Monday, October 1, 2012

Twenty Five Years Ago

Twenty five years ago life was much simpler.  The year was 1987, I was 29 and having the time of my life racing motorcycles.  I had no computer, internet or cell phone but somehow I made it just fine.  Today it seems that I am tethered to my phone and as soon as it dings announcing a new text or email, I have to see what someone has sent. 
I was also completely healthy and, with the exception of a broken bone, I never went to the doctor ... never.  I had accumulated enough points through wins and consistent finishes that I was advancing to the next class.  Two months later, in December 1987, I had a serious crash while racing a European Qualifier.  I cracked three ribs, suffered my second concussion, broke my right collar bone at the neck and separated my right shoulder.  All healed well except for my collar bone.  It was eight months before I could ride without feeling my collar bone, the handlebars transmit jarring and impacts through your arms, I would feel nauseous from the pain.  Anyone who has had a broken bone knows the feeling of bumping it as the bone is knitting itself back together, you get a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach ... as well as the pain. 
I was also not familiar with RA despite already having OA in my knees from football and racing.  I had always planned on going back to racing in the senior class after our daughter got older, but never saw RA entering the picture ... we never do.  I hold no grudge or remorse now, just enjoy a much tamer style of dirt riding.  At least I'm still able to ride most days.
What brought this post on was a visit from Mike Smith a couple of weeks ago.  We sat out on the patio and talked about everything from family and adventure riding to camping trips and old racing memories.  Man, some of the stuff we did ... we could fill a blog up from riding stories.  He also brought some old photos with him, so here is a glimpse of days gone by.  

Me, healthy, at age 29
Mike Smith 1986
Start at an Arkansas Hare Scrambles event in 87.  Mike Smith is the rider at the left and I am 3rd from the left in red riding pants.  Once again Mike and get a good start.
Me in 1987 racing at Tulsa
Arkansas Hare Scrambles event 1986.  Mike and I are battling for the lead at the left side of the photo.
Me racing at an enduro, possibly Stillwater, aboard a Husky 430.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

It was a different life without the internet and cell phones for sure. Never had a broken bone, hope I don't. RA definitely alters your plans, love the old photos. Keep riding.

mary said...

You look like a baby in that picture. Where does the time go? I did my screw you RA and Chiari too ride this year. A cortisone shot and some pred quieted the knees and I had a great time. Every ride is a gift.

Terry said...

Anon, it was indeed. Broken bones are over rated, I've had enough for a few people. Thanks and I will!

Mary, haha ... the first 35 years of my life I looked younger than I was, now I look older than I am. Life is cruel! Glad to hear you got your screw you" ride in, the words shot and knees don't belong in the same sentence. You're right, every ride is a gift and I don't take any of them for granted any more.

Deb aka AbcsOfra said...

Ahhhh the hey days :-) If only...but I hate thinking like that. Loved the photos! And keep on riding. Sure we may not do the things we loved exactly like we use to but the important thing is...we keep on keeping on.

Terry said...

Deb, I typically don't look back on the past but I made an exception. I loved racing and wished I could still do it ... oh well, that's enough living in the past for now. You're so right, we keep on keeping on. It's what keeps us alive inside.