As a noob returning after so many years I made what I believed to be an important re-discovery, at least to me. Then I come in and check the board to read that my hunches are right!
As I went for my first solo ride this afternoon (logged a whopping 15 miles) I started out practicing slow turns, left, right, large circles, etc. Once I began to get a feel for the bike and how it responded, especially with 5MPH turns, I realized that in order to ride safe it would be up to me
to know my own limits and not do anything goofy. This is simple logic that anyone could agree with, but it feels much different once it has been internalized
, experienced by one’s self so to speak.
A person with little to no experience at all can read reviews and stories for months as I did and probably never fully appreciate that little tidbit of information for its full value until they get up and get out. What I got out of my first 15 miles is nothing compared to what I have left to learn, but it is miles beyond where I was 24 hours ago and I still have a lot of work ahead of me; remembering where I am in traffic, speed, road conditions, other traffic, don’t panic or react hastily, etc. but I feel better about it now and the buyer's remorse is starting to fade. WOW! What a bike!
I am also internalizing the importance of looking for idiots. Learning how to turn and do figure eights is only part of the ride. Idiots are everywhere. I wasn’t on the street more than five minutes when a guy in a pickup truck pulls up behind me and started tailgating. It made me mad! I never would have noticed that if I were in my own truck. I know now that I have to add him to my list of things to look out for.
This may be "See Spot Run" stuff for experienced riders, but for someone like me who is learning this all over again it is an interesting discovery that I hope will help me build on the basics. I know on thing... I entered my driveway a lot better than I did when I pulled out. Now I wonder what tomorrow is going to bring????
And I agree with Bikeaholic and the manipulation of statistics. In my opinion there is too much political involvement in the numbers. With enough numbers, anyone can make them do or imply the any message they desire. The key is to see beyond the text and question the message. This is something else that I was caught up in a couple of days ago.
One more thing that must be mentioned: There is almost no chance that I would have done this if not for the people in forums like this one. I’ve read through several, and every single one of them has had nothing but the nicest people who are willing to help others with tips and encouragement. Thanks to all!