I turned 29 this year. The old CBR in my garage is 32 years old; the VFR sitting next to it is younger at 18, and my replacement VFR in the UK is even younger at 16.
All of these bikes continue to exist because people like me, and you, give them life. Without us, they’d merely be peculiar creations of strange beings on a blue planet.
So, having lived abroad in Bulgaria for over 3 years, a strange mirroring of this whole scenario began calling me into action.
I recently concluded that the roads here don’t cut it for me, and that I am just not riding enough as a result. In my stomach, there happened a growing pang for some familiarity where I could return to that peaceful moment of, “I don’t want to get home just yet”.
Hell, I even miss my M6 commute when I was working at Triumph. I miss the country road blast when I was at Honda. I even miss Stuart Garner’s old Aston Martin sitting outside the Norton factory as I, an apprentice, wondered how many brews I’d make today.
All of this recently hit me like a train, and I realised that, just as the bikes rely on us to live as they were meant too, so do I need them to feel at ease.
Not only that, but I miss all of the connections I made along the way, and the crazy stories that came from it all. Have you ever carried a Domiracer down a narrow staircase for a gourmet hotdog restaurant? I have, and yet I wish this is how team buildings were done.
It’s this revelation that has driven me to return to where I came from, though unfortunately, as with all growth, sometimes it is necessarily painful.
My dad? A stubborn git who says there is no room for two bikes, so the battered, weathered, loyal CBR won’t be coming. And I, in mourning, must send it to the next life, however that may be.