Interlude: Aka chan, my girlfriend!

I have a new car, and it is a motor scooter. In specific, my new motor vehicle is a red 2002 Honda Reflex. It is a maxi scooter; a motor scooter that is legal on freeways and interstates. It is ten years old, but looks and runs quite new. It should as it had but 6,300 miles on it at the time of purchase. I would like to soon have its drive belt checked, change coolant and hoses, and a few other things, as they are ten years old. I have changed the engine oil and am running it on Mobil 1 full synthetic motorcycle oil, 10 – 40.
I also value my head, and certainly don t want a bonk to it turning me into an entee. I was surprised when I found a polycarbonate shell helmet to be Snell Approved. So many years ago as I last rode only FRP helmets passed. But this HJC helmet is a Snell 2010 Approved full face. I felt naked with the came-with-the-bike DOT only shorty on my melon!
I am surprised with the Honda’s capabilities. It is seemingly as quick and speed capable as my old Honda CB 350 G! It never impedes traffic (I do, I ride at the speed limit. I am autistic after all!), with either cruise or acceleration. I cannot yet ride freeways as I have still only a learner’s permit, but have cruised at 65 MPH, it has power remaining. It not only has the power for speed, it is stable at speeds. At 65 it felt unstressed and stable and good. The gusting winds and hills in no way perturbed the little machine. It has been averaging 70 MPG with correction made for an approximate 5% odometer over read. I like it.
Indeed, I like it. I have ridden motorcycles before. This is my third departure from cars into the land of two wheeled motor vehicles. Each time it has been due to matters of my personal economics. I do not thrive in this world. I simply lack funds to operate a car. My cars are bought cheap and operated at great cost and with huge uncertainty. One can get more for the money with motorcycles than with cars. I can have a decent bike. Further, there are fewer complex systems to fail and need work, or leave me stranded along the road, inside a bike.
I have more good associations with bikes than with cars. Okay, my Yamaha and my Suzuki both sucked mud as did my Honda Gold Wing. But my Hondas: CB 100, CB 350 G, and CB 750 F were spectacularly good. In the realm of cars only my Yugo was any good, and inasmuch as it was destroyed in a collision about a year after I bought it I don’t know how long it would have remained good long term. I have never been injured on a bike while that Yugo ruining crash gave me a whiplash that still causes me pain. Bikes, powered or not have always been freedom to me, from bicycles early on in life that took me away from my house and family which were places of abuse and pain and hatred.
And I appreciate this bike. I have for so much of my life been trapped at home even as a car sits outside having consumed my last dollar and then requiring more before it will again run. I buy cars that are circling the drain, and offer them hospice care. Without any ability to leave them, houses become prisons. Go to the store to buy what I need for a project or to make dinner really good? Nope. See a friend? Nope? Take a speaking engagement? Nope. Let alone hit the road to blow the cobwebs out of my mind. Can’t do those things when the vehicle is broken. Can t do these things when I fear so much an on the road failure. Can’t do when I am so aware of the actual operating cost. I can ride again, the highway will soon be mine! This little bike is a jailbreak! I have keys to my cell, and a willing accomplice!
I appreciate the scooter. It may not be as impressive as a twin cam sport seven and a half. It will do all that I need and most of all that I want. When prices were lower, when I had my mother to live with and our combined earnings, I could own such a machine as that seven fifty. I cannot now. But my ten year old scooter does just fine. I have wheels and I like it. It will probably run for a long time. I don’t have to do a cost analysis before i press its start button.
And it is on two wheels. That just plain damn feels good. I have so many good associations and so few bad ones with two wheelers. I have never been hurt on two wheels, I took my only real vacation on two wheels. But then, my fondness for motorcycles is probably deeper than that. The first time I rode a motorcycle I knew that something was right. I have known people who don t like motorcycles. I have known riders who really should not have been. To each her own, and bikes feel right to me. I am back in the saddle again and I like it,
Dang! A bike! I am properly on two wheels once more. I have for the first time in twenty years a usable motor vehicle. This is so much more than a motor scooter. This is distilled freedom, painted red. I am getting choked up just thinking of my metal and plastic friend! Her name is Aka – red in Japanese. Red seemed right as she is truly RED, but American English seemed so wrong. The little road eater looks Japanese, like something out of anime or manga! Her name simply had to reflect that. And Aka chan where chan is a diminutive of fond association. Yeah, Aka chan.
This could not have happened without the Arizona TASH award! That thousand dollars paid half of the buy in! I had not been looking, but my friend and producer of documentary ”Vectors of Autism” – about my being an autistic adult, and also producer of my life, Susan Marks, was watching Craig’s List! She found the bike, drove me there, and assisted in negotiation. I could not do this alone. I am fortunate to have the bike, far more so to be surrounded by such wonderful people!
Such happiness! I will ride to get to speaking engagements, to friend’s houses, to the store, I will get my kayak wet again, I will ride to clear mind and soul. I hope little Aka chan lasts for a long time; oh, and that I don’t get myself all kilt up!


4 Responses to Interlude: Aka chan, my girlfriend!

  1. My brother recommended I might like this website. He was once totally right. This put up truly made my day. You cann’t consider simply how a lot time I had spent for this information! Thanks!

    • Laura says:

      Thanks to both you and your brother! I hope you hang around the blog, I am a semi social Aspie and love company!


  2. Cheryl says:

    She’s a beauty! Congratulations.

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