It’s Motorcycle Season


Living in the northern part of the country we look forward to the time we can get our motorcycles out and ride, ride, ride.  Yes we do ride during the winter.  I usually get mine out and ride if the temperature reaches 30-35 degrees and the weather is agreeable.  No Snow, Ice, Sleet, etc.  It may be a short ride of only 3-5 miles,  but at least it is a ride.

Some people ride anytime.  One of the guys I used to ride with many years ago, rode in snow, rain sleet, it didn’t matter.  The reason was this.  He worked part time for his father, (my boss).  When he had his 16th birthday, his Dad wanted to take him out to buy him a car or truck.  He knew how much I enjoyed my motorcycle, and opted for a motorcycle.  I tried to talk him out of this choice, knowing how cold and snowy it gets around here.  He wouldn’t listen.  His Dad bought him a brand new Honda 165 Dream.  He rode it in snow 4 inches deep.  Just to get to school.  It was about a 3 mile walk to his school.  They didn’t send a bus around then.

I guess you could say I started riding fairly young.  Being a late baby.  Most of my cousins were 10-15 years older than me.  In fact I have 2nd cousins my age.  My first experience I remember was behind cousin on his Harley-Davidson 74.  I was about 5.  I was never sure if my brother, who is 10 1/2 years older, actually had a motorcycle or if he just rode friends bikes.  I know it had to be a secret when he took me for rides  on an Indian Motorcycle.  Perhaps that is why I have a soft spot for Indians.  I almost bought one once.  It was a heck of a deal.  I had been out of work for about 6 months.  I just started a construction job.  Not really knowing anything about construction,  I was only making $1.65 an hour.  I had a wife and two boys.  Next door to the construction site was an old Indian Cycle shop.  The old guy who owned the shop I remembered from trips there with my brother.  He vaguely remembered my brother and he and I would talk sometimes after work.

One day he took me to back his shop.  He still sold parts and occasionally repaired an Indian.  Any way in the back of the shop he still had a couple of Indians in crates.  I don’t remember the model that caught my eye, I only remember it was GREEN.  He told me I could have it for $300.oo.  But he was closing shop and moving to Florida, so I had only 2 weeks to come up with the money.  I never was one to buy anything I couldn’t pay cash for.  Now looking back I wish I had asked my brother to loan me the money.  But I didn’t.

One of my second cousins father drove a Borden’s milk truck.  One Sunday they were having motorcycle races at a local track.  He was a Harley rider  and some of the stories he and his wife (my 1st cousin) could tell about riding in the 1940’s and 50’s. I only heard some of them a few years ago).  Like the time he got to the next town before he realized she hadn’t gotten on, and had to go back to get her.  Any how he would sneak us in while making deliveries, then pick us up when he came back to pick up the empties. It was a real treat, to watch the men race around the kidney shaped dirt track.

I have owned only 4 brands of Motorcycles in my life.  But I am running longer than I planned so I will stop here and pick up with Motorcycle Season next post.

Remember April is “Get out and Ride”  month.

It isn’t what you ride.  It is that you ride’

That Is How I See It.

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