I looked out the window before I left home for the office this morning to see a light dusting of that white stuff they call snow. My first reaction was “Snow day!” but that would hardly go over very well – after all, it was the day after the Super Bowl and I surely would get pegged as “That guy with the big hangover”. The thermometer read a crispy 1° C, so on goes the cold weather gear and said a quick prayer that Old Blue would start this morning. Open the garage door, unplug the trickle charger and plug the ‘lectrics in and with a push of the button, Old Blue comes to life with a loud roar. Oh, the music to my ears.
But now forward the clock three hours later and I am here in the office day dreaming about my little journey of September 2006. Trouble was brewing in the home front, the woman I was living with turned more and sourer, so I did what any good man would do – I bought a bike. Not just any bike, but a project bike. I figured that if I had something to keep me busy and out of her way, everything would turn better. You see, there was a common trend in my life with women - it seems it was always "the bike or me" and you know who always won that battle.
So now that I have decided this is no longer going to be the case, I sat before this project as she rested on her new, albeit temporary, perch in the garage. Soon I was reminded that it was a “Purple bike” by that mindless woman. That did not matter to me, it was just noise in one ear and out the other as my mind started to crank out blueprints and drawings on what this project was going to transform herself into. But not long into my visions, my partner screams out “Aren’t you going to work today?” I guess she saw the confusion on my face because she very gruffly told me it was seven o’clock – IN THE MORNING!! Yes, I sat there all night dreaming what ‘Bear’ was to become.
Months pass and my garage soon begins to look more like a fabrication shop than a residential addition to one’s home. Bike parts scattered all over and an engine’s blood dripping to the floor as its heart lay exposed. The skeleton is bare, welding smoke and paint vapours fill the air as the new parts slowly start to arrive.
Weeks pass and the beast now had a new heart, new bones, new shoes and a new fur! A total rebuild, repaint and, well – a new life. Not only did I start a project which would breathe new life into a dying motorcycle, but I brought life to a new family – CMC065 was created. The stress in my life was gone as the woman that was holding me back was no longer part of my world.
Don’t get me wrong here folks, if it were not for her, the Bear would not have been created nor would the Chapter have been formed and many other relationships kindled, including the marriage to my Gazelle. I owe that woman a lot! So you see, great thing come from the bad – like the Phoenix which rises from the ashes.
My new found family stretched across the nation and soon I found myself on a road trip to the first National CMC Rally which was held in Midland, Ontario. The bear belching life into this old biker as we tore up the highways from the west coast to the Great Lakes and along the way, both to and from, more relationships were made and more lessons learned.
The biggest lesson learned was a simple one that we rarely really think about. No matter how bad one has it, someone else has it worse. Get on your machine, let your hair flow free and your attitude will change. Nothing seems to matter anymore. I hate to use the old jingle from Honda, but you meet the nicest people on a Honda motorcycle.
Thank god Gazelle rides, now I will no longer have to make that nasty decision