Thursday, March 24, 2011

Motorcycle Riders Course - 3/19-3/20/2011

Nick and I signed up to learn to ride a motorcycle and get our licenses. He wants to learn mainly because of the distance to his girlfriend's house and when he moves to Fresno. I just have always wanted to know how to ride a motorcycle. Just one of those items on my list of things to do... 
Anyway we signed up for a course that satisfies the requirements for the state test. It has a classroom session for 5 hours on a Thursday night, and 2 - 5 hours riding sessions on a weekend. We signed up for last weekend to ride during the 7am-12pm sessions... yep 7 AM. We had a play to go to that Saturday night and couldn't do the afternoon session. The morning is fine with me, but the weather was horrible! Rain, cold and wind.. so bad that my hands were frozen by the end of the class. We rode through it all...Nick even crashed near the end of the class.. probably because we were getting hypothermic! When we woke up Sunday morning at 5am we heard the rain and it was coming down hard. I had decided we were going to reschedule because I didn't want to go through those miserable conditions again. All the way driving there it rained buckets and the wind was blowing so hard! But we got there and it started letting up... and the whole class it rained just a bit on and off. It was the first time riding for both of us and I have to say that I am pretty bad at the whole shifting thing still. My feet are just too big to work between the foot peg and the gear shift. But you are not going to believe this, we both passed the driving test. We can now get our licenses! Here are some of the pictures from where we were riding. It is in Alameda at the navy base where the USS Hornet is docked. You can see the big boats in the background as well as the angry skies... notice the time stamps. The morning after all of this, we were stiff, sore and just beat up.

Me at the start of day 1




Our rides parked with the ships in the background. See the water on the parking lot?

Nick on the first day at the break

Part of our group listening to the instructor and trying to stay warm


 I have to say it was a good learning experience. Nick learned that he still wants to ride and will be wearing all the protective gear he can. His knee and shoulder were banged up pretty bad and swollen just from that slow speed crash.(We had gotten him a coat with the kevlar pads in it and it protected his shoulder. His knee was a wreck and swollen to about 3 times normal size.)  Me? I am going to get my license but I will be a fair weather rider only... seriously.. no idea why anyone would want to get that cold and wet on purpose.

Julie