On Saturday, I pulled on a new pair of ballistic denim jeans along with a ballistic nylon jacket, tall tall Chippewa hi-shine boots, donned my new SuperSeer helmet, and joined a group from my motorcycle club for a ride.
My spouse has been reluctant or worried about me riding by myself ever since I had that crash on 31 May. He approved, though, of me…
…joining a group of safe riders from my club, so he knows that if anything were to happen, I would have others around me in case I had a problem. I appreciate his concern, but I was feeling a bit over-restricted because more than half of my club’s rides are too long, too far, and too fast for my comfort. So if I can’t ride by myself and choose not to go on rides with my club that are too much for me, then I will not be riding at all. Not good. Not good whatsoever.
Also, as agreed with the spouse, I am no longer commuting every day to work because I will not ride in the dark — and it is always dark when I set out from home to drive to work. Always — goes to show how early I arrive at the office — no later than 0530; frequently even earlier than that.
And finally, since I absolutely insist on wearing full protective gear when I ride, I have found that when temperatures exceed 90F (32C), no matter how well-ventilated the jacket, I cannot tolerate the heat. If I cannot wear protective gear (because it will dehydrate me quickly), I choose not to ride.
Putting all that together, I have not been riding much at all. My poor Harley looked so sad in the garage, not having been ridden for the past three weeks when temperatures have been in the upper 90s (35C+). Therefore it is not surprising that my muscles that are stretched and engaged when I ride my big, heavy, Harley got out of shape.
Saturday started out with the usual T-CLOCS thorough inspection of my Harley. All checked out fine.
I rode off to meet my buddies, and we had a very pleasant early morning ride. We ended up in Baltimore — my home state’s largest city. I got to watch a great nephew play soccer when our ride destination was very close to where he was playing. That was terrific!
Then my nephew and wife (GN’s Dad & Mom) suggested that we go to a very famous diner/cafe for brunch.
You never have to ask Harley riders twice about eating. (giggle).
We enjoyed our meal and I particularly enjoyed catching up with my nephew and his family. My biker buddies were going to press on for the next part of the ride.
I decided not to join them. I was already feeling quite stiff and sore — much more than the usual aches and pains of an older-age rider.
I remained with my family and visited a while longer. I let my great nephew sit on my Harley — but no riding since he cannot reach the foot boards and he was not geared properly. But he enjoyed sitting on Uncle BHD’s HOG.
After the nice visit, I bid my family farewell, mounted my iron horse, and headed home. By myself.
The route involved some major highway routes, which are no fun regardless of the weather. But as a seasoned rider, I held my speed and rode steady. I rode to a less intense highway for a straight-shot back home.
I arrived back home without a problem. I put my gear away and entered the kitchen from the garage. I was greeted with a big smile and a hug from the spouse. He wanted to know about my ride.
I told him — everything. Including the part about riding home some 40 miles by myself. (Some of you are saying, “40 miles? Heck, I ride 40 miles to get groceries. No big deal.)
My spouse listened and said, “well, I guess you can ride alone. I would prefer that you go with a group, but if it doesn’t work out, it’s okay that you ride when you can.”
I was glad to hear that because I want to visit a niece and her family next weekend. Her sons are anxious to see Uncle BHD on his Harley. I do not want to disappoint them. 🙂
But man oh man, was I sore the remainder of the day and into the next day. NSAIDs were my friend (combo of acetaminophen + aspirin + caffeine is the only NSAID that works for me.)
I’m going to have to figure out how to ride more often to keep the muscles in shape. Either that or exercise. Naaahhh… no gym. I’ll ride more 🙂
Life is short: ride safely, appropriately geared, and always booted!