Yes, I know. I don’t look like your typical rider. But I ride, and I love it…
My journey went a little something like this.
I’ve always wanted to learn. So, one random day in March of 2016 I went to the Services Ontario Drive Test Centre and took the M1 test and passed! Mind you, it was during my lunch break, so I had to wait until after work before I was able to sign up for a course to learn how to ride and get my M2.
[No, I didn’t sign up with a friend. This was a solo mission. There was no motive other than “I’ve always wanted to learn how to ride.”
The few weekends that followed went a little something like this:
Theory course which was essentially an in-class course where you’d learn about proper tire tracks, gear, what to expect during the practical training sessions, etc.
Bought a bike! YUP! I bought a bike BEFORE I sat on one by myself. Hello 2015 Honda CB300FA from North Bay, ON! Don’t worry – I had a friend test ride it and tie it to my trailer before I bought the thing, and another friend helped me park it in my garage! LOL.
Time for the “Practical Training”… Which was simply EUPHORIC! Imagine walking to a parking lot where they had all these bikes lined up for you to use to learn on… And then use it during your M2 test. From sports bikes to cruisers and dirtbikes, students were able to test and try them all.
Funny note: I remember telling the class that I HAVE to pass because I already bought a bike! The instructor was a little shocked, but I think mostly proud, haha. Tried a variety of bikes, but because of my size, most of them had me swinging my legs in the air. In the end, the 125cc red sports bike suited me best. Luckily they had a bunch there because I dropped it so many times. The co-instructors got me out of a couple of pickling situations.
And YUP, I [still] passed! Thank goodness your learning experience doesn’t count towards your actual exam… So, just figure it out beforehand, and you’ll be fine.
I would highly recommend signing up for a course if you never sat or rode a bike by yourself. I used the Riders Training Institute in Toronto.
For me, what was great is that you left the course with a few new friends, and a newfound confidence that I think ignited only when you dropped the bike a few times. Little fear. Lots of adrenaline. Tons of learning. And over the moon excited that I conquered and gained such a “cool” skill.
The way I’ve always seen it was, why not learn how to ride a bike? Sure. It may be scary at first [as with most things you have no idea about], but if you’re going to want to go to parts of the world where cars aren’t as accessible – wouldn’t you want this skill in your back pocket?
Here’s a little fun video of us picking up my bike from my cousin’s place. Watch episode 5 of my Vlog here. If it made you smile, please like and subscribe! It helps with the YouTube algorithm. 🙂