My First Ride – Part 1

I am a mother, a grandmother, a teacher, and a H.O.G. Road Captain.  I wasn’t always a motorcyclist though.  In fact, it was only a handful of years ago that I climbed on the back of a bike for the first time in my life – at age 36! 

It was October 2004 – my divorce had been finalized for nearly a year and I was doing the online dating thing.  I had gone out to dinner with Butch when he asked if I wanted to go for a ride on his Harley.  Thinking it could be fun and was certainly something new, I agreed…even though I had absolutely no idea what it would entail, what to wear, etc.  It was a brisk fall afternoon when he came to pick me up, and we headed up MD-30 towards Hanover PA.  Admittedly, I was a bit nervous, not to mention clueless!

I was tentative, but the ride was nice…until we hit the rush-hour traffic standstill going through Hampstead.  He had his feet mostly on the ground as we barely moved for a good 10-15 minutes, creeping slowly through town.  At one point Butch even said, “Gee it’s such a lovely day I thought I’d take my bike out for a walk!”  This experience wasn’t all bad from my standpoint though.  It gave me the opportunity to get acclimated to sitting on the back of the bike without worrying about flying off the back while we were moving.  By the time we got going again I was actually pretty comfortable.

We ate dinner at a really cute little mom-n-pop place in Hanover – coffee & hot chocolate to warm up, cheeseburgers, fries & sodas, and even some pie a-la-mode for dessert.  The entire bill including tip came to like $14!  We geared back up (me with my totally oversized leather Ravens football jacket and $8 Rite-Aid sunglasses), and headed back home.  The sun was setting at this point, so it was getting COLD!!!  I don’t even think I had gloves at all, and I remember a bank sign saying it was 57 degrees as we rode past.

On that ride back, Butch asked me if I would like to go fast…to which I responded with a resounding “yes!”  This riding thing was totally awesome!  And then he answered with what would be the end of any future our relationship might have had, “no, I won’t go fast with a passenger on board.”  So why’d ya even ask me then, moron?  Butch, I was not so impressed with; but as for the Harley, I was hooked!

* This article first appeared in print in the August issue of Fast Lane Biker Delamarva and is the first in an ongoing series of articles by Diana Green.