I had a motorcycle exactly like the one pictured below back in 1977 or ’78. Even better, I was once as slender as the young woman on this DT 175 Yamaha.
Now nearly 38 years, two kids, and probably 50 pounds later I can look back on those days with great fondness, at the time though life felt very complicated.
Studly and I were learning how to be married. We were just kids, really, and pretty selfish. I was unwilling to learn the domestic arts. Studly felt like I should be able to do everything his mom did, and smile in the process.
I was ready to enjoy freedom from parental control, while Studly, raised in a very male-dominant household thought it was his duty to provide me with structure. That did not sit well with me.
We butted heads. Often. But we also had a lot going for us, not the least of which were our respective senses of humor and the commitment to making this very young marriage work. There were a lot of folks who didn’t think we’d make it, so of course we had to prove them wrong.
Not long after we married Studly went to Ronnie’s Yamaha in Dumas, Texas, and bought me a little yellow scooter called a Chappy. I rode that little scooter all over town and gained some much needed self-confidence.
After I proved I could stay up on two wheels Studly came home with a DT 175 like the one pictured above. I loved that bike. We took it to the Canadian River, just north of Amarillo, almost every weekend, and while David took on the big challenges I learned how to ride in deep sand (go fast!) and shallow water (go slow!) and on rock strewn trails (pick a line and give the bike its head!). I even ran over a couple of snakes and a good friend (sorry Patricia!)
After our kids came along I stopped riding. It just didn’t seem to be a motherly thing to do. Back then I was pretty bound by what others thought of me. Dammit. Oh, to be young again and to know what I know now!
Once our youngest graduated high school I took up riding again and wondered why on earth I hadn’t been on a bike for 18 years. There is something about having one’s own motorcycle that is both grounding and freeing, especially for a woman.
Even though I have a mega scooter now, I’d like to find an old “foo foo” bike like the DT. It wasn’t outstanding at any one aspect of riding, but good at most of them. And the memories of those early days of marriage are all wrapped up in it somehow.
I guess if there’s a take away from this post it’s that no matter at what stage of life we find ourselves we should do what makes us happy and more fulfilled. To heck with what others think.