Motorcycle diaries – 2007
Nineteen years ago, my mother called me up late at night. She was sobbing uncontrollably. “Son, you will sell that motorcycle of yours, or I will never speak to you again.”
My younger brother Darrel had recently been paralyzed while he was a passenger in a car. One of the drivers had been drinking. So what did I say to my crying mother? “Yes mom, I will sell it.” She repeated herself, and then quickly ended the conversation.
And so I sold my wonderful 1981 BMW RT-65 touring motorcycle. It had carried me across country a few times without fail. It was my third BMW cycle. The first two were classic R 50/2s. Those two had been incredibly reliable, steadfast machines also, carrying me in total well over 150,000 miles without any significant failure. And in all of this time I had never had a motorcycle accident, or even laid one down. I had been driven off the road a few times by careless drivers, but that was it. Knock on wood.
My mother passed away over a year ago. So I could now, in good conscience, ride a motorcycle again. I went shopping. At first, I was shocked by how big motorcycles had grown to. Super sized, like many of the bodies that rode them. Cycles weighing 900+ pounds with engines of up to 2 liters displacement. Motorcycles that actually needed a reverse to get out of tight places. Those were 2-wheeled cars that fell over at stop lights. Not for me. Read More…