The Frady Cat

I’m a big believer in facing your fears. Generally, I subscribe to the ‘if you’re afraid of it, you should do it’ school of thought. That’s why I am on this motorcycle trip from Valencia to Heidelberg. I hadn’t been back on the motorcycle since our accident a little bit ago. I hadn’t written about it here.

We had been up in the mountains in Alicante, riding home towards the sea when we hit a nothing slick spot and the bike’s back wheel slid and we went over. We were geared up so Jeff had a bloody knee, and afterwards, I felt muscles I didn’t know I had. But the thing that freaked me out was hitting my head so hard on the pavement I didn’t know where I was. I’ve had a bunch of migraine headaches since then.

Jeff was unbothered by it. I think because he almost died in a motorcycle accident nearly 4 years ago. So our little spill was tame by comparison. The bike hadn’t fallen on us and broken our legs, so in his book we were batting 1,000. He was ready to hop up and ride again.

At that point, I had already promised Jeff I would go with him to take the bike to be shipped – that decision was made. But getting back on it took everything I had that day and I hadn’t ridden since. We’d had to buy me a new helmet and new gloves. But I was set.

2 days before we left, I broke out in hives. I didn’t sleep that night. I communicated and assumed the well planned route wouldn’t include hours of hair pin turns on cliff hanging mountain roads without a center line, uneven rutted pavement, and oncoming traffic. But it would. I was sweating when we pulled out of the garage in Benimachlet.

Yesterday, in Carcassonne, I was feeling better. The city is beautiful and we’ve seen it all. It’s a place I’ve always wanted to see with the history of the Cathars that fascinates me. And the castle that has such a storied history. (See next post)

But it’s nearly 3am and we are leaving to head down the road in the morning and I haven’t slept at all. Jeff is snoring away and I’m wide awake. I’ve got to get back on that bike in a few hours and I’m sick to my stomach.

Sitting here, I remember my first bike accident. It included an ambulance ride and I messed up my back. I had a nasty concussion that took about a month before I felt human again. It took me years to ride again. This time between accident and riding wasn’t a half hour. We had to go home and it was an hour and a half away. But I realize now that I have some residual feelings left over from it and I’m not sure how I’m going to get from here to there.

Riding on the back of Jeff’s bike has always been a challenge for me. I’m putting my safety in his hands. It’s why I’m a nervous flier. But this time, it’s more than that and I can’t put my finger on what’s bothering me. Maybe I’ll figure it out by the time we get there.

We did figure out how the gps, not only miscalculated the time to Carcassonne but also why it put us on those terrifying roads. So that shouldn’t happen again.

Generally, I’m a pretty fearless person. The one thing between me and my goal is usually just a plan. But not for this. I don’t seem to be able to put my finger on it long enough to develop one. And I’ve noticed my riding fearfulness has unnerved Jeff a bit. He counts on me to just say ‘Sure, let’s do it!’ And this time I’m just not there yet.

Next stop is Avignon. I’ll write a post of the two Cites’ combined when we get there. For now, all I have to do is breathe for 244km.