Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Motorcycle accident

I've been riding a motorcycle for about 6 months now, and have put something on the order of 5,000 miles on my bike. It's a 1981 Honda Silverwing which has been well maintained and runs like a dream.

It all started late last summer when I met up with my sister Kat and her husband Jim down in Auburn one night really late at a casino. They had their motorcyles with them, and Kat took me for a ride on the back of hers, out on the freeway for a little while. It was the most exhilarating experience I'd had in ages, and I was instantly overwhelmed with desire to get a bike and use it rather than a car.

So I signed up for a 2 day introductory motorcycle rider's safety course, which was incredibly helpful since I'd never ridden before. I took to it like a duck to water, passed the test at the end with flying colors, thus got my motorcycle endorsement, and a month or so later I had purchased this lovely silverwing along with about $600 in safety gear including a full set of riding gear (jacket, overpants, gloves) and a nice full face helmet.

I find when I go somewhere on the bike, I feel amazingly happy when I arrive. And I feel pity for all the poor suckers who are driving along in their cars.

Today I was incredibly glad that I bought and wore all that safety gear, because I had a collision with a car at something like 25 or 30 miles per hour, and laid the bike down on it's side, and thwacked the back of my head *really* hard on the concrete road surface. I must have hit it hard because I have a couple of smallish memory losses surrounding the accident. This is extremely wierd for me because I generally have an excellent memory, and there are just these *gaps*!

Then I spent the next 6 hours or so at the emergency room of the local hospital--mostly just waiting. They did a CT scan, and cleaned out and bandaged a small puncture wound on my left leg. My leg is *incredibly* sore, and the whole left side of my body is incredibly sore. The doctor said I have a concussion, and to take it easy for at least a week.

I suspect tomorrow I'll barely be able to walk. The soreness has gradually been increasing the whole afternoon and evening.

If I hadn't been wearing that big helmet, I suspect I'd be dead, or have serious brain injury, or something like that.

My poor bike is somewhat tweaked, which is very sad because it was a nice bike.

I'm hoping the insurance situation works out in such a way that someone else pays to have my bike fixed, but I'm not totally sure that's going to happen.

Anyway, the long and the short of it is that I seem to be okay so far, for which I'm very grateful.

If any readers of this blog ride a motorcycle, please if you're not already doing it please make sure you have a good helmet and good gear and *always* wear them.


Joe said...

glad you are ok.

Moonaroo said...

Bens, I am glad that you are O.K. My husband has owned and ridden motorcycles since around 1980 and I have heard him talk about always doing the things that you described doing in your blog post. Even though you do everything to be safe, sometimes accidents just happen. Again, I am very relieved to know that you are alright.

Ben said...

holy crap. glad it wasn't worse. how did the accident happen? i almost got hit in ballard once when these people just drove right through a stop sign.

gretta at lothlorien said...

So glad you're OK, Ben. love,gj

Anonymous said...

Oh my! I'm glad you're okay, and heartily second your endorsement of safety gear. It's something my dad, whose ridden motorcycles for as long as I can remember always taught me. And, of the five people my own age who have died (far too young), three of them died in motorcycle accidents (the other two were cancer, shockingly enough). So, do be careful, and always wear a helmet, and proper riding attire. I'm so glad it helped keep you safe, Ben! Yikes.