How did You learn to Ride?

Don Wilcox leanintree at
Thu May 22 07:03:45 PDT 2008

For me it all began at 9 yrs old with the arrival of a Yamaha GT80 and an
IT490 in the driveway. Damn dad was cool. I had 10 acres to crash in, with
nothing more than ditches and perimeter fence to avoid. It all started with
a showering of dirt and grass courtesy of the IT's roostability at the hands
of dear old dad. 1 year later, we moved back to the mountain valley, and I
had a bigger playground and 1000 gallons of gas in the front yard. The only
caveat was "Don't go on the pavement". Since that pavement was 1 road that
bisected the valley, and a couple of creeks that met in the middle of town I
had to get creative to have full access. When I say town, I mean all 75
yr-round residents, so the 1/4 of the area that was alloted to me just
wasn't sufficient. Amazingly enough, a little GT80 will fit on a footbridge,
and goes through a bridge culvert amazingly well...

Age 14 produced an XT200 that was street legal... if Id had a license of
course. My range increased exponentially from that point. A couple years
later, that XT took me 20 miles to town on a learners permit to get my
endorsement. Mom brought the car and met me at the DMV (with me on the
bike...). Took the auto test, she left and I hung around to take the moto
test. We walked outside, the 1 DMV guy locked up the office, watched me put
on helmet and jacket and said "Go around the block and park right where your
at". To this day, I can't believe he didn't hear me wheelie on the opposite
side of the block. I pulled in a whole 2 min later, he unlocked the door and
we walked back in for the M stamp.

What happened thereafter is an entirely different series of tales.
Don in GJ

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