Kinda sad (indirectly motorcycle-related)

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by N. Cognito, Jun 10, 2020.

  1. N. Cognito

    N. Cognito Well-Known Member

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    Apologies if this is either long-winded or disjointed, but I want to talk this out, and I know you folks will understand.

    We sold Miz Cognito's Ninjette (Ninja 250) today. The sad part is that I'm reasonably sure she won't get another bike.

    She started riding on her own determination a few years after we got married. Did it right: Took the MSF course, started small (Nighthawk 250). Got and wore good gear. Pretty much a natural: Attentive, learned the right skills and avoided most of the bad habits. Put a reasonable number of miles on that bike.

    Wanted to go farther afield. Found a leftover Yamaha Seca 600. For a 4-cylinder bike, it was docile as a kitten, but it had enough oomph to manage highway speed easily. Slightly taller windscreen, set of GiVi bags, and an RKA tank bag, and she was GTG. And go we did. Summertime, wintertime, no biggie. Rain? Fuggetit. Keep going. Cold? Where's the snowmobile suit?

    Then, in 2002, she developed a neurologic condition that sapped the strength in her left leg. After some deliberation, she decided to sell her beloved Seca. It went to the SO of a friend. Didn't make it any easier to drive away from the sale. But, she knew/hoped that at some point in the future...

    It really wasn't a topic of discussion. I never stopped riding, and she was (and is) the best pillion companion I've ever had. Doesn't hurt that she's small and light, I joke that she has no more influence on the handling of the bike than saddlebags.

    But then, out of the clear blue, she sends me a picture of herself on a Kawasaki ER6-n. WTF? That starts the search, and this gorgeous

    Ninjette_2A.jpg

    low mile 2012 Ninjette presents itself. A deal was made and it came home. Did I mention that Miz Cognito is smart? We did several range sessions in a shopping center lot so she could refamiliarize herself with stopping, starting, weaving, etc, before we got back out on solo rides. It was "just like riding a bike."

    Her condition limits how hot it can be when she rides, so summer 2012 was limited to early day rides. We were all set for a great fall of riding, when I suffered an acute attack of the dumba**. I went out to test a repair on my '75 BMW, which (in case you weren't around the) did not have a sidestand interlock. Story somewhat shortened, I ended up in the front yard of a house <1/2 mile away with a broken collarbone, broken ribs, and a collapsed lung (@ 40 MPH, BTW). So, I managed to f-up our 2012 riding season.

    There were a few practice trips to the "range" the next year. Unfortunately, her condition is both variable and progressive. The left leg is now pretty good, but the right leg is feeble-ish, and her balance has begun to suffer, taking her confidence with it. As a result, the bike never again saw the open road under her control. She would test-sit it from time to time, to see if she could get on and off and pick it up from the sidestand, but that's it.

    At some point, she started talking about selling it. TBH, I soft-pedaled that effort, hoping that some combination of nerve, strength, and balance would return, and she could at least go back to the parking lot to practice, and then head out onto the country roads, but... We put it up for sale last year, but other than the nonsense responses of the ad, only one person actually looked at it. The ad lapsed, and we didn't renew it.

    But a couple days ago, knowing that this was prime-time to try to sell, with decent weather and people getting back outside, we posted the ad again. Our relative good fortune found a buyer in the second person to respond to the ad (if you want to doubt people's goodness, post a motorcycle on Craigslist). She couldn't look at it when she left for work this morning, or when I had to swing by her office with it on the trailer to get her signature on some paperwork.

    It's going to a good home, as a first-ish bike for a 19 year old. A good home with six other motorcycles owned by his dad (Ducati enthusiast), brother and stepbrother. We know she'll be ridden, enjoyed, and well-maintained. I still couldn't watch the dad ride away.

    Breaks my heart.
     
    #1 N. Cognito, Jun 10, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2020
    muz, Papa Lar, ScotD and 3 others like this.
  2. Baldhead_J

    Baldhead_J Gold Member
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    I feel for you both. Hopefully she'll love that you still value her as a co-pilot, want her to travel with you, and she can always use her latent skills if there's ever an emergency.
    Best of luck to her!
     
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  3. Alpal

    Alpal Gold Member
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    Baldhead said it all for me bud,.......It has to hurt,.....
     
  4. will

    will Bronze Member
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    Sorry to hear of her situation, my heart felt sympathy.
    That being said, has she thought about a sidecar? No balance needed You do need a little more upper body strength, but not crazy strong. I’d rather be in the grave than give riding up.
    Good luck to her and you no matter what she decides.
     
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  5. doublej

    doublej Silver Member
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    Tough story....sorry to read.

    There's a product called LegUp LegUp by Chopper Design - LegUp Home Page which is one of the most innovative inventions I've seen for motorcycles.....reasonably priced too. Unlike a sidecar, or trike, they allow the motorcycle to lean (which is the one thing that makes riding a motorcycle a very unique experience) , but yet provide balance at slow speed or when stopped. Ingenious if you ask me....my best to you both.
     
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  6. IronButt70

    IronButt70 Bronze Member

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    I know exactly how you feel. My wife never had a desire to have her own bike but rode with me as navigator for years. 5 years ago she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. She hasn’t ridden with me since. I know she could but the anxiety has taken over and I don’t bring it up any more. Broken heart here too.
     
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  7. Rodd

    Rodd Bronze Member

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    You have bared a lot here @N. Cognito and I also feel your pain. It would seem that selling this Ninja means far more to both of you than just selling another bike; you have done that before and it didn't feel like this. Your wife couldn't look at the Ninja as it was going away, why? I suspect that for her it means putting a line in the sand that probably can't be crossed back over. A painful reminder of the reality and progression of her neurologic condition.

    Us blokes like to fix stuff, we like to make it right, but unfortunately sometimes we can't. Sometimes we just have to be there for them.
    If there is a silver lining - it is the wonderful thing that you both enjoy getting out on your bike together.
    My wife never had the inclination to ride solo but she does really enjoy being my pillion. We share so many wonderful times on the road.

    As @will said, 3 wheels may be something for the future. Wouldn't matter if it was a sidecar, a trike, or even a Spyder. That legup thing @doublej posted looks interesting too.
    I actually owned a Spyder for a year while recovering from a big off. It certainly wasn't a bike but it was a lot of fun, and surprisingly quick.

    Whatever the future brings you both, go well, and above all, continue to enjoy each other's company.
     
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  8. IronButt70

    IronButt70 Bronze Member

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    Here is another alternative to a trike. I’ve seen one in person and spoke to the owner. He absolutely loved it and said it was a blast in the twisties
     
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  9. N. Cognito

    N. Cognito Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, all.

    She's loosely considering a Spyder or a Ryker (the smaller one),

    @IronButt70 : That's really cool. Wonder if they'd prototype a Scout?
     
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  10. doublej

    doublej Silver Member
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    Heard these are unreliable from a mechanic at a dealership that sells them....I do not have a dog in the fight....whatever way you go, I wish you the best....
     
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  11. BigDawg

    BigDawg Well-Known Member

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    Wow, that's a tough story to read. It's great that she is still comfortable, and happy, riding pillion. I had some friends that I used to ride with that went through a similar situation. The wife was a passenger, then decided to learn to ride. She ended up on a V-Star 650. She rode with us for a few years, then she almost wrecked it. We were stopped at a light, one bike went forward on the green, another one didn't, and she dropped it. No real damage to the bike. But now she cannot even ride as a passenger anymore. The last year, before the group disbanded, she would just follow in her car.

    So, I am sure glad to hear that Miz Cognito is still your riding partner ! ! !





    BD
     
  12. BagBoy

    BagBoy Well-Known Member

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    Good story, thanks for sharing.
     
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