Monday, June 4, 2007


I made a financial move today concerning motorcycles that was and is still very painful. I traded Big Red, my 2001 Harley Davidson Road King, in on a new Harley Davidson Road Glide. What should be a joyous, happy and thrilling experience has turned out to be a depressing and sad state of affairs. Big Red has carried me on endless roads reliably since I purchased her in 2001. She cost me $17,500 then. By the end of 2002 I had over $34,000 total in her chrome and engine as add on equipment. The machine has class and she has a nostalgic appearance of yesteryear. She has been maintained and kept in a flawless condition. I was and am proud of her. When she was parked on the street or along the road; she represented my personality. She represented everything I am. Who I am. She has heart and soul. She has character. She exuded excitement and the promise of adventure. She delivered relaxation, thrills and new experiences each and every time I took her out for a run. She always brought me back dependably. She asked for nothing. Always there for me. Always ready. She has 70,000 miles on her speedometer now and far from being worn out. But things have been needing attention and Harley parts and accessories are costly. If I were ever going to upgrade it would have to be now or I would have to keep her until she turned to dust, as no one would want to buy a motorcycle with 100,000 miles on it. I could have opted for another Road King but I don't have the finances anymore to secure the chrome and additional parts I would need to personalize it. It would be just a Road King. After having Big Red, just another Road King would not do. So my replacement machine would be purchased more for utility reasons and practicality rather than for nostalgic romantic reasons. Looks will be a secondary concern. Function will be primary concern. The 2007 Harley Road Glide is in reality a Road King with a frame mounted fairing. It is a solid machine less affected by side winds and severe turbulence. It does have a radio that I care little about. The cruise control will come in handy as I am developing arthritis in my right wrist. Not bad though. But the biggest reason I traded for this bike is the fact that my price is right. I work for Harley and I get a great break on the bikes. The difference money was absolutely right. I found I could buy a new bike with all the up to date technology for the cost of repairs and preventative maintenance on Big Red. It is a decision based around money only. There is no comparison between the two machines. Big Red is a gorgeous Harley Davidson. The new Road Glide is just a bike; at least at this point. Maybe when it earns my respect through reliable performance I'll grow closer to it. But right now its just a bike. And it will be the last motorcycle I will ever own in my life. I am sure of that. And I am sure I selected the correct model. It is not a particularly pretty bike. It borders on ugly. I have already been told it is ugly by someone close to me. But I know it will get the job done. There is just enough chrome to separate it from average motorcycle. Nothing out of the ordinary. Big Red made me feel great when I sat in the saddle. I could look down and see total chrome and Red. She is beautiful. She can not be replaced. She was and is one of a kind. She was and remains special. She is in my blood. Something else really worries me. If I feel this way about an inanimate object; how will I feel when Douglas begins to decline with age and eventually passes from my life? With all that being said you can compare the two machines yourself. They are below: