I wrote the following Facebook post on March 11, 2016 on my way through Jacksonville returning from a road trip to Maine in my recently purchased Miata and after my bike accident in December (2015) the previous year. I had not yet purchased my current bike and didn’t know at that time whether I would ever ride again.

I have been a biker/motorcycle rider in one way or another for about 50 years, starting out with a Bridgestone 90cc, working up thru a series of Hondas and Zuzukis to Harleys. As required for motorcycle riders on base, I went to biker training in the mid 1980s and always considered myself a careful defensive and watchful rider
I was careful not to be critical of either bikers or automobile motorists. Well maybe rice rocketeers LOL. There were times riding in groups when i would lag behind because of what I considered over zealous front runners and some in the group in too big of a hurry. And, reading and hearing of accidents I saw both motorists and bikers at fault.

I had an epiphany of sorts yesterday driving down I-95 from SC to south of Jacksonville, especially as traffic was crowded from north Jax down to about St Augustine. Biker groups speeding down the highway some seemingly in a hurry to reach Daytona making dangerous maneuvers in and out, changing lanes, some following dangerously close to semi trucks. In one instance I was in the center lane about 70 mph when a group passed, one biker came within a foot of my left side straddling the line. They moved up to within less than 10 yards behind a truck and obviously would have been a massive accident if the truck had braked. Don’t ever believe that motorcycle accidents are always the fault of others.

I miss riding and may never ride again, but if my doctor gives the ok, I will, but will definitely steer clear of the maniacs who give us a bad name after the bike accident in December the prior year.

Update, March 2020

As my friends know, Several months later (after the story above), I finally felt I was physically able to ride again and bought another Harley. Very nervous about riding after such a long time, I met the seller at my credit union as he was a member also. I transferred the money to his account, he signed the title and it was mine. I spent several minutes riding the bike around the parking lot before heading home on the back roads. I still didn’t feel as comfortable as I should for the next week but it was a joy to be riding again.

A couple of weeks later I received a phone call from the daughter of a retired Navy man who died asking me to perform his memorial service. He was a the husband of one of my cousins who had died a few years earlier. He had requested me to do his service not only because we were friends but because my father had performed his wedding ceremony when he married my cousin so many years ago.. The service was to be in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

To say the least this presented a problem. Should I fly, which at this stage of my life I don’t do as I detest the small aircraft cabins as well as the hassle of going through the in-processing at the airport. Thus I was prepared to drive the Miata and looking forward to the trip as I was due for a nice drive and I had not been to NM in years and was also looking forward to visiting the family members.
Then, I thought, maybe I should ride the bike. Yes it would be a long trip but it had been a while since a bike trip and I really wanted to do it. I decided to sleep on the idea and make a decision.

The next day I called and said I would ride the motorcycle and that they should have a back-up plan in case I didn’t make it. I spent the day getting ready for the ride. The next morning I left early in the morning and rode all the way to Memphis that day. It tood me 3.5 days to make the ride and I felt great. After spending a few days there, I rode to South Carolina to spend the weekend relaxing before heading back home to Florida. It was a wonderful trip and the beginning of the joy of riding again.

The following year I had a severe back infection and spent over a month in the hospital, almost checking out of this ole world. Once again I faced the prospect of not riding again, but with determination I got back on the bike. Now as I get older and my legs are no longer as strong I’m even more mindful of the danger of riding so I most likely will never take any more real long rides but as long as I can manage will ride as often as possible.


I see a short trip back up to the NC/TN area again soon. We’ll see. In the meantime daily short trips are a necessity.