I have a nasty habit of rushing into things. Now I’m smart about it, I do my research... Wikipedia, Youtubes, all types of web testimonies... and then I just do. I’m a doer.
So when I got my dirt bike, I was thrilled at the opportunity to finally learn something that I never thought I would be given the chance.
But a not so chance encounter with a fence post found me literally covered in bruises all down my left side. The hubby was not amused.
He didn’t take my bike away, cause he’s not my father and frankly I got a bit of a temper and a good throwing arm... but he did schedule me for a class on basic dirt biking.
Well misery loves company right... since I was going to be forced to go well then so should the teenage daughter. She’s at an age when everything is a drag and frankly I didn’t want to be alone in my journey.
Besides to my way of thinking, wouldn’t it be nice to have a teen that is certified in bike riding... just in case right?
Being the thinker, planner and better half of this marriage, my husband did all the hard work.
He scheduled it, he paid for it, he bought all the required equipment (gloves, boots and googles to go with our helmets)... we were properly put together.
I failed to read the information he gave me on the upcoming said training so I didn’t pack a lunch and I didn’t print out the booklets ahead of time. I am clearly a fly by the seat of my pants kinda girl.
We got there on a bright Sunday morning about nine. We had listened to our church sermon online on the way, and while I was happy in the learnings of the Lord, I was not thrilled to be spending SIX HOURS at a school to teach me to stop my dirt bike.
Six. Hours. I really couldn’t wrap my head around why in the world, he couldn’t just show me how to properly brake and move on. I was bitter and humoring him... and the teen was just bitter.
I swear we had the wrong place but just when we circled back by it the second time... a gentleman come waddling across the driveway to a shed in dirt bike clothing.
Real, vividly branded dirt bike clothing. He might have been Jack Sprat, once his wife joined him... I was convinced. Highly skeptical of what we would learn, but understanding the danger of preconceived notions... we trudged along.
We went down into the field way below their home where a dirt circle was forever etched into the pasture.
There were four 250 dirt bikes lined up on the path. Turns out, we weren’t the only ones there to learn. A husband and wife team were joining us. A man that was familiar with street bikes and his wife that had never sat upon any bike.
We started slow. Learning how to start each of our bikes. Lucky me, there was only one kick start bike in the entire group and it fit me. So there I was with another kick start while everyone else, including my kid, had an electric start.
Start and stop. Start and stop. Then we progressed to riding in a very slow circle while staying in first gear. We rode to the midpoint and then we braked to a stop (by the way, this was my first introduction to a foot brake) then we rode on... and then we braked.
This went on for quite some time but it was a beautiful experience as I had no clue that there was any brake other than a hand brake. (Later inspection of my bike would note that the foot brake was bent up towards the body of the bike. Fascinating.)
We went from first to second. Then to cornering. We learned to stop fast. Look to where we want to go rather than where we were going. Riding the side of a hill. Figure eights. The list went on and on. I hate it when the better half is right. I needed that school.
Kalynn Brazeal is a conservative, Christian wife/mom/country girl carrying around an MBA, several decades of business experience and a strong opinion. Dividing her time between Grand Lake and Colorado, she continues to share her column on life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and cake. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.