Why do YOU Ride?

There’s a documentary film that has been released recently, entitled “Why We Ride“. I haven’t had the opportunity to see the entire thing, but the trailer alone is enough to bring tears to the eyes of the more sentimental amongst us. As the title suggests, the film attempts to answer the question of why we are so passionate about our chosen form of transportation.

I’ve put quite a bit of thought into this question, and I haven’t really come up with an answer.

I don’t ride to project an image.

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Yeah, I look bad-ass on my streetfighter. But there’s more to it than that. Photo credit: Mandy B.

I’m not a risk taker, I get no adrenaline rush from pushing the limits of my bike or myself.

I’m not a performance junkie. Even though I’ll never afford a car that could out-perform my Yamaha YZF-600R, that’s not the reason I ride.

Our climate dictates that even the toughest amongst us still must be confined to a vehicle for at least three months of the year. So having a motorcycle is not an economic decision.

For me, part of the appeal lies in the fact that riding a motorcycle (or should I say riding well) is challenging. Being relatively inexperienced, I’m constantly trying to improve my skills, and I get a real charge out of knowing that I’m slowly getting better.

The other part of the appeal is more difficult to put into words. It’s hard to explain the feeling to someone who doesn’t ride without slipping into tired cliches: “four wheels move the body, two wheels move the soul”, “driving a car is like watching a movie, riding a motorcycle is like being in the movie”, etc. But these cliches exist for a reason.

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You can’t beat the freedom offered by a dual-purpose motorcycle!

When I ride I feel immersed in life, fully in the moment. I feel every change in wind direction and temperature, and I smell everything (even the bad smells…what was up with the Goulds and Kilbride this past summer? Worse than ever!).

I’ve had some of the most spiritual experiences while on my bike. One memory that stands out in particular is riding towards St. Shott’s at dusk on the clearest of fall evenings, the sky to the west turning every shade of pink and purple, the North Star shining brilliantly above us. I felt that the entire universe was telling me “this is where you are meant to be at this moment”.

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St. Shott’s road on a beautiful evening

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Riding through the mountains of Gros Morne was an incredible experience!

My motorcycle has taken me to many places that I would never have seen otherwise, because I had no “reason” to go there. Just to get out and ride is “reason” enough! The journey in itself is the experience.

fogo

If I didn’t ride a motorcycle, Fogo would be a no-go

I know that not everyone gets so smitten with motorcycles…that’s why the classified sites are full of low-mileage bikes with ads that state “bought the bike and lost interest” or “bought this bike for my wife and she rode it twice”. However, those of us who love it, love it for life. It becomes part of our identity, if forced to give up riding we will feel less than whole.

Why do YOU ride? Is it a simple reason or something much deeper?

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Posted on November 10, 2013, in Behind the Visor and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I am not a Harley owner, but I believe their slogan- Ride to Live… I feel alive when I ride! There is not enough room for me and the cares of the world on the bike…

  2. I love the peace that I experience on a motorcycle. Going one step further, I feel a little bit closer to God and nature while on one – I love it!!!

  3. I may over simplify my response but I ride b/c when I do, I forget all my troubles. I am just more happy when I am riding…

  4. Last century when I had a short day Fridays, I always took the scenic route jome. My 50 minute commute often turned into a 2 or 3 hour detour.

    Best therapy for tough week; always has been, always will be.

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