It is that time of year to take the cover off the bike, refresh the fluids, invest in new tires, find that 10mm wrench, and get to work.
There is a thing about wrenching that is very grounding. The physical turn of the wrench, the removal of bolts, schlepping of metal, and replacing gaskets and seals provide endorphins where I find myself returning to it again and again.
Regardless of the project, the wrenching process itself can be illuminating. With the proper diagnostic mindset, you end up finding out more about yourself in the process. The blood, sweat, and profanity of a pinched finger are essential elements.
“The real cycle you’re working on is a cycle called yourself.”
Similar to wrenching your machine for improvement, journaling sharpens the mind. It is the process of self-reflection through writing. Similar to fresh oil in a machine, journaling helps clear the mind, improving arterial flow to the brain. The habit of wrenching your mind daily with pencil and paper provides profound creative bursts of insight. At the end of the wrenching session, you may feel as if you have solved all of the world’s problems.
Sometimes when I wake up, I don’t feel like going to work. The sheets are warm and it is still dark outside. The blackness of sleep engulfs my brain. I think to myself I should really get a work-from-home kind of job. It is Monday afterall. The call from management with someone saying, You know what, take the day off doesn’t ever ring.
Then I remember, I’m riding my motorcycle to work. I literally spring out of bed like an activated mousetrap. I think about skipping the coffee (but I don’t) and I race out the door and ride slow because life is the journey.
Being able to hop on and ride the KLR650 turns the morning slog into an adventure. This one factor changes everything I had previously thought about the day.
The gray fog world transforms as the sun bursts pink and orange. Rising over the trees, shining bright and almost blinding my eyes from the traffic light, I accelerate and smile east into the sun. I have a 360 degree view.
As I shift from second to third, I think, riding to work is far better than driving to work (and safer if everyone did it). You are super aware of your surroundings. Your radar is sharp, defensive driving skills astute. You’re not complacent or distracted. You don’t text and drive. I am always surprised why more people don’t ride. It is okay. Drivers just don’t know how much fun they are missing out on.
Life is undoubtedly better on a motorcycle. Riding is like being in a secret society. Passing by other riders, you give the friendly low wave, the acknowledgment nod. Cruising by you both know you have the same shared joy.