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After a couple of weeks of gentle "nagging", Tim relented this morning and took me for my first lesson in motorbike driving.  It proved to be a bit of a mistake...

Luckily, she chose a vacant lot that was muddied by the recent rains.  Also luckily, I wore blue jeans (which had received some giggles from Tim back at the house).  After some cursory instructions ("this make you go, this make you stop, you start in number one [gear]"), I gave the bike a bit of gas before I'd completely mastered the balancing act to keep it upright.  It leapt forward with my feet danging off the footpegs while I desparately tried to stop the thing (only succeeding in making it go faster).  Tim ran after me as I careened across the field, trying not to fall over.  There was a grassy ridge to my right that I seemed headed for.  Not knowing if there was a big drop-off on the other side, I quickly steered towards the left and rapidly closed the distance to the edge of the field (where there was a large drainage ditch).

After a few seconds (all told, the entire incident probably lasted around 10 or 20), I crashed into a muddy pool of water.  The bike dropped to the right with me more or less underneath.  I was more concerned with damaging the motorbike than myself and managed to break the glass out of the right rearview mirror.  My jeans and the right side of the bike were covered in mud and I had a bloody scrape on my right elbow along with a bit of skin scraped off of the top of my left foot (I wore sandals instead of "real" shoes).  It could have been a lot worse.

Tim came running up soon as I was extricating myself from under the bike and helped me get it back upright.  We examined the minimal damage and then she worked with me a bit more.  I did make some progress, walking the bike along with my feet on the ground while letting the engine (slowly) propel it forward.  But my heart really wasn't in it anymore as I was somewhat embarrassed and gunshy.  We'll give it a try another day.  At least we are both now laughing about my accident and are planning to go to the Honda dealership tomorrow for a replacement mirror.