The past few weekends on my motorcycle have been pretty fun – not because the terrain or destination was particularly epic (West Vancouver hiking, Abbotsford antique hunting), but rather it was the company I was with!
Last Sunday, in particular was a real joy because Scott and I went to Ladner to help a new friend. Stephanie is in Scott’s Masters program, and has this youthful energy and drive that reminded me of myself and Rhianon when we took up motorcycles a decade ago.
Stephanie leads outdoor education adventures for kids ages 11 to 18, and has a contract up in 100 Mile House, BC. She recently completed her parking-lot test and even though her hours of riding are pretty limited, she’s taking her new bike (a Suzuki DRZ 400) on a solo trip north this coming week. It was so great to inspect the bike with her, do some trouble-shooting, pull off the side covers, clean it up, lock down some bolts, review the contents of a roadtrip toolkit, and then go for a farm-land cruise for ice cream.
Even Scott was pretty pleased, realizing that in his early years of riding that he has accumulated some knowledge to be shared, including sites and forums to glean helpful information. In some ways, I think it takes a friend or two who have some experience to give you permission to delve deep into your bike. I remember how at first glance, as a beginner, I didn’t know where to start, not wanting to wreck something irreversibly! But once you start opening things up, and realizing how things connect, it reveals a whole new world of possibility and confidence.
We also liked Stephanie’s outlook on the basic concept of pursuing motorcycles. She knows no one, besides ourselves remotely connected to the “scene,” and seemed blissfully unaware of how the trend and the style has blown up to fashionable proportions. It was really refreshing to meet someone her age who is simply stoked on motorcycles for the sake of adventure!
Wishing her blessings and safety on the road ahead, and when faced with adversity remember that this is all part of the adventure and the learning experience!