Well, I'm almost 40 years old, an unwavering enthusiasm, my grandmother's knees and… an A2 license in my pocket. All the conditions met so as not to lend themselves to the mocking criticism of those who try to forget their beginnings. Yes, I'm 40, an A2 license, so what?
There is no age to fall in love
What could be better, to take refuge from time to time, than a passion, a coffee maker and a friend who doesn't care how old my license is? I would answer without the slightest hesitation: the pleasure of tinkering with a motorcycle with stitched chrome. Or, trying to repair a meter on which Jesus himself had to tap his saving index finger. Because probably, even by apposition of his divine hands, this one will not return among us. We all have our crushes. My first love was the Yamaha 600 XT . The day when, finally, I was able to afford one, how can I tell you? It was… WOW! I felt like I had landed a date with the prettiest girl in high school.
I was reliving my 15th birthday and, with beating heart, I went to the party of the year. No more wasting time trying to figure out why I was so lucky! Both excited and worried, I arrived at the filthy gas station where we had arranged to meet for the sale.
I see her ! She stands only a few meters from me, proudly planted on her two wheels. The prom queen! I wouldn't say no to a drink, just to relieve my suddenly dry throat. Leaning slightly on her side stand, she invites me to join her. I approach and ... what do you want, even the sublime Japanese suffer the ravages of time. But never mind, this old teenage dream has become a reality.
Give your motorcycle its identity
I found her every day, identical to the others, true to her form, to her pace. From there, was born the desire to find MY motorcycle in my garage. I no longer had any attraction for this version, similar to all those made that same year. I expected something else, more personal. I wanted more than a 600 XT, I wanted my bike. There followed an intimate period in the back of my garage that decency will limit me to a few summary indications.
So, for more comfort, I installed it on the motorcycle lift. I then organized enough space around it to store my tools , my accessories and the spare parts necessary for its transformation. My garage had nothing to envy to a real operating room! In a corner, the coffee was flowing drop by drop. I put a Doors CD in my old player, hanging over the workbench, and opened my toolbox. At the first notes of Riders On The Storm , I started…
After the time necessary for the completion of my project, my Yamaha 600 XT became what I wanted: a personal motorcycle , the one I love and which looks a little more like me .
40 years old, an A2 license, so what?
From there, was born a feeling without judgement. I'm just watching it from afar, amused. This imperious need to keep everything "as it was" escapes me a little. Like the impossibility of moving on to the next stage, of being stuck in a de facto state. “ Oh! Reminds me of my youth, remember? It was a wonderful time! ".
Very often, this imperative need to keep the original painting, regardless of its beauty, is inevitable. This motorcycle is paid for, but it is not, however, theirs. No, it remains that of the catalogue, of this precise year, identically. Despite everything, it is invested with personal memories, strong moments for its owner and the day of a possible sale, a sometimes unreasonable sum is requested. By definition, memories have no cash value, but I respect those loving memories. Because if I only have an A2 license in my pocket, my passion for motorcycling is very real.
If the purchased object is the same as all the others, why couldn't we appropriate it? Model it, in a way, so that it is in the image of its buyer. Customizing these complex machines is also a mark of respect for the work of their designers .
Nothing like a motorcycle ride
It is for these reasons that I practice motorcycling, riding my motorcycle at random on the roads, contemplating landscapes sometimes accessible only on 2 wheels. The desire to be nowhere, to not always be able to locate myself on a map, the need to rediscover a certain idea of freedom. Anyway, it's often the same one that leads the way. We all have that twin-cylinder friend from Milwaukee that makes the sound of a dishwasher being emptied, unless it's my dishwasher making a Harley noise, I don't know.
I only remember the good times , the shrouds of light in the trees, the smell of the motorbikes in front of me, the sun on the terrace. The pleasure would have been the same on an S1000R or an Inazuma . In any case, I would have made sure that it matches as much as possible with my jacket.
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