Sunday, July 31, 2016
One of my passions, my motorcycle, has been on the back burner, and when I had been able to ride some they weren't the rides I love. The rides I love most are trips, not over night, not over a weekend, but fully packed bikes, little out of the way motels, rallies, pictures, and most of all, very limited technological access and total emotional connection with my fellow riders.
Today, well today was different. My husband and I took off for a day, a long, full, day of riding, thinking, and taking in the incredible scenery of Oregon.
The second I geared up and threw my leg over my Harley I felt alive. I was incredibly overwhelmed anticipating what the day would hold. There's just something about being a woman that rides her own Harley that is more than empowering.
I love to ride, and as we rode through the National Forests of Oregon, I remembered why riding is a passion of mine. I can see more when I'm on my bike, like the hawk just above me at one point, that I could have never seen in a car. I see the blades of grass gently dancing in the wind, horses graze, and old men fish. I see the world as it was before technology took over.
On a motorcycle you pretty much have to notice more than you do in a car. There could be deer, wet leaves, loose gravel, and those pesky people enveloped in a cage that seem to like looking at their phones more than looking at the road. So with all of that in mind, you see everything.
All of my senses are heightened when I ride. There's so much more I experience. The beautiful aromas of flowering fields, and freshly mown lawns, are only two of thousands that come to life. There's the "woodsy" smell of the forest, the intoxicating, to a biker, aroma of leather, gasoline, and sunscreen.
As we rode along the beautiful Clackamas River I could feel the cool breeze drifting from the rushing water and wafting in the heat of the sun. Then there were the "micro climates" we have in the Northwest that amaze me. Hot, warm, cool, and cold, could all be felt in a matter of minutes while riding through the winding roads lined with towering trees.
The biggest rush I think is the feel of being on, and controlling, a machine nearly 8 times my weight, experiencing its power, feeling the bike lean as you push into the curves, the vibrations of the motorcycle itself, and knowing that I have to be in control of my motorcycle, my emotions, and my thoughts, at all times. With that comes clarity of mind.
That must sound a bit crazy to a person that doesn't ride, but with so much to be aware of, I'm then allowed to forget, for the time, the problems of daily life. I'm able to think through things I choose without the constant tones of texts, and other social media bombardment. I can see life through new eyes. I'm free, not only from the world as it presently is, but from troubles that can be pushed to another day.
Today, as every time I ride, I remember why I fell in love with riding, and I fall in love all over again each time.