A biker I be
One could be forgiven for dubbing ‘refueling’ as the most uninvolving element to motorcycling (I won’t say boring, physics proves this impossible when bikes are involved).
Sure, you have to stand and watch the counter with a steady hand, and remember to bring the money to pay with. But in comparison to say, normal riding, it isn’t as demanding.
Those who ride will know what I’m talking about. The Zen like state of oneness one acquires when riding is, astounding. Anyway! the point of this somewhat convoluted tale is that refueling gives the old head a moment to reflect. And reflect I have.
My local forecourt is normally packed. But yesterday it was strangely deserted (maybe because of the prices – ahem!) It was just me and my bike. As I started walking towards her, a strange, almost explosive epitome struck me flat inside my head. Looking at the glinting reflective silver, and the sexy strong shapes of my bike, made me suddenly realise just how fortunate I am.
As an agnostic, it’s probably the closest thing I can get to a revelation. The thought was this. I’m so grotesquely lucky to be here. Standing, as a biker, with a beautiful, awe inspiringly powerful motorcycle at my command. Not to look too deeply into things (I’ve been accused of this before) but really, how lucky are we to be bikers?
The reactions of many people, be they positive; smiles, waves, etc, or negative, as in cross-looks, grumbles, or out right swearing – are revealing. Many people would love to be a biker. But most lack the heart, conviction, strength and skill required to travel upon a holy mount of righteous bikerdom.
Now, not that I’m a fanatic or anything, but let’s think about this for a moment. Namely, being in the right place (human) having the money (first world) and the ability (talent) to ride a motorcycle is to me, mind numbingly improbable. For the vast majority of people, becoming a biker even if all three criterion are met, is never an option. They think ‘can’t’ before even trying.
This is not so with the biker. For we are a rare and most precious breed. It was in that moment, standing with key in hand, all alone on that courtyard that I finally accepted who, and more importantly what, I am.
Never again shall I feel slightly stupid for clanking around in armour at college or out on the town. Never again shall I feel left out when all around are losing their heads, and their wallets. Never again shall I feel slightly ashamed at smelling of bike and BO, all the time. For I have something much more rewarding, life affirming and beneficial in my life than an uninitiated can ever imagine – motorcycles. With this knowledge comes to me a simple fact. A biker I be. And I always will be.