Friday, June 24, 2011

Saying Goodbye to a Bike

I never sold my first bike.
Well, I tried to for about a week. At the time, when I bought the K1100LT, I assumed that it was the replacement for the K75. You buy a new bike, you sell the old one. Works that with cars, must work that with bikes. Someone came to test ride the bike, as he road out of the parking lot, I became sad, and realized I did not want to sell the bike.

The start of multiple bike syndrome (MBS) set in.
Pair of Beemers

Picking up the K12 in Cleveland 2005
GT Day1

When it came time to replace the K11 with the K1200GT, I felt eager to sell the K11. She sold easily on eBay. The new owner flew in from Salt Lake City.

I waved good bye and that was that.
K11 Sale

It's 6 years later, and a new kid is in town. The GS promptly replaced the GT as my everyday ride. Again, I felt it was time to sell. Onto eBay she went. But this time I felt different. Selling the GT closes out a chapter in my life, in a way that selling the K11 did not.

Final Ride
K12 Final Ride
I had not intended it to happen, but I found myself on a good bye ride with the K12. The reserve price had been met, I knew she was sold, and I knew these were the last of our 35,000 mile journey. 35,000 miles, not really that much in BMW miles. and 6 years, not all that long. But those miles carry a lot of memories. That last ride was like thumbing through a photo album...

The weather was cooperative. Mostly sun, afternoon thundershowers, hey, it's how we roll.
End of the World?

We grabbed the ADV Northern New England Tag in Northfield, MA.
Northern New England TOR

We've grabbed a lot of tags over the years, NH, MA and VT. Freezing cold weather, baking sun, pouring rain.

A memorable November Brucing (Brucing: going through all the work and getting none of the credit because someone beat you too it)
Portsmouth Evening

I think she's going to a home where she'll be more pampered. Perhaps some TLC. If you're in Everett, WA, give her a wave for me.

We had a good ride. GAIL will be moving on to the GS.
Gone to the beach


Guido said...

Love this article. I can sooooo relate to that. It wasn't always hard for me to let go of a motorcycle, but it was very hard with some - but I could never afford to keep the old one. Best wishes to the K and may she go to good hands!

Roger said...

Nice post, I still regret selling my first daytonna, I am not sure why, just do. I felt a very emotional connection.

redlegsrides said...

very nice Gail.

I miss my R1150RT, Maria, sometimes....but she just wasn't getting a lot of miles once Brigitta came along...and then, the Ural and so on....

dead_elvis said...

I never sold my first bike (78 Suzuki GS550), either - it burned up while being transported back to me in Vermont, from California (months after a temporary move west that took place via the Suzuki as my sole transportation). I'm not sure I'd have the same nostalgia for it had that not happened, but any time I see a GS550 of similar vintage for sale, I have to take a look.

Bluekat said...

I've sold my first two bikes and it was okay, but I can't imagine selling Sam. Even when it's time...I just can't picture it. Maybe when that time rolls around I feel different.

Nice post, very much enjoyed reading it. :)

Anonymous said...

Machinery, with personality.
Motorcycles are just that however to each one we've been held caaptive by memories.
My first BMW was with a sidecar an early slash 7 which had an altercation with a streetcar one damp and stormy night in Toronto. It was then my only form of transport. Released from hospital went shopping and purchased a used hOnda Goldwing as it was shaft drive, big enough for me and comfortable. The then BMW offerings in 1980 were not. That bike I had two years before acquiring a new Honda Interstate in 1981 which I retained until two years ago when my ill health forced its sale. The Goldwing had endured two trips to Europe, a Unit sidecar, and a trailer in its long life and when sold had a variety of maladies including well over half a million miles. I regret now not having some form of bike yet I look at my own situation of declining health and know for now it is the better choice. One of these days will be back on a BMW hopefully with sidecar. The new Goldwings are too gaudy and loaded with useless farkles. I rode for the enjoyment of the ride and the people asurrounding same, not for the toys on the machine. If I want toys have a 13 year old Honda Civic, which may well be replaced with something newer this fall.

irondad said...

Know exactly how you feel. Sold my trusty ST1100 when I bought Elvira. I bought the ST new and put 163,000 miles on it. That's a lot of bonding. It was hard to let go but certainly time.

Speaking of time, the passage of the aforementioned item has dulled the ache quite nicely.

Craig said...

I love reading your blog and I am in fact in Everett, WA so if my F650GS ever passes your old friend we will indeed wave. said...

Takes me ages to get rid of cars, and I can't even begin to wrestle with the notion of selling my Suzuki.

This is a great blog by the way. I'm a motojournalist myself, check my site out at and let me know if you'd be interested in a link exchange.