I had never pictured myself as the type to wear a leather fringe jacket. The only time I had ever seen one was in one of those biker films or at a music festival. But here I was on Sunday morning wearing a leather fringe jacket and leather chaps over my jeans about to get on the back of a motorcycle for the first time. As I put my helmet on my banana covered curls I started laughing.
Back in early May after I had my lung biopsy, a friend from the cancer center asked if I wanted to go on a motorcycle ride with him and a couple other people that worked there. I reluctantly said yes, secretly hoping it would rain on the actual day of our adventure. As the day drew closer, I still couldn’t believe what I was about to do.
I had just spent the week at camp and was already exhausted from arts and crafts with all ages. Who would have thought making dream catchers, fish handprints, and coloring would make me tired at the end of the day. By the end of the week, everyone was asking what my plans were after camp for the weekend. I had one friend who was working, another going on a mini golf expedition, and another going home to sleep. When I said I’d be going on a motorcycle ride with my friends from the cancer center everyone just stared at me and I could tell they didn’t know what to say. That’s my favorite - when I say something and people don’t know if I am kidding or telling the truth.
I met my friends from the cancer center last August right after I learned that I would start chemo the following week and would have to get a shot that was, "painful". I was not a happy camper and wasn't looking forward to this infamous shot. I was happily greeted by a sarcastic man at the check in desk who appreciated my humor and shot it right back at me. Then a nurse came out and had me follow him back to a room to get the, "painful" shot. As soon as I said I hated when people counted down before shots he said ok and preceded to yell, “46-42-43 hut hut hike” before sticking the extra large needle in the muscle in my arm. It must have worked because it distracted me and the shot didn’t hurt as bad as I thought it would. I would never have thought that I'd end up on motorcycle ride with them almost a year later.
There were four of us total on three bikes. I obviously was riding with someone else. There was no way I was going to try to figure out how to drive a bike. I am lucky if I can get my music to load on my phone. Once we were on the open road, I was surprised how much I like it. I never understood why my family and friends loved riding until I put myself in their shoes. We first stopped for breakfast and then after we began our 3 hour loop. We would occasionally stop here and there to stretch our legs and move around.
The scenery was beautiful. I always love going on road trips on back road, enjoying the view out my window while listening to music. However, this time was different because I was decked out in my leather ensemble and helmet with the wind blowing my fringe. I also can’t forget to mention my sneakers that really pulled the whole outfit together. Once in a while one of the members of our group would yell, “wild hogs!” or try and come up with a name for our biker gang.
The other nice thing about the day was that I was never afraid about being on the bike. I knew I would be safe based on the gear and the fact that the people have been riding for a long time. Plus, I trust these people with my life on a regular basis - so I knew they had my back.
We ended up at the end of the trip back at my driver’s house and had a nice cookout. I loved listening to them tell stories about everything and what good movies or TV shows to watch. I always am looking for new shows since I spend the majority of my time when I am home in my “office”. Everyone else calls it the TV room, but people are always barging in my office without warning. I am considering getting a sign that says: “Do not disturb.” Hello, this is a place of hard work that includes watching TV or working on my computer.