Take away my belt and shoe laces. Keep me away from sharp objects for a while. In a moment of reason and clarity I sold my Aprilia Caponord. I'm not proud of being so wise. Reason and clarity should have little to do with motorcycle ownership or divestiture. Most of my years of motorcycle ownership are a testament to a lack of reason and a commitment to a passion for bikes that has no connection to clarity beyond a clear understanding of my need to own bikes and ride them.
Lately I have been making more use of the Honda ST1300 while the Caponord with it's lovely Remus non-mufflers sat idle in the garage. I took the Capo for a long ride a few weeks back up to the foothill mining town of Globe and then southward through Winkleman, AZ and other forgettable spots. The road was nice though and the bike reminded me of why I loved the Aprilia and how intensely Italian bikes can get into the blood. But other matters press in and the Honda will meet my moto needs for a time and the Aprilia was too expensive to sit little used in the garage. I keep telling myself that.
So back on the 18th of November I stood in the driveway and watch Gerry from Tucson ride happily away on my beloved Caponord. Rarely have I felt such pangs when a bike departed. The 1974 BMW R90S did it to me as did the 1999 Kawasaki Drifter 1500.
I envied Gerry. He's nice guy and a true bike enthusiast but his wad of hundred dollar bills in my pocket felt insufficient to console me. I had the sense that it would be some time before motorcycle passion the equal of an Aprilia would occupy the garage again. I'm a guy and guys don't cry but we do sit in a Lazy Boy recliner and stare morosely while we think about rides past on a bike now gone.
Yes, I have the ST1300 and it is a really wonderful motorcycle but "Honda" and "passion" are something of a contradiction. One of the few knocks on the Honda ST1300 is that it's too automotive, too seamless, too refined. It all true although not to the extent that it is with a Gold Wing. "Aprilia" and "passion" are a natural fit, however.
OK yeah, I've already begun thinking about what bike comes next but it will be some time in 2006 before that happens. In the mean time I miss the Caponord and most of all I miss the sound of the engine makes as you roll fast into a moderate turn and the exhaust rumbles down to the gear change.
My wife (who, by the way, had not urged or even suggested that I sell the Capo), did inquire as to why I actually needed more than one bike. Sweet, innocent child! She is only now beginning to understand how deeply bikes are embedded in my brain and heart. I assured her that I did not need a second bike as one needs air to breath but I would in time buy a second one just because I love bikes. I've own 39 bikes in 39 years of riding and I'm guessing there is a ratio there that will be continued in the future. As I often said "I don't smoke, I don't drink, I don't do drugs, I don't consort with women of easy virtue, I just ride motorcycles."
So I took the reason-tainted money from the sale of the Capo and paid a few bills and made plans for other things and continue to enjoy the Honda if not enjoy it passionately. I'm having a fine time on the ST but one something's missing.
In time, after the financial dust has cleared, something has to give. Financial considerations will have to be put aside as something must arrive in the garage that makes my pulse quicken at the thought of fast turns and exhaust notes. The Honda won't do it but a Tuono or Caponord Rally Raid would. Or maybe that new Triumph Scrambler. After all, 2006 will mark the 40th year since I first soloed on a motorcycle and it wouldn't be proper to let such a momentous occasion pass without buying the 40th bike. Now there's a moment of reason and clarity!