Dodging the RoadkillClarksville, Tn — As all of you know, the more you ride, the more you learn.  I’ve only been riding for a little over three years.  I’ve had three motorcycles, and I’ve learned a lot.  The truth about all of that is I’ve got so much more to learn.

Everybody told me, “don’t worry, you’ll drop the bike.”  I did.  Four times now.

Everybody told me, “it’s not a matter of if, but when.”  That’s true.  I’ve laid it down twice now.  The last time required surgery.

Everybody told me, “you need to learn more about the mechanics of your bike.”  I haven’t gotten to that one yet.

My morning started like any other hot summer day.  I met my riding partner early in the morning while it wasn’t so hot, and off we went.  We took off on one of my favorite rides, which took us through the back roads of southern Kentucky.  

We landed at Paris Landing State Park, then turned around and headed back in another direction.  More back roads and the sweet morning smells that only the Kentucky countryside can provide.

Some of our route required a four lane highway where speeds reached 70mph.  We then turned off onto another winding country road to head home.  At the end of the road, we crossed a railroad track and turned for home.

That’s when I heard it.  That’s when I felt it. 

Something “popped” in the front end.  I blew it off as just hitting a rock and continued to go through the gears.  Then I heard it again, only this time, the front end started to shake.

Whoa!  Something wasn’t right.

Riding about 35 mph, we stopped at the next town, just a couple of miles down the road, and took a look at the bike.  My first thought was I picked up something in the front tire, or maybe I did throw a rock into something that was causing my bike to shake.

But that was just more for show, as we neither one knew anything about the mechanics of a motorcycle and wouldn’t have known what was wrong if it bit us in the face.

We decided to turn for home, only able to do 45 mph and hopeful that the front end of the bike wouldn’t collapse (my thoughts, not reality).  Each time I tried to give it some speed, it would just wobble uncontrollably.

Now, to be clear, this was NOT a death wobble that we all know about.  The use of the term “wobble” was just a way to describe what I was dealing with.  Most people don’t come out of a “death wobble” unscathed.

Once home, I knew I had to get the bike to the dealership, and I was pretty confident that it HAD to be the wheel bearings, as they’ve got over 80,000 miles on them.  The last time I did an oil change, my mechanic said I should get them checked.  I didn’t do it right away, and this is what happened.

When the guys looked at the bike, they could tell right away, that it was the bearings.  They fixed it in no time and all was good.

Lesson learned, and no worse for wear.

This journey is a non-stop learning experience.  It’s a non-stop adventure and I love it.  The best part was the reactions I got from so many people through my social media who were so encouraging and supportive.  People who cared about me.  People who were genuinely concerned about me.

That’s what bikers are all about and I absolutely love it!  I want to also thank my riding brother, Craig, for helping me limp my big ass home.

Thanks for following my journey.