2018 / 2019 – Week 15

Hello my dears, this week, I’ve got such a special project to show you. Everybody, please meet Tinkerbell:

She is a Yamaha XV 535, also known as Virago, and apart from the fact that she is a typical „girl bike“, and the best (if not only) choice for vertically challenged people like me, it was her baby sister (the 125) that actually got me thinking about driving four years ago. When Steve announced he was thinking about getting his bike license, I was dead against it. Those supersports bikes he was into then just frightened the youknowwhat out of me. He tried to help me overcome my fear by explaining the physics behind two-wheel driving, and taking me to a shop to see bikes „in person“, in the hope I’d realize they weren’t as big and frightening as I thought. (No, it didn’t work. Not then.) Somewhere in line was this nice kind of cosy looking black little thing, the only bike in the entire shop that didn’t look terrifying, and the only one I suddenly felt this urge to sit on. From that day on, I knew that if – IF – I ever was going to drive a bike, it would be a Virago.

And now I’ve found her. Or rather, Steve found her. I didn’t really expect to get a bike so soon because we had already stretched our budget quite a bit, with buying Lilly, and Steve getting his license, not to mention all the equipment we needed. I had been prepared to wait until next year, or even the year after, but as luck would have it, there she was, a lovely 1993 Virago with not too many miles on her clock, and since she needed some love and repairing, we got her dirt cheap. I won’t bore you with details, let’s just say there was some technical stuff that Steve took care of while I concentrated on the style stuff. When we got her, she had this dull dark maroon-ish colour, so I decided to give her a paint job. To prepare for that, I hosed her down and cleaned her – and guess what, once the dust of years of neglect was washed off, we discovered her true colour is this beautiful burgundy. I’m going to leave it at that, it’s one of my favourite colours anyway. I polished her chrome parts (not done yet, there’s still some work and effort to put in), and chose a new tail light for her. She is also going to get new indicators and different mirrors, I just haven’t found the right ones yet.

 

So this is us, Tinkerbell and me, after our very first driving lesson. Well, not exactly a „driving“ lesson, though – it was more of a „slowly release the clutch and get rolling, and try to keep my balance, and Steve, please, stay close to me, I’m afraid I’m going to topple over, this is all so overwhelming, hey, look, two metres and I’m quite fine, how am I going to stop this thing, where’s the brake, heeeeeellllllpppppppp!“ lesson – but it sure was fun, and I can’t wait to try again.

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