Lying on my back with my foot pinned under the seat of my bike, it is surprising how much the view through the small window of the helmet resembles a movie screen. The fluffy clouds floated along the deep blue backdrop. The leaves on the trees fluttering in the snippets of breezes passing by. I could even hear a few happily chirping birds.
That little viewport prevented me from seeing my position in this world. I couldn't see that my bike was laying on the ground. A most unnatural position for a "cruiser." Thankfully I couldn't see my husbands frantic rush to get off his bike and rush towards me. I could only imagine my knight in matte mesh armor standing up and throwing a leg over his steed. Unmindful of actually killing the engine, putting it in neutral or putting the kickstand down, it would continue on down the road without him. Of course, I didn't see or think any of this until later. I was just watching the clouds roll by and wondering where it went wrong.
My left leg was free. No troubles there. A twitch of my right leg told me I hadn't gotten off that easily. It was under the bike somewhere. But I wasn't feeling any pain. That must be a good sign, right?
Oilburner did almost forget to put his kickstand down with all of his concentration focused on her. This is the bad thing of couples riding together sometimes; the unaffected spouse witnessing disastrous events, and not able to do anything about it. Approaching, he saw her foot was trapped and his stomach was in his throat. The trapped leg twitched a little and suddenly she is free. She still isn't moving though. Is she OK?
Kill the downed bike and he can hear laughter on the air. He leans over her prone body, looks into the little viewport and sees mirth and merriment in her eyes. If he could have seen her mouth through the chin bar he would have seen the smile he loves surrounding by laughter.
I lay there taking stock. If the leg doesn't hurt just pull it a little and see if it comes free. Huzzah! I remained laying there with my arms flung wide and just started laughing. A disembodied helmet leaned into my movie screen, with eyes big as saucers and full of worry. The worry subsided a little and was supplanted with confusion.
For my first "get off" I couldn't have planned it any more perfectly.
I was making a left turn from a stop. Here in America that means having to go to the far lanes in the road. :) I dutifully stopped and checked traffic in both directions on my little sub-division road. I "rolled" on the throttle, did not target fixate on the road edge, and leaned into my turn.
Hmmm...that edge seems to be getting closer, not moving to my right. Lean further. I'm executing such a perfect lean, I should be dragging knee. But that edge still is in my way...
I calculate that I'm still going to be executing my perfect lean at my healthy 3 mph when I reach proper travel direction DIRECTLY in that transition between asphalt road and grass. No curbs in this neighborhood. I don't want to still be leaned over when I hit that transition. I can just imagine the bike slipping out, dumping me on the road.
As taught, I right the bike before applying the brakes. That much I did do correctly. But I seem to still be aimed at the grass. I executed my turn perfectly, how could this be? (At this beginning stage in my riding career any lean feels like knee dragging race track leans.) So obviously something went wrong.
As much as I want to panic stop, just pull in the clutch and grab a death grip on my front brake. I also don't want to go sliding across the grass that way.
I'm coming in hot at a 45 degree angle to the transition line. Luckily the grass is green, lush, level, and recently groomed. Unfortunately, it doesn't remain level very long and the beginning of a man dug drainage ditch that parallels the road is where I am headed. It's a small ditch here though, maybe a foot wide, lined with grass.
I reach the obstacle just before the ditch starts in earnest, so I only feel a minor bump. I safely, and successfully, brake to a stop on the top of the berm. I have a fraction of a second to realize that I AM ALIVE and still upright when my traitorous motorbike slips down into that 6 inch deep canyon and bucks me off to the right. I have a flicker of time to remember to roll limply like a rag doll. Most "older" people break things when they react by flinging an arm out trying to catch themselves. If I just roll with it I might not hurt anything.
This is how I end up laying on my back, taking an unexpected break, watching a moving cloud picture, arms and legs flung to the wind, laughing. This falling thing wasn't so hard.
Disclaimer: This experience occurred in June 2008. My pride wasn't wounded as I lived by the motto "Not if, but when." I knew it would happen, just not when. I couldn't have hoped for a better induction to motorbiking life. This occurred on my first bike, a 2005 Suzuki S50 (think Intruder 800). It broke a turn signal, but those things just begged to be destroyed.