Sunday, I participated in the Tuckessee H.O.G Chapters Polar Bear ride and while we really didn’t have polar bear temperatures, we had a great turnout and the ride was fabulous.
My favorite part of any group ride is when we all gather beforehand to learn the route and get instructions on where we’re going and when we will arrive at our destination. It’s a time to visit with some brothers and sisters I don’t see as often and to “catch up” a little. I love that time before a ride. It’s part of this culture and it’s part of what makes it so special.
Our ride took us through some of the more favorite Tennessee backroads, including the infamous highway 232, or “baby dragon” as it’s called, and it’s one of my favorite places to ride. It brings us out to the Natchez Trace Parkway.
Now as much as I enjoy a good group ride, my favorite way to ride is with just a hand full of bikers who have similar styles and such. That was the plan from the outset. Four of us were going to skip lunch and continue riding. Since we were chasing daylight, we wanted to continue on down the road and ride.
During THAT ride, we found ourselves back out on some Tennessee backroads, enjoying the cool weather and beautiful countryside. Everything was going well, until our fearless leader, (me) decided he was just going to blow right through a four way stop.
LIKE IT WASN’T EVEN THERE! MY GAWWWWWD!
I have no excuse to offer for this brain fart, except I was caught up in the moment, music playing, wind in my face and I was just blowing on down the highway. I didn’t even see the stop sign, and even worse, it was where we needed to turn.
I was distracted! Pure and simple.
Luckily there was no other traffic and my riding partners sort of blew it off (although I think deep down inside they were calling me names, names with the word “ass” in it).
The lesson here is that we can’t get distracted from our primary job when riding our bikes. We MUST stay focused at all times so as not to find ourselves in a potentially life or death situation. This one COULD have been a disaster, but it wasn’t. My brothers were cool about it, since there was no harm/no foul.
So please be safe out there. Pay attention and don’t get too caught up in the sound of the engine, or the sound of the music you’re listening to. Our lives depend on us being on point while riding these beasts.
Ride on! Ride Safe! Enjoy the experience!