Why The Risk Is Worth The Reward
When people learn of my travels, that my 1998 VFR800 has over 100,000 sport-touring miles and how I tour for multiple weeks camping off the bike, probing questions begin: Why do I do it? Is it worth it? Should they do it?
The why of motorcycle travel is intangible: if you have to ask why you will never understand the answer. Yet, in an attempt to persuade those hesitant to begin their journey, this is why.
A motorcycle is both the “how” and the “why”.
Man’s function is not to survive but to live, to put life in our years, not add years to our life. The world belongs to those who regard their life loosely while holding their dreams tightly and at our passing, as our life plays out before our aged soul, we will contemplate a life fully explored or squandered in safety.
Very risky. Possibly stupid.
What bitter end the cancer of regret brings, gnawing at a life half-lived, half-loved. Greater is the suffering of that regret than the pain of failure in unsuccessful attempt. How horrible to be buried with our disappointment, lost chances and dead hopes. Dreams are the bridge that span that chasm between who we are and who we want to be.
Maps make the room worth living in.
Therefore we should grasp the handlebars tightly and hold our life loosely for what good is the lament we take to our coffin. Buy a bike, gather gear and unfurl maps that reveal God’s country of vast deserts, high mountain passes, thick forests and rolling fields of wheat.
Then go. Pack bottomless courage and leave. Disappear beyond the horizon for the weekend, the week, the month or the season for no soul regrets a day spent on the motorcycle.
Forgo the urban vomit of fast food chains for the home baked pie, skip the hotel for the tent and have a compass heading instead of a destination for it is the nature of the motorcycle to make the pie taste better, the tent more luxurious and the far horizon inviting. Find wonder in speed, seek beauty in the simple and marvel at nature.
Every corner reveals a new adventure.
The motorcycle magnifies these elements and all the rest, squeezing more life into one day than most reap in a year, a metal megaphone through which our soul screams our existence. Few and rare are those willing to throw their body over the barely restrained chaos of combustion delicately balanced on two wheels with two fists and one heart.
Man was not meant for metal wheeled prisons. Resist the cage and let slip the dreams of lands yet unexplored because on a motorcycle the journey is the adventure.
There is no time to waste.