Off to a good start. Had a bit of a cathartic moment last year – I realised that although I’m getting older, I have no significant debts, no dependants and plenty of spare time. Three of the main reasons I’ve previously avoided getting into biking for near on 20 years, so time to re-evaluate. I booked in and got my Learner Permit through Stay Upright in Hoppers Crossing (Vic) in mid January, and have been sorting my meagre finances out trying to figure what I should get, what I can afford, and looking at what’s available. Got a call letting me know a new trade-in had just arrived at Doncaster BMW, and might be worth a look. I looked, a mate test-rode it for me, and I dropped the cash. My new baby showed up in time for the (awesome) weekend. A 2003 BMW F650CS Scarver. Some say it’s ugly, others like it – I think I’m in love! Motored around the local back streets for an hour or so just remembering the basics, before heading to a nearby empty car park. Great place to practice the basics for a day 1 learner. Rode around in circles at various speeds, some slow turns, some fast accelerations, some (light) emergency stops etc. Got home and peeled the suit off... Don’t think I’ve EVER sweated as much in my life! Admittedly it was 33 degrees and I’m far from relaxed – even so, there wasn’t anything I took off that wasn’t dripping! Day two, my long-term biker mate finally gets his classic 60’s Kawa working again, and we go for a cruise. Another hot day, but we weren’t just doing laps of a car park this time. Some small stretches of Beach Road and just playing follow-the-leader through some leafy back streets. I didn’t crash. I didn’t die. What I did do is have a great time, and confirmed to myself that I’ve made the right move. Should have done this years ago! Cheers.