I knew I wanted to ride my own motorcycle after a cross-country trip in 1975 on the back of a 56 Harley-Davidson Panhead. I live in Texas, and in those days, you got the book from the Department of Public Safety (DPS), got a learners permit, learned to ride without much information, and took the test to ride solo. That was the plan, but I made it only as far as the “learner’s permit” part and spent the next 27 years dreaming every time I passed a motorcyclist on a road trip that someday I would be out there, too.
There is something that riding solo completes in me. I love having my husband next to me while we tour. My favorite rides are through southern Utah. I believe there are “mountain people,” “beach people,” and “city people,” and I am part of the “rock people.” Utah is my heritage, and riding there I feel connected to my ancestors who made the grueling trip pulling handcarts to settle Salt Lake City. I feel the souls of the women that kept going, mile after torturing mile, determined to build their families, farms, churches and cities in peace.
In 2008, my husband bought a brand-new Honda VTX 1800—it was stout and built for the long road. A few weeks later, we were riding when I told him how much I liked his new bike, and he made the mistake of telling me there was another one just like it on the showroom floor. When you both ride, you buy two of everything. And what a great idea—twin “twins”! The first time I rode his 1800 was the night before we went to pick up mine. It was cold out, but I felt like that bike was singing to me.
Our bikes are evolving—his has hard bags, a new fairing, a bigger seat. My bike remains a solo seat, but it too is bagged out, chromed out and ready to go.