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*happy dance* - when you don't know what to do...
do the next thing
*happy dance*
I passed my eval! I passed I passed I passed! I'm so stoked. Now I just want to get out there and ride -- I actually want to practice the tight, slow turns we were working on, because I figured out what I was doing wrong. Like with horseback riding, you don't necessarily want to sit
the saddle; sometimes (often) you want to sit
the saddle. I needed to sit deeper and relax my back, and the swervy weaving bits got a LOT easier. It was kind of like weaving heads, but without worrying about changing leads and not whacking the horse in the head with the sword.

The testing was actually fairly easy -- I had to do a tight figure eight in a box painted on the hardball, then do a swerve (no penalty points). Then we had to do a quick stop (3 penalty points; I didn't stop fast enough), and finally negotiate a curve (5 penalty points; I went too slowly -- halfway through I remembered "Oh yeah, I'm supposed to do this fast!"). So I got an 8 out of a possible 20 penalty points, which was one of the lower scores in the class.

I was really nervous about the figure eight; I hadn't done one yet where I didn't go outside the box. But I just did exactly what the instructors said: threw my weight to the outside of the turn, leaned on the outside foot peg, turned my head to look where I was going, and it all worked perfectly! It's a cross between turning my head and sitting like I was riding a horse and remembering what I've seen people do on the road and in commercials.

So as soon as my new license comes (within 21 days), I'll be a licensed motorcycle rider. I learned a lot; I definitely recommend this course. Now I just need a bike, and I can go riding with my honey.

i feel: happy happy

20 trips or shoot the rapids
hugh_mannity From: hugh_mannity Date: August 20th, 2007 06:34 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Congratulations!! I'm jealous. However, I can't see myself affording a bike anytime in the near future, so I've somewhat reluctantly decided I've retired from motorcycling.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 21st, 2007 02:30 am (UTC) (base camp)
They can be cheap, if you don't mind a small engine. [/enable]
hugh_mannity From: hugh_mannity Date: August 21st, 2007 03:06 am (UTC) (base camp)
What's "small"? I wouldn't feel safe on anything less than 500cc and even that's pushing it. In the UK, that's considered "large", but here it's probably not.

It's not really the cost of the bike as much as it is the anno domine of the rider. I'm 57 and haven't been on a bike in 19 years. I know I've lost my edge and I'm not sure I can get it back. The reflexes aren't what they were. I've lost a lot of my defensive driving/riding skills. And that's without considering the Bionic Knees of Stainless Steely Doom.

Of course, if after a year or so fencing, I find myself sharpening up a little then I can always reconsider :)
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 21st, 2007 03:33 am (UTC) (base camp)
I think of 250 cc as small, and Wolfie's bike is a 20-year old Kawasaki 305... but 500 cc bikes aren't that hard to come by. The Kawasaki Vulcan 500 Ltd is $5000 new; the Yamaha V Star Custom (650cc) is ~$6000 new. Those two are my front runners, if I can find a used one when I'm ready to buy.
mysticsablewolf From: mysticsablewolf Date: August 20th, 2007 07:53 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Hugs and congrats dear! Score doesn't really matter, just so long as you passed! Yay! Must send a pic of you on a bike sometime!
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 21st, 2007 02:29 am (UTC) (base camp)
It does and it doesn't -- There was this really annoying guy in class who kept wanting to get out early. He pushed us all to get from the riding range in Ayer to the classroom in Acton (12 miles over back roads) in 20 minutes on Saturday... and then got his stupid ass stopped by the cops and was 35 minutes late. When Deb (the instructor) asked if we wanted our scores, he was all antsy and said "nah, we don't need them, just give us our cards." So naturally, since he'd been pissing us all off with his antics all weekend, I said I wanted mine, so she read out everyone's. (I wanted to know how I did anyway, but if the guy hadn't been such an ass, I might have let it go.)
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 21st, 2007 03:10 am (UTC) (base camp)
Picture might have to wait till next year, since it's sort of silly to register and insure the bike with the end of the riding season so close. But I'll post one when I ride again and have someone around to take one. :-)
sar_kaz_m From: sar_kaz_m Date: August 20th, 2007 09:40 pm (UTC) (base camp)
heh heh. Tasha = BikerBabe. Sweet!
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 21st, 2007 02:21 am (UTC) (base camp)
Heh. I do feel distinctly more bad ass than I did before the class. I also found out that Vanson Leathers is in Fall River, and they have open houses and an irregular rack, and you can get a $300 leather armor-ready jacket for cheapedy-cheap. Plus, they make glow in the dark leather jackets. DO WANT.
From: nutter4 Date: August 20th, 2007 10:46 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Congratulations! :D
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 21st, 2007 02:44 am (UTC) (base camp)
Thank you!
cymrullewes From: cymrullewes Date: October 4th, 2007 05:10 pm (UTC) (base camp)
I did the MSF BRC this past weekend in Merrimack. My nose is still sunburnt and my voice is gone from the exhausts.

I did about the same as you on the test except that my quick stop was 2 feet too slow. I don't remember rolling off the throttle in the turn so the best I can figure is that when I dropped down my arm went up and took the throttle with it.

A group is planning on a small parking lot practice in Nashua this Saturday if you want in on it.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: October 4th, 2007 05:41 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Ooh, that could be fun! I can do my errands in Nashua as easily as Salem. When and where?
cymrullewes From: cymrullewes Date: October 4th, 2007 06:40 pm (UTC) (base camp)
0900 Saturday at Brookstone Shopping Center in Merrimack, right off exit 7 on Rt 3.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: October 4th, 2007 07:08 pm (UTC) (base camp)
I'll see what I can do, thanks! It'd be great to meet some folks.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: October 7th, 2007 03:38 am (UTC) (base camp)
Sorry we didn't make it -- couldn't find it. :-(
cymrullewes From: cymrullewes Date: October 8th, 2007 03:51 am (UTC) (base camp)
Uh yeah. Looking at the map that Google provided after telling it brookstone merrimack, nh it doesn't put it near it. Come up Rt 3 and turn left on Manchester St and almost before you get back to Rt 3 again it is there on the right.

We were there from 1000 to 1200. Got to ride Lon's wife's GS500. Nice enough. Got to ride unixronin's CBR929RR and had it confirmed to me that I really don't like riding it. I really want to borrow someone's Katana 600 to confirm that it is the bike for me. Several people on the NEDoD are quite convinced that I'm being a fucked up 9 year old for insisting on the Katana as my first bike. Eh. I know what I think is comfortable for me and right for me is quite quite different from the "conventional" wisdom.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: October 8th, 2007 03:57 am (UTC) (base camp)
I'm not ready to ride Route 3, though, so either I need to find an alternate route, or I won't be able to get there. Glad you had fun, though.
cymrullewes From: cymrullewes Date: October 8th, 2007 03:55 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Rt 3 in Merrimack is not Everett Turnpike. It's a 40 mph stretch. You can get on it in Nashua without getting on to the Everett Turnpike.
This might help, pinpoint on map. And that should let you enter in your start address and then you can just tell it to avoid highways. :-)
tashabear From: tashabear Date: October 8th, 2007 09:32 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Yeah, we figured we'd missed the turn or something. That's helpful -- thank you! I have Reserves next weekend, so I can't come out and play then, but maybe the 21st, if the weather holds and y'all go out to practice then. Glad you had fun, anyway!
20 trips or shoot the rapids