been faster than 30 klm/hr so 60 felt sooooo fast! Then, some impatient idiot drove up behind us and started tooting his horn as we were riding slowly. That really rattled me, but I did not speed up, just stayed at the speed I was comfortable with. Hubby put out his hand to tell the driver to back off. It was pretty nerve raking having someone right behind us like that.

    We made it into Blackwood in one piece. We pulled off to a side road and drove around the twisting roads at low speeds. That was fun! Stopped at the river for a breather where my hubby told me that I was doing great and not to be distressed about other cars.

    Off we headed again around the back streets of Blackwood which includes plenty of hills. This is where I found I struggled. I was riding along in 3rd gear, felt the bike needed to change down a gear, but I stupidly took the bike up a gear into 4th! Stalled the bike, on the hill, in the middle of the road!!! My heart was racing but I knew I had to make get that bike off the road. I had to restart the bike on the hill and try to take off again. I stalled the bike so many times and felt myself getting so distressed worrying a car would come up behind me. I stopped, took a deep breath and caught my thoughts. Hubby was right there beside me, giving me advice and support. I managed to get the bike going again, not very smoothly, but at least I was moving! LOL.

    On the ride home, I managed to ride at the speed limit of 80klm/hr and felt comfortable with that. No outrageous drivers expecting me to speed. Thank goodness.

    That was a 30klm round trip and my husband was soooo proud of me! He never expected me to get out of the estate on my 1st day, let alone ride the mountain! He said that he didn’t see anything I did that alarmed him.
    I went home and slept for 2 hours after that ride! I was so exhausted.
    Woke to find a beautiful sunny morning on Sunday, perfect bike riding weather! My neighbours wanted to join us for a ride but my husband said he would check with me 1st to see if I was comfortable having others ride with me. Sure! As long as they didn’t expect too much from me and that they knew it was going to be a slow ride. Such cool guys, they really looked after me on our ride.

    We headed into Trentham. Such a pretty trip. (the boys tell me that ‘bikers’ don’t say pretty, it’s awesome) LOL. I am so blessed to live in such a gorgeous area. 5 bikes in total with me 2nd last, hubby riding behind me. As we got to Trentham, all the boys made a right hand turn and did that parking along the kerb side with a ton of other bikes. I have never parked a bike like that before!!!! I could just imagine dropping my bike and the domino effect taking place. I turned left with my husband following. I stopped up the road and my hubby laughed knowing that I didn’t want to park with the others. We parked elsewhere and walked across the road!

    One of the guys on the ride could not believe that it was only my 2nd ride. He said I was a natural and was blown away that I took on such a ride so soon. I never felt nervous at all and just took it easy and like I mentioned, the boys really looked out for me. As we ate our lunch in Trentham, I told the boys that I believe I have now been accepted into the biker community as bike riders going in the opposite direction gave me the friendly ‘nod’... Yep, I’m one of them now!

    The boys had to head home but I wasn’t ready to go home! I wanted more riding. Hubby was asking “are you sure you want to do more?”. YES! I mentioned that I wanted to practice my kerb side parking and also making right hand turns from a t- intersection from a complete stop. We headed into the Ballan train station car park which was perfect as the carpark was empty. I think I now have the turns sorted out – a lot more smooth now. I’m still scared of the kerb side parking though, I’d like more practice. I did a pile of emergency breaking too.

    Then headed over to visit a friend and back home again. It was a 100klm round trip and I didn’t feel as tired as I did the day before. I felt that I gained a lot of confidence during this ride, still not comfortable with any speeds above 80klm/hr so I will stay clear of the freeways for a while.
    Well, that concludes my very 1st days on my bike. She looked after me well.



  2. There is a community, with nods and stuff? I have been excluded all this time...

    P.S. You referred to your bike as "her". Are you sure the bike is a girl? I mean, did you do the exhaust pipe check to confirm?
  3. Welcome to another part of the world,once you are in there is no going back.riding is addictive and there is no known cure.Even driving a Volvo for a few yeas with kids in the back wont quell the feeling.
    Take care out there,and keep going as you are...at your own pace.
  4. Maplegum! Well done indeed. :)

    Be careful with your confidence. At this stage it is still fragile.

    Give yourself time, so that your confidence doesn't get ahead of your a ability.
    Keep you head in the game and beware the intoxication, riding can bring. You can get ahead of yourself without realizing.
    It happens all the time, and nearly always ends badly...so keep head in the game, and allow for a gradual build up of skills and experience. :)