Dodging the RoadkillClarksville, Tn — I was hanging around a few bikers last week, complaining about the weather of course, when the discussion turned to, when was it time to stop riding, and if your significant other asked you to stop, would you?

The discussion touched on a variety of topics related to when it was time to maybe move to a Trike, or, stop riding altogether (and that’s no disrespect to Trike owners).  If the physical skills had slipped, or you reached an age where it was “time,” what would you do?

Some of the comments were;   “I’ll ride ’till I die” or “I’ll know when it’s time, but ain’t nobody gonna tell me to stop riding!”

Then someone asked, “what if  your wife asked you to stop riding, would you?”

WHOA!  Awkward pregnant pause.

“HELL NO!”  “My ol’ lady would NEVER ask me that”” or, “My wife loves the bike as much as I do, that ain’t never gonna happen.”

Terry And Lori Beth Arrington

Terry And Lori Beth Arrington

Obviously a touchy little subject, and when I posed the question on my Facebook page, the responses were the same.  But in all honesty, a lot of my friends who ride say that their relationships couldn’t be better BECAUSE of the motorcycle.

Without a doubt, Bikers have attitude.  Bikers are fearless and bikers can be stubborn.  By God, if I want to ride, I’m going to ride and I’ll ride whenever and wherever I want as long as I want.   

I agree.

When I made the decision a couple of years ago to buy a Harley, my wife looked at me and slammed her hands on her lap and yelled, ‘NO, NO, NO!”  My son, who is a firefighter, just said, ” Well Dad, if you saw some of the things I saw, you would never get on a motorcycle, but I support you.”

I was 63 years old when I bought my first motorcycle.  I took the safety course, did my research and settled on the bike I knew I wanted and that I could handle.  I was committed and I’ve never looked back, and if you follow my story, you know it’s changed my life.

But when is it time to quit?

I don’t know many bikers who are in a relationship that the both of them aren’t equally as passionate about motorcycles.  They either both

Michael Noirot And Tracy Bettencourt

Hank with Michael Noirot And Tracy Bettencourt

ride, or they ride “2-up.” 

It’s a beautiful thing. 

My wife rides with me occasionally, and it took her a couple of months to approach me about it, but she doesn’t travel with me and she won’t ever own her own bike.  She and my son both know that this experience has changed my life and pulled me up by my “britches.”

It was a VERY dark period for me.

Honestly, I can’t imagine anyone who is married to, or in a relationship with a biker, would ever ask that question.  I think if your health dictates that you can no longer ride, then that’s one thing.  Hopefully, bikers know when it’s time.

This is an unbridled passion like no other.  It’s an incredible community of brothers and sisters.  There’s no other feeling like it in the world, and if you’re passionate about something, why would someone who loves you EVER ask you to stop?

While I don’t think I would endanger myself or others by pushing limits I can’t handle, I believe I’ll ride until I die. 

Cover photo credit: Photo by Ben Rosett on Unsplash