Saturday, July 10, 2010


It’s late morning and I’m rubbing sleep from the eyes as I sip my second cup of coffee. I’m suffering jet lag and trying to adjust to east coast time. The newspaper arrives on schedule and I scan the local news to see if I missed anything this past week. As I peruse the paper my eyes suddenly catch the words “Second Wind.” The cup stops mid way between table and lips as I read with interest about the demo rides patrons enjoyed the day before on the line of Triumph motorcycles at the Second Wind BMW/Triumph motorcycle shop in the next town over. Once again, I’m full of self pity at missing another motorcycle event, especially one so close to home.

My mind wanders as my eyes continue to scan the article. I’m thinking about the opportunity I turned away from this year when I was invited to ride and blog about Victory bikes. I still feel the sting of that one especially since if I had really put my mind to it, I’m sure I could have worked out a solution with the boss for time. Once again I have limited my options with my own limited thinking. Are not opportunities in full abundance all around us? Is it not our own tunnel vision that keeps us from finding ways to take advantage of them? Then as the article concludes, the writer invites us to stop by again today as demo rides will continue from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

“GET UP ANDY! We’re going riding!”

Poor Andy is roused and ushered out the door with not even a drop of coffee to dispel the sleep from his own jet lagged brain. We arrive and are told showers kept the morning group from riding and no more names are being taken as the weather has tuned. I did see a few rain showers at the house, but nothing that would keep me off a bike, but when I look around, I can see that the ground here is very wet. Yet I can’t leave. Andy patiently takes to the shop for some food from the small table inside. I feel glad that he at least can get some nourishment since I’ve dragged him out on a wild goose chase. Still, I feel that if fate has me here, then fate will see to it that I get to ride that nice red ‘09 Thunderbird leaning on the kickstand in the second row of bikes.

A rider heads out to test the roads. Andy is gone for second helpings after asking if I want to head back home. I’m not ready to go. The rider will be back and the decision will be made about an afternoon ride. When the rider returns, the crew puts their heads together. You can tell by the hush that the crowd is collectively holding their breath. Then a hand comes up and calls the morning riders. There is only on 10:00 person still here. There are three 10:30 people still here. On goes the checklist. It seems most gave up the wait and went home. There will be bikes available for late comers like me! HEE HAA!

I pull my license out, fill out my form and off to the nice red Thunderbird I go. Fate is good to me this day. We take our loop through some nice little twists in Hollis and all we get are a few sprinkles. I can’t believe I’ve gone from “no ride opportunity” to riding the exact bike I wanted to test. I’ve been triumphant this day! It’s a treat when you actually get a chance to test a high end bike like this to see just what all the hype is about. While I did enjoy the Victory, the engine didn’t seem as smooth as my own beloved Blaze who purrs each time I start her up. Overall however, the Thunderbird did quite well, hugged the road, had power to spare and felt very comfortable. If you are looking for a decent touring bike this would be the one, especially since the larger gas tank lends itself to long distance riding.

With the need for a ride fix behind me, I head home on Blaze. The rain begins in earnest, and we are soon soaked to the bone. Yet, it’s not a cold rain. I chuckle as I remember those who like to say to me “I’ll ride in the rain and I’ll ride in the cold. But there is no riding in the cold AND rain.” I guess I’m one of them because the rain is not cold and I’m not bothered. I’m home again and tending to the luggage, laundry and pile of mail. My curiosity is satisfied. I’m happy to have a great bike like Blaze patiently waiting for me to take advantage of the next great riding opportunity.

The next opportunity to try a different bike will be July 30 and 31 when the BMW Demo truck visits Merrimack. Check the Second Wind website for details.

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