On Saturday, I picked up my new toy.
First thing Monday morning, I finally got around to
rolling it off the trailer, and firing it up for my maiden voyage.
Once I checked things over, and she fired right up, I climbed up on her
and took a look at the trail ahead of me. "No problem" I thought. I knew the brakes
With the throttle set slightly above half, (more like 3/4) I put it in gear, and let out
the clutch. OH Boy......
This is where I 1st, screwed up. I didn't know the tranny shift pattern, and I just
so happened to pick 3rd gear. Oh Boy.... I think the specs say 6 mph.
Within half a second, I knew this was going to be a memorable experience, OH Boy....
I was heading down hill, in a "S" bend...
Before I could recall how low my IQ was, I was sweating bullets....
My first thought, was push in the clutch, but then it occurred to me, that I'd only
pick up speed, as I was already going downhill. (damn you newton) So I didn't.
While trying to think about how to stop my ride, I was also learning how to tiller steer.
I was only about 5 seconds into the ride.
Next thought I had, (besides how I love my wife) was to give it some brakes.
Well, this was my 2nd screw up. I knew the seat was about 6" too far forward, and
that getting my feet up onto the brake pedals, would be like a fat man doing aerobics.
I knew this back before I tried to check my IQ.
The human body instinctively tries to brace itself against something, when it tries to
do things, that only an Olympic gymnast should attempt. Guess what. There's no
fender there under the left elbow to lean against. I remember briefly looking at the tire
showing me it's teeth, as I pulled myself back upright, using my right hand, which was
firmly giving the steering tiller a death grip. Well, that changed
my trajectory..... Oh Boy.... back to the learning curve.
Now I was in a speed wobble, and I couldn't get my feet on the brakes.
Time to focus on the steering job at hand, I thought.
Thank god I had that thought, because, no
sooner than I could scream out my IQ.......FOUR..., I was into the ruts from last
weeks heavy rains. I held on to that tiller, and got myself straightened out, just
as I made it to the bottom of the hill. Suddenly, my IQ kicked in, and I reached
down for the throttle, and set her back to Idle. Whew.........
After that, it was a lot more fun. I found first gear, and enjoyed the rest of the ride.
What would I do differently next time?
I'd unload it, facing in the other direction. There's about an acre of flat land there
I could've practised on. Duh......