Motorcycles and me

Somewhere on a desert highway
She rides a Harley-Davidson
Her long blonde hair
flyin’ in the wind
She’s been runnin’ half her life
The chrome and steel she rides
Collidin’ with
the very air she breathes
The air she breathes. – “Unknown legend” by Neil young

Long before I even knew this song existed and way before I laid my eyes on Steve McQueen astride his Triumph, I fell in love with ‘the ride’. I was 7 or 8 years old when I first sat on a motorbike. I still remember sitting behind my dear Uncle, my arms desperately trying to get a tighter grip round his stomach, face squashed against his back, legs hopelessly dangling but still talking! I wanted a motorcycle. The first time I was on a Thunderbird behind my Suresh Dada, legs no longer dangling, hands in the air and yes still talking – I knew I had to get me one of these!

Everyone has this urge to break away from the mundane, leave all responsibilities and explore the unknown. One could walk or run, just that a bike will get you there faster unless you have a horse. I guess more than the cool rider image associated, it is this sense of freedom, the adrenaline rush and a oneness with nature, that has so many men and women put on a helmet and just ride. Be it on a Fatboy, an Indian, a Bullet or any other, you will have the wind in your face, the sky above you, the tarmac (preferably) crunching underneath and the unexpected before you. Heady stuff!

Since talking is not a part of this thunderously silent quest, here are some pictures. I have been inspired looking at them, hopefully with Janis Joplin and Norah Jones (?) blaring behind, you would be too.

Steve McQueen aka The King of Cool

The insanely famous Triumph TR6 650 in the movie “The great escape”.

Vintage Indian Scout 1927

1940 Indian Chief

Show off in the movie “The curious case of Benjamin Button”

Indian Hill climb

BMW AG and a weathered helmet

A German on a 1937 BMW R6 ..Wow!

How can we not have an Electra glide

Yes we will still apply our mascaras and powder our noses

Sonika – one hot Mama!!

Another Machismo on the run

Bullets for an open road…

Shinya Kimura, founder of Zero Engineering on one of his babies

Original Samurai Choppers…Do I even have to say anything?

Shinya made this wonder (Junk Yard Phantom) from discarded parts using basic tools. Was featured in Travel and Living’s Biker Built off series…I think I saw him with a hammer too once

I like dirt bikes too but this ones just for the awesomeness of the photograph!

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