This has been my life the past week or so. Just a running blur. Mixed in between were a couple of training classes. I thought it might be fun to share a few images from the classes with you. The photos are actually from two classes despite the post title. "Images from two weekends" just didn't flow right!
I'm sure it's no surprise that I have an ego. A pretty big one, actually. It's something I try to leave at home when I'm teaching students or training instructors. Yes, I'm darn good at a number of things. Riding a motorcycle being one of them. However, training is about "them", not "me". An ego can get in the way. So I suppress mine. Interestingly, sometimes it's somebody else doing it for me. Take the first night of class, for example.
In this case it was Thursday night. Sometime right after lunch on Thursday the skies started dumping rain. Having been out in the rain all afternoon, I rode to class. So, if you're a new motorcycle student, wouldn't it be important for your instructor to have credibility as a rider? At least, that's my story.....
Truth be told, most of the students don't even notice or care. They are so inwardly involved with their own processes there's not much attention left for anything else. Obviously, it's important for an instructor to have their students trust them, but that happens during the class. It doesn't really matter if the instructor rides or not. To the students, anyway.
I just like having the reputation of a rough, tough, hardcore rider. I suffer a lot in nasty weather to keep and enhance that reputation. Maybe I rode in the nasty rain and wind just to show off. Did I mention I have an ego? Well, my ego was just about to be shattered.
Pulling into the lot near the classroom I spot a familiar bike. Perhaps you will recognize it, as well.
There was the 250 Rebel belonging to Balisada. She has a picture of our two bikes on her April 1 blog post. Balisada says she was riding because her truck had a flat tire. Let me tell you, I see her out on a bike in all kinds of weather. Pretty darn often, too. I even have photos of her riding the Rebel on a track during our Advanced Rider Training class.
I was instantly humbled. My Grandfather used to quell my youthful boasting with a couple of things. As if he should counsel me about boasting! Anyway, one of his stories was about a sturgeon and a hen.
He would tell me how a sturgeon would lay thousands of eggs but nobody knew it. The work happened deep under the water in the dark. A hen would lay one egg then run around the farm flapping her beak about it. The hen got the most attention, but which one really accomplished the most?
Weird story, isn't it? Guess you had to be raised a cowboy to understand. Right afterwards, Gramp would remind me of how it was the empty barrel that made the most noise.
One of us boasts a bit on our blog and the other one just quietly goes about her business. Who's really hardcore, after all? I hereby bestow upon Balisada the new title of Iron Tigress. To totally understand this, click on this post. Check out her helmet. Seeing as to how Balisada has a playful side, perhaps she would prefer Iron Tigger. Take whichever one you want, girl!
By Saturday afternoon we had a temporary reprieve from the rain. Construction leftovers have left a bit of mud and debris hanging about. Yes, that's Balisada's bike again. She works for the college's Security Department.
There are always new groups of students eager and ready to go. Here's the group from one weekend.
Here's the group from the next. So many different personalities. I always think of myself as the catalyst that brings them all together into a harmonious whole.
These pictures are from our last exercise of the course. We set up a miniature city with plenty of opportunities for traffic interaction. The perimeter is one way to the left. Inside lanes are two way traffic. The center is a four way stop. Students have to stop before entering the perimeter. All twelve ride at the same time. We even expect them to use turn signals and cancel them. Imagine!
Static practice on the bikes on how to manage a turn from a stop and stay in your own lane.
The following photos are students riding the exercise.
Some instructors call this exercise controlled chaos. Sometimes the students get uncomfortably close to each other like below.
Instructors cast a watchful eye on the group to keep them safe. ( I'm playing with shutter speeds to create a sense of action and movement. )
Douglas is a long time fireman. Not much fazes him. He's a steely eyed missle man taking care of business.
When all is said and done, time for a nice cup of coffee to end the day. I'm at Allann Brothers Beanery. And you thought I only went to Starbucks, didn't you? Actually, I had a date with Katie and we like to sit outside on the patio when we can. Oh, yeah, I'm drinking the Storm Trooper Blend. ( actually, they do have a blend called Oregon State Trooper: State Police headquarters are just down the street )