When I was young and foolish… I’m not young anymore!
I did some foolish things; some of them were legal, so they can be told here.
I had to have two serious hip operations one a few weeks after the other, so I set my dirt bike up in the spare room and pulled it to pieces. I got together all the paints, parts and tools for a full rebuild.
When I got out of hospital on crutches I started the painstaking job of rebuilding it. You may have read the first part of this story and know that I got myself into a lot of trouble with my girl friend at the time for riding a drag bike not long after getting out of hospital.
While not in the dog house I was building up my bike…
At first I did the small bits and pieces that I was capable of doing, but as I got stronger I managed the motor back into the frame and the wheels back on. Three months later the bike looked just like it did when I bought it new just two years earlier…only more shiny.
Just before going back into hospital I put the bike backward into my shed, right under a roof truss so I could climb it onto the bike.
A week later I was home on crutches again, and bored out of my head…
The bike was done, there was nothing for me to do. Nothing on TV, I couldn’t drive… did I mention that I was bored?
Less than two weeks after surgery I decided to try to start the bike, I clambered up onto the bike holding the truss above it and managed two painful kicks. I hung there for a few minutes and had another kick…mercifully, it started amid a cloud of rebuild oils. It sputtered until the plug cleared then the new motor idled cleanly. I adjusted the carb and since the motor was running so well…I decided to take it around the block…just the once!
Out on the wet roads (did I mention it rained all night?) the motor was crisp, after so long incapacitated I loved the freedom the bike gave me.
Since it was going so well….You know where I’m going with this don’t you?
Nearly an hour later, and far out into the bush I’m going slowly down a well known track to check out a nearby dam then home…..home because my hip is hurting like hell and I need to rest it…but cant. The crutches are leaning on the workbench back home and I can’t walk without them, if I stop I’ll fall over and I wont be able to start the bike anyway.
There is an inch of soft mud over the whole area and as I try to stay on the high ground I feel the bike slide away from me. I cant stop it and so I decide to go down with it and try to save the hip by pressing hard against the bike. Gracefully (almost) the bike slides down the embankment and we end up in a small gully full of mud, the bike on my sore leg.
I had no choice but to use my good leg against the new seat to push the bike up…and over. It crashed against the other side of the gully and I lay there considering the possible scratches on my newly built bike, it’s mud spattered corpse laying against the muddy embankment.
I’m looking about me and the nearest tree is nearly 100 metres away through soft mud and I cant stand (I tried already) I looked at the bandages on my leg and it was spotted with blood so I decide to save the hip by just waiting to be found, even if that takes until tomorrow.
I consider what my girl friend will do to me after that last incident…Hmmm!
Only an hour and a bit later I heard the thump thump of a big 4 stroke bike in the distance, I waited, hoped and willed the bike to come my way. After a while I could tell it was coming my way and presently it turned the corner above me, circled a couple of times looking for somewhere hard enough to stand the bike and stopped. The biker walked over and asked if I was “fucked up or what?”
After a short explanation he dragged my bike from the gully and set it up idling near his bike then came back and helped me up. We struggled through the mud and he just about had to lift me onto my bike. He said he’d follow me until I got to harder ground and let me go. I rode carefully the couple of kilometers to the bitumen with the thumping sound of his bike behind me, as we got near I heard him accelerate away down another track.
I was in a lot of pain, wet through and covered in mud. I wound my way home and turned the bike off as I coasted into the shed; I left it there covered with mud and went straight into the shower.
I rinsed the mud off my clothes and showered, after changing the bandage and noticing a couple of stitches were torn through I washed all the dirty clothes in the house and put dinner on.
SO…when my girl friend got home from work she found all the clothes washed and dinner ready. What a good boyfriend she had…. She didn’t suspect a thing, and didn’t go out to the shed to check the bike. Whew!
A few days later I managed to get the bike out, washed and put away, the crash hurt my leg a lot, but did no long term damage. Even now there is a wide scar on my leg to remind me of those pulled stitches.
I never told any of my friends (who would have told their GF’s, who would have told my GF, who would have killed me!) I never told anyone, ever. This is the first time I’ve told that story.