Monday, 31 May 2021

Biker Day - Bank Holiday Monday.

It's Monday, 31st May 2021, and what a gloriously sunny day it is. I'm off work due to it being a Bank Holiday ( a very antiquated institution, if you ask me ), and even as I type this the sun is lowering in the sky and casting a lovely golden hue over everything. My favourite time of the day during summer. I'm no great lover of baking hot sunshine. Don't misunderstand me, I used to be, as a teenager heading into the big, bad world with wide eyes full of naivety and innocence, and extremely 'happy-go-lucky' attitude to life.

But I digress.

One text message later and I piling on my motorcycle gear in order to meet up with my nephew and two other bikers at a Tesco petrol station en route to our destination: the Brecon Beacons, a place synonymous with ramblers, hikers, climbers, the British military, car drivers and bikers. It's part of the National Park of Wales, with glorious hills, mountains and valleys, dipping, rising and twisting roads, that, if not careful, can see a car or bike tumbling over the edge of an unguarded road. This place has claimed the lives of road users and visitors to the rugged landscape, including soldiers going through selection for the SAS. 

For more information click on the Brecon Beacons link highlighted above.

 The (deadly) Black Mountain Road - Copyright. © 2021

A wonderful day for the bike, and my gal didn't let me down - she performed beautifully and together we swept along the twisties and undulating tarmac, blessed with gorgeous vistas all around us. The ramblers were out massively, cars parked left and right on the grass verges due to the official car parks already full to capacity. But we breezed past sedately, if rather loudly.

The growling of the bikes was, at times, rather glorious, especially when all three bikes were going through the rev range together. The wind, the sunshine, hot tyres gripping the asphalt bends, and when appropriate, the adrenalin-inducing acceleration. But through it all, at the forefront of your mind are the other road users. Any one of them can do something unexpected and turn an enjoyable day into disaster, so eyes are everywhere constantly scanning, assessing, hands and feet adjusting from brake, clutch, throttle, clutch, brake, over and over.

And that's what makes motorcycle riding a thrilling experience, becoming one entity with your machine, as daft and as clich├ęd as that sounds, but true. 

I've owned my bike for two years now, and when I look at her I still love the styling, the curves and lines, the shining, polished engine bolts, but most of all, the silent, unspoken power she possesses. It was, quite literally love at first sight. My beautiful, quietly menacing, and often hooligan Yamaha XSR900.

My 'Baby Blue' - Copyright. © 2021 - Mark Kelly.

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