I can barely bring myself to say this. My Triumph Daytona was my last, best hope, for biking. I fear it failed.
I know from the outside this seems incredible, 5 weeks after getting my dream super toy and being over the moon with it, and I still love it, but I think the bottom line is there is no place in my life for a motorbike right now.
After the painfully obsessive bit, and getting all the kit, I’ve only been out on it about 4 times. I went out today to a quiet spot with a big roundabout just before a dead end, so no traffic goes there, to practice some cornering technique. I was rubbish, and a bit embarrassed, so only did two laps then went off for a ride. As I was riding it struck me. All the arguments that *proved* this was the bike I *must have* were all wrong. I don’t have the skills to ride knee-down, and when I was out on the ride I was having to watch out for speed limits as my job is on the line. I’ve got an awesome, beautiful bike, that I can’t, and don’t, use. The only thing I could think of would be going to track days. So a pointless bit of a pretty I use twice or three times a year. I have nowhere to go. I have absolutely no need for a motorbike.
I’ve been getting regular 5 shifts one week, 6 shifts the next at work (legal maximum) to make sure we have enough money while Wendy is on the sick. I did a calculation the other day and realised, even with Wendy off, we still are the best off we’ve ever been. I was window shopping the dream bikes of my life.
My birth year (1966) Triumph Bonneville (£10K)
A BSA A10 from the 50s (£6K)
A classic CB750/four Honda from the 70s (£6K)
And my guilty pleasure, a Honda CX500 in great condition, from the 80s (£4K)
These are all bikes I’ve spent my life drooling over (well, maybe not the CX, but I do like the ugly beasts) and I’ve suddenly realised if I really wanted to I could afford to go out and buy one. And I’ve lost interest. It’s painfully ironic.
I’m toying with the idea of a Harley. I can think of several good arguments why that would work. Slow, so won’t endanger my licence, you need zero skills to ride one because of point 1 (and the fact they aren’t built to go around corners) and you don’t have to be going anywhere, it’s a Zen Mindfulness bike, the whole fun is in that very moment, pottering along, feeling cool .
But I think I’m fooling myself. Again.
Wendy and the bikers from Twitter are saying to think it over, but I’m having a sad moment of clarity. If I’m having to force myself to go for rides because I can’t see any point to it, and I have nowhere to go, it might just be time to sell up and quit. Now the madness of my obsession is no longer upon me I am just feeling guilty and stupid for buying new leathers and boots. I won’t lose money on the bike, but I feel bad that I was so lost in the obsession.
I am thinking of the Harley dream, pottering, slowly and coolly to the Lakes, riding around, coming home… 3 or 4 hours of motorway, (which is just a busman’s holiday for me) wind buffeting on my face and neck, on my own, just because I have to go *somewhere*.
Hmmm. I *want* a Harley, but I think the bottom line is I just don’t need, and won’t use, a motorbike. This makes me sadder than you’d think.
It’s not all doom and gloom though. I have an exciting new madness.
I was idly looking last week and you can get a 31′ full-on yacht for under £9K! This one:
I think that would be great to nip around the coast and through the Scottish Lochs and such. Wendy is, predictably, less than enthusiastic. She say’s we’re sure to go a watery grave. I say we might not, and it might be fun.
Possibly that would be a bit ambitious for my first go at sailing, anyway. So I did some research, and I’ve found a learner yacht that’s designed to fit on top of a car roof rack (hence the name:Topper) and I can get a second hand one from £150.
And, as it’s a one person craft, Wendy has fewer reasons to hate the idea.
I’ve emailed about lessons, but so far no response. As I said to our Lisa, how hard can it be? Pointy end forward, wind, crack on. Ours is the blood of Drake, Nelson, the captain of the Titanic…
I’ll give it a go around the Lake district. If I can crack it there, then they are sea worthy, and it’s only 18 miles to Liverpool and the sea. If I like it could be a fun hobby, if not I sell up and haven’t lost anything.
In short, I may be getting too old,boring, and sensible for motorbikes, but there’s a whole world of other fun stuff to try.
I’ve had a really bad couple of weeks. After being fine for months I had a mild spell of plague weakness for a week, then got battered by a really bad dose for another week. It hit me that hard I thought I’d got the new variant. I was whingeing about it on Twitter, saying I’d gone from thinking I was over it forever to swinging around to the conclusion that this is how it is now, suck it up and try and get on with it. Someone posted a link to brilliant NHS article I’d never heard of, Post Viral Fatigue. It was such a relief to see it was a thing, not just something I’d made up. They reckon it has a direct link to exertion, which is unfortunate for me.
I know you should never google to self diagnose or you end up convinced you’re pregnant and have Black Death, but that really nails it. They say to even ration thinking as it wears you out. That struck a chord. In the afternoons when it was hitting me hardest at work, my brain was so slow, and it was such an effort to think, I just couldn’t bring myself to make chit chat or banter. Not that I generally want to, but being too exhausted to do it is a different matter than just being anti-social. Again, I’ll try and nurse the injury until after this year’s running is over then rest up.
Wendy has taken the extremely brave step of trying to go back to work. Her first half day shift is on Thursday. It’s going to be tough for her, but she’s womanning-up in an epic way. And we’ve been over it to death, to try and prepare her responses. If they give her a hard time she is prepared to go back on the sick. She’s not putting up with the abuse. Personally I don’t think she should go back to this job at all, but if she does, and can manage the pressure, I think it would be the quickest route to her regaining full sanity. Such a (potentially) hard, hard way to do it though. I’m not sure I could have faced down the ‘trigger’ event when I was still suffering from it. So brave.
Well, I’ve talked it out and talked it through. I’m feeling less sad about the biking thing now.
Right, some Twitter and a few garden pics and I’m going to bed.