Friday, April 27, 2012

The Riderz Diaries -2

Jason on the wheels 

Geared up for the road trip .. Jason with the red beauty
Shooting round the city bends I hear the conversation in my head.
Thinking of the place to be, I sing a little melody instead
I won’t argue with myself, today my legs are gettin some hell

My mother tells me I should stop go and get a real job
That can’t be the way that I roll
Everybody’s growing up, having kids and paying rent
And I’m getting count of it all.
I’m gonna ride my bike until I get home.

Here are the incepts from the interview with Jason Goertz Washington,USA – A rider at heart. 

1. Why biking – what was your inspiration for living life on two wheels?
For me, it was something new to learn, as I was bored.  I had an airplane at the time, and motorcycling is a similar experience to flying.  Since then, I have given up the plane and just have the bikes.  I didn’t start out to “live” on 2 wheels, but it has sort of turned into that.  It is meditative.  I can clear my head and focus on the road and on issues I am facing at the same time.
2.  Since when have you been riding and which was the first bike? Also elaborate on how you bought it- a gift from parents, money saved or borrowed, with the first salary, or something else. 

I got my endorsement in October of 2000, just shy of my 45th birthday. I bought, my first “learner” bike in November, a 1982 Yamaha Virago 1100.  It was a beater, but it was a great bike to drop.  Both my wife and I learned on that bike, we sold it to a friend for what we paid for it.  My first new bike I bought the next February.  I had just started a new job, and I used part of my signing bonus as the down payment, and got a loan for the remainder, which I paid off in 3 years or so.

I still have that bike, and I have owned 7 bikes.  4 Goldwings, a ST1100, a V-strom.  Some of them I bought with a loan, the ST1100 I actually bought with a credit card, and the V-strom I bought with cash from a yearly bonus.  Some I had the cash after selling my airplane and buying my house.

3.   Which is your best road trip so far? The most memorable one. The one you would want to relive provided an option. 

My wife and I did a 3400 mile trip last year from Seattle to Provo, UT, and then made a big loop around Arizona.  We hit Arches NP, 4 corners, Monument Valley, the Navajo and Hopi Reservations, stayed in a resort in Sedona, spent several days in the Grand Canyon, then a spa day in St. George, UT.  Then home. 
I am not sure I would want to repeat the trip exactly. We would definitely go back to some of the places if we had more time.  We had a lot of trials on that trip too, the wind and weather, and my wife narrowly avoiding getting severely injured or killed when a large rock came off a dump truck in front of her.  This was 4 hours from home, after 18 days!  Her visor was down and it took the brunt, and she was able to keep the bike up.
Other great memories are going through Yellowstone on my Goldwing with no helmet, stopping a few feet from bison, and cruising up and putting down my kickstand as Old Faithful erupted.  That was on the way home from a weeklong trip to Billings, Montana for a national Gold Wing Rally.

4.  Have you ridden pillion – some memorable moment

Not as a rule.  The last time I rode pillion was when I was in college, working at a summer job.  I had never ridden before, and had to go home with a co-worker.  He rode, and I rode on the back, scariest thing I’ve ever done.  Now, I take people for rides on my “Barcalounger on wheels”, my Gold Wing, with a very comfortable back seat, intercom, radio, etc.

5.  How many bikes have you had so far and which has been your favorite one. Reasons for picking it?

As I mentioned it, I’ve had 8 bikes total, and currently own 3 of them.  I guess my favorite is my Goldwing.  I have had 4, all used except for the one I have now.  I bought the first one to commute to campus from Federal Way, utilizing the carpool lanes.  I got progressively newer and nicer ones until I got my 2004, as an early 50’Th birthday present to myself.
I love LONG trips, and it is so comfortable (for a motorcycle) I can ignore most physical discomfort and just focus on riding.  I have done two Iron Butt rides on it (Iron Butt Association is a group where you ride 1000 miles in 24 hours just to join).  I might try another on my Shadow, as a challenge, but the Wing makes riding very enjoyable for me.
6.  Your dream road trip?

My bucket list would be to take a month or 6 weeks to go back east to the big touring rallies, like Americade in Lake George, and a few others.  I’d come back to Chicago, and ride Route 66 with an organized tour, or maybe just on my own.  Then come up the west coast on Hwy 1.

7.  Do you ride as part of a group or a club? Or you are the one who prefers the comfort of your bike’s company on the sands and hills. 

Yes, I am heavily involved with the local Gold Wing Touring Association chapter here in Redmond/Bellevue.  I am currently the Ride Coordinator, but I have been the Chapter Director and Assistant Chapter Director, and the Newsletter editor for 6 years.  I like both, riding is unique in that it is a solitary activity that can be done in a group.  I do some off the road riding, nothing too technical, forest service roads and that sort of thing. I hope to do more camping, by myself, this year. This is a totally different type of riding than what the GoldWing groups do. 

8. Some tips for the novice riding enthusiasts? Safety and otherwise.

Wear good gear all the time (ATGATT, All the Gear, All the Time).
Know that when you get your endorsement, it only allows you to legally learn on public roads, but will continue to learn.  In flying, a Private Pilot’s license (which takes $10,000 and maybe a year to earn) is called a “License to Learn”.  Think of your endorsement as the same thing.
Don’t forget to slow down enough to smell the smells and feel the sunshine.

9.  Please share some of the favorite moments from your riding journeys (I won’t call them tripsJ).  

The aforementioned ride through Yellowstone is one. Coming around a hill on my V-strom on a forest road barely accessible by car and seeing Mt. Adams in full view. Seeing the red rocks of Sedona, the Grand Canyon, and the formations of Monument valley without a windshield in the way is another.  Ironically, I was going the wrong direction through Monument Valley, and all the famous views were in my rear view mirror! I vowed to come back and go the right direction.

That was Jason and his riding journey so far. With may more rides to come on roads ahead.. there is a something that comes to my mind

Parked up on the long ride home..

                Rolling on the sand, I went away
                Alone in the dark, alone in the way
                Wheels were my friends all along
 Riding is my passion – nothing right nothing wrong ….

This post is a part of but not limited to : castrol and Indiblogger contest

1 comment:

  1. Nice to hear - how people think about motorcyling in the other parts of the world.

    Thanks for the same,

    Here's my entry to the same contest

    PS: keep writing