This is My 2 Wheel Story - Elaine Morris

This is My 2 Wheel Story

finley tattooToday is August 9, 2007.  In four months I’ll have been on this earth fifty four years.  Why would a woman want to admit she has passed the forty nine year mark, you might be wondering.  I’M admitting it because this is the best time in my life.  Matter of fact, I got my first tattoo yesterday.  It’s a daisy with my precious granddaughters name below it. I was raised in south Florida and spent a LOT of time on a motorcycle.  Started off as my boyfriends “bitch”, which I better not be called today, then ended up riding my own.  Back in those days that wasn’t a common thing to see.  After a couple of very unfortunate … events… I got off the bike and didn’t even sit on another one until thirty years later.  I moved to Georgia, got married, had a beautiful baby girl, got divorced, raised my daughter.  I was content, but not happy with the way life was moving.

hikingIn 1993, I started hiking and backpacking a lot; I made some great friends, learned how to maintain a trail as an active member of the Georgia Appalachian Trail Club, and life was beginning to turn around.  I was having a great time out in the forest and was able to do quite a bit of soul searching and getting to know myself as a woman, not just as a mother. But, there was still something missing. I started doing yoga and working very hard with a coach on meditation and other holistic practices trying to find what it was I knew was there, but just out of reach.  I could almost taste it… it tasted like wind, cool mornings, hot, humid afternoons, fresh cut fields and chicken houses.  It smelled like leather.  Shortly after that, I reconnected with a guy I had lived with several years earlier.  He had been raised on a bike as well, but had taken time off.  He pulled up on a Harley.  Tommy is someone I can trust with my life, so I hopped on the back and we went riding.  THAT WAS IT!  I found IT!  It was a pretty emotional evening for me because I knew what was going to happen… and it didn’t involve riding Tommy.

A lot happened between that night and the next couple years.  I wouldn’t ride with anyone other than Tommy, but our timing was still not right, so after buying leathers and getting that taste in my mouth again, we took a break from each other and I was back off the bike.  I was so sad and began another search for something to fulfill that need.  Then my daughter and son-in-law announced I was going to be a grandmother.  That was the BEST news I had ever received, even though I wasn’t ready to be a grandma until that very second.  I went into work the next day, turned in my retirement papers.  I was going to be away from the corporate world on April, 7, 2006, the baby was due June 9, 2006.  Life truly was turning around.

Tommy and I remained close, so when I told him I was retiring, he wanted to take me on a week long road trip on the bike.  We went from GA to TN to NC.  Rode the Blue Ridge Parkway, grabbed The Dragon by the tail, visited with friends.  The need had been met again and I knew I’d have to have my own bike.

shadowAs soon as I got home from the ride, I started the search.  I knew what I wanted, what I could spend and found it really fast.  Matter of fact, it was the only bike I looked at.  It’s a 2004 Honda Shadow Aero 750.  It had 2300 miles on it and was perfect!  I was handed the key and the title on May 7, 2006.  Needless to say, I rode up and down the driveway for a week before I got the nerve up to go down to the cul-de-sac.  Rode the bike for three months, took the MSF course and joined the Southern Cruisers Riding Club (SCRC).  I had IT back.  I was now beginning to feel like MY life was back.  I was becoming ME again.

Joining SCRC was the best thing I could have done.  This chapter (Stone Mountain Chapter 221) is a tight group.  They immediately took me in as one of theirs and helped me regain the confidence I needed to really enjoy the life I was re-entering.  Some of the guys took me out riding during the week, so I could rebuild my skills, then when I was ready for a larger group, another one or two would join us.  Shortly, I was riding in a group of ten or fifteen bikes and they were all protecting me and helping me along.

  riders 1      riders 2              

It wasn’t long before I rode in my first big LEO escorted ride for the Children’s Miracle Network. I think there were 670 bikes on that ride.  It was very emotional as we rode down the expressways through Atlanta.  The entrance ramps were closed, cars parked on the side and people cheering us on.  Then when we rode in front of the three children’s hospitals and saw the kids outside waving from their little wheelchairs and wagons… well… I lost it.  Tears were flowing uncontrollably and I was hooked.  That was several big rides ago.  I’m now involved with the Patriot Guard Riders and it is one emotional ride after another.  Since I didn’t serve our country in the military, I figure this is something I can do to show my gratitude to the families of our fallen hero’s, as well as to the soldiers who are blessed enough to come home alive.  It’s an amazing thing to be a part of and I feel very fortunate to have joined this group.

coffee in the rainI just got back from a ride to TN and NC.  Spent the weekend riding the Cherohala Skyway and The Dragon.  It was SO much fun to be up there.  There was a Hawg Rally in Knoxville, TN that weekend, so lots of those folks ended up in Robbinsville, NC at the hotel we were staying in.  It was a BLAST!  Walking into the lobby to register was like walking into a family reunion, even though we had never seen each other before.  Something about people that enjoy the same lifestyle we do.  You never meet a stranger.  We laughed and told stories like we were old buds.  Ya just gotta love it.  This Saturday, we’ll ride three hours to partake of the best hotdog in the state of GA.  That’s yet another thing about people who ride.  We also love to eat and will ride for miles to eat a ‘dog’.

Well, I guess that about sums it up for me.  I could go on and on with my love of riding, but time is limited… I have to get out there and clean up the rain splatters, bugs and general dirt from my last ride… gotta get ready for the next one.  After all… that’s what it’s all about… getting ready to do it all over again… and again… and again…  Ride safe my friends.

Elaine Morris
Dacula, GA
August, 2007