August 3, 2009

Sunday Adventure

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Everyone remember that motorcycle I bought a few months back? The one that I jumped at the chance to buy and haven't mentioned since? The one that has been held captive and remained non-ridden?

Vaguely?

Well...I'm here to announce that she is officially in my hands. She is officially on my daily radar. She has officially been ridden.

To demonstrate the triumph of this moment, not just the excitement that it is finally done, I will tell you a little story about this little motorcycle's journey.

About a week ago "A" and I set out on an the adventure of moving my motorcycle from its temporary storage space (his parent's house)in the city to its cozy little space in the suburbs where it is safe to ride.

We arrived at his parent's house and uncovered my lovely new friend. I pulled her out (engine off) into the sun and set her up on the street. "A" started her up, with very little complaint from her...thank goodness, and we pumped up the tires for the ride. After she was warmed up, we made our way to the gas station and then to the freeway.

About an hour later, we had made it safely to the storage facility and went down to unlock the unit and make sure she really fit through the narrow door. When I signed up for the unit the door stuck a bit and I had to pull hard to get it open, but it was nothing much to worry about. I undid the locks and pulled as hard as I could...

No budge.

So I pulled again.

No budge.

"A" encouraged me to pull as hard as I can.

"I am!" I said and try it again.

No budge.

Shortly after we realized that not only was the door stuck, they had all been freshly painted and now it was painted shut!

Of course it was after 5pm and all of the underpaid, semi-bright storage employees had gone home. So I reached in my bag for the after hours number...the number I was told to call if I ever needed anything and the manager would be right over...the number that I called and received no answer...the number that I left an angry message on asking for a refund for the month knowing that I wouldn't hear back from anyone until Monday.

So there we were, standing in the heat on a Saturday evening trying to pry open a storage locker door with the handle to my car jack. After much of the new paint had been chipped off the door and the latches had been bent, we decided to surrender. That door would never budge. Luckily, "A" has a unit at the same facility and there was barely enough room to store my little friend inside. Phew!

So a week goes by and she was still held captive and still non-ridden. The storage facility calls to tell me that I can move to another unit, but I have to come in during business hours to sign a new lease, which translates into..."Come in on your day off since we are only open during the day to sign paperwork that could be as easily faxed." Joy.

This brings us to yesterday...lovely Sunday.

I wake up late (after a grueling week I needed some rest) and head to their office for a quick little signature and then be on my way to enjoy the sun. I arrive to find out that they cannot print the paperwork because I would end up getting charged some sort of enrollment fee again...it's complicated, but it comes down to a mistake by the district manager in the computer system. So, finally, after some firm discussion on my part, I end up selecting a different unit to put my things in until they can get this all sorted out. An hour later, I am happy with my new space and I call "A" to tell him that I will be moving the bike. He hops in his car and heads over.

So...some of you may not know that I have been a little hesitant to ride. It's been a few months since the class and I am nervous to go out on the road until I am comfortable with downshifting, signalling, quick stopping, etc. "A" has been a great coach so far, but he has also been doing almost everything for me up to this point. Before he arrives, I decide I am going to take the reins for this one.

I open up his storage unit, slowly back my baby out, find some level ground for the kick stand and fire her up. Of course she starts right up and I am well on my way to my first ride. I quickly change into my jeans and boots and wait while she warms up. I walk to the end of the row and look at my path of travel.

Uh Oh.

I forgot about the hill that goes from his unit to mine. Not a hill! I've only ever been on flat ground. The anxiety creeps up again. Not so brave afterall. Shortly after "A" arrives.

In the end, "A" rode it down the hill to my new unit and I drove down to meet up. While he ran back up the hill to move his car, I stood there staring at my shiny new friend. Once again inspiration hit, I hopped on, started her up, and I was off!

I did it!

I finally rode my motorcycle!

Finally!

After a few turns around the storage facility, a little practice downshifting, and some rallying at 18mph, I pulled her safely into the unit and locked her up. Now she is there whenever I need her...whenever the spark hits me...whenever I need an adventure.

So, I started Adventuresome August off with a bang. A little bang, but a bang none the less. I cast aside my my fears and took a little joyride. My adventure only took me around the parking lot a few times, but it was a fabulous "in the moment" adventure on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Sometimes that's all we need (especially in the face of adversity)...a moment to be powerful. To be spontaneous. To surprise ourselves. To act like a kid again. To take control of the moment and run with it.

Here's to adventure! (...and learning how to downshift properly)

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