With over 114,000km on my bike I am surprised at how little of that time has been 2 up riding. Probably not the thing to be thinking about as I embark on a weekend road trip with my wife and another couple. We go over the rules, when to lean and when not to, where and when to hang on, talking or the lack there of and before I know it we are 2up and pulling out into traffic. The first couple of turns feel a bit odd, but I soon find my comfort zone and next thing I know we are doing two up at 100km/hr on the DVP, exiting the city.
Our weekend plan included a ride around Rice Lake and ending in Port Hope for the night where we would take in a local theatre performance and then some back roads home the next morning. Since we got off to a late start we decided to reverse the order. It just happens to be one of the hottest weekends of the year and we stop after only about 75km for a cold drink and a stretch. I’m not used to stopping so soon but it was probable a good idea. It gave me a chance to check on my wife (Liz) and make sure she was enjoying herself and had no issues. I also forgot that my friend is a new rider and has very few kilometers under the helmet, and taking a passenger is even more stressing for him I’m sure.
Liz is a champ, leaning when she is supposed to lean, not squirming a lot in her seat and generally seems to be enjoying herself. She got her motorcycle license a few months ago so she knows how this whole motorcycle riding thing works, I just need to get her a bike now.
I can tell my friend wants to lead the ride, he’s being passive aggressive about it, wants to show me a beach so he can lead the way. I’ve seen this beach many times before but tell him I haven’t, so he can take the lead without any discussion. I really don’t care who leads the ride, I can adjust my riding style. It’s actually kind of nice not leading anymore as I really start to enjoy the time with my wife. We’re not talking, just occasionally pointing at different things of interest and enjoying being close. It not like a car where the center console divides us, the radio adds mindless noise or the need to not have dead air space results in chatter and not conversation. On a motorcycle we sit close, always touching, I can feel her every move and know that she is getting a bit uncomfortable from the heat. The ride ends soon enough at the Waddell Hotel in Port Hope. The four of us have a great meal, a few drinks then off to enjoy the local live theater. Looking around I notice we are the youngest in the place, definitely a retirement community. Overall a great day.
We start out again early the next day with the plan to circle Rice Lake. I let him lead again and watch him ride. He reminds me of a Lego figurine, bending only at the elbows and knees in a sitting position, so rigid and stiff. They are both wearing open face helmets and no gloves, I get the “wind in your face” feeling but the last time we went riding he had a full faced helmet. If I was Wolverine from X-Men I would wear any gear, but unfortunately I have no super powers. I asked him about the change when we stopped and he said it was because he felt confined, I think it’s so he can hear his wife talk to him. Someone once told me that when I person gets a skin graft that doctors use the flesh from circumcisions. I have never verified this but the idea of being covered in foreskin makes me happy I have a full-face helmet. If Lego man crashes he and his wife are going to needs skin grafts. I should send him a link to helmet audio systems. They make me nervous. He would be a much better rider if he would relax and just ride, he needs more seat time to build his confidence and lives in the perfect area to easily get in some decent rides.
Liz is a lot more relaxed today, still hot but relaxed. We enjoy the ride around beautiful Rice Lake, stopping for ice cream and to check out the lift locks. It’s a beautiful area and an enjoyable ride. I’ve stopped worrying about Lego man and just focused on my own ride. I adjust my mirror so I can see Liz’s face (her eyes anyway, the rest is covered by the full-faced helmet) She catches me checking on her and smiles. It’s nice just sitting together, enjoying the same thing at the same time and not having to discuss it, the scenery and experience speak for themselves. There is lots to talk about, lots to say but it’s just not necessary. We did a total of 381 kilometers that weekend, the longest ride I’ve had a pillion for and Liz’s longest ride on a motorcycle, next time I think she will have her own bike.
I’m planning an Iron Butt ride for late September and will be posting about that soon as well. Please check back.