Friday, August 29, 2014

I wish I hadn't done that.

I wish I hadn't done that. I really wish I hadn't left my Suzuki 550 in Hawaii when I moved back to the mainland on Christmas Eve in 1986. I really loved that bike.

I remember sitting at stoplights in Hawaii gazing around and thinking I can't believe I am really here. That six months was truly a great time and I rode that Suzuki everywhere - rain or shine.  It got exciting a few times on H1 - the main drag - as since I did not wear a helmet I could hear cars racing behind me - the cops used to race on H1 all the time.  Back then they were given cash and chose their own cars - usually the muscle variety - and it was not odd to see a huge Samoan or Tongan in a black 442 or some other powerful, fast auto.

I remember taking a day off work and riding to the Norh Shore to watch the big waves at Waimea Bay the first day they hit. It seemed like half the population of Oahu was there - I stopped at Matsumotos and grabbed a giant shave ice (ice cream and beans of course)

 and parked in the parking lot at Waimea and just watched in awe as the big waves broke.

Then there were the Saturdays I rode to the beach and watched the sail planes (gliders) swooping around doing their loops, whirls and vertical climbs just like Rocket J Squirrel.

One memorable evening I road home to Waipahu from Kailua 0 I had just been at my friend Dave DeCaire's house helping celebrate his daughter's birthday.As luck would have it it began to rain.  No big deal - it rained all the time.  But this instance it did not let up - I got a break going through the tunnel but as soon as I exited on the Honolulu side  the bike started to plane.  No wheels on the ground  - I was on water.  That was exciting.  Scary.  Pick the adjective.  The rain kept up until I hit downtown - and as I headed toward Waipahu it suddenly got very cold. I was in the small valley that passes the Halava jail.  Froze my you know whats off - LOL.  But eventually I made it home safely to Hiapo street. Rick & Laurie laughed their butts off at my appearance. I probably should have taken Dave's offer and slept on hIs couch but alas - I did not.

Nothing could beat cruising Hawaii on that Suzuki but there are some great spots in Northern California I would have liked to see.  Unfortunately Lynn was dead set against it so I left thje bike parked at Rick and Laurie's place and sold it about 3 weeks after I left.  Sigh.


  1. By 1986 I was limping around with one replaced hip joint and the other rapidly getting due to be replaced too and would not have been able to join you in Hawaii. Had it been say up to 1979. I would have and I bet that the two of us would have cut quite a swathe! You were not in my orbit when I wrote this one -

  2. Nice photo Chuck, beautiful bike. I have this hilarious picture in my head as you arrive at Hiapo street. Still, you have all those wonderful memories to savor.

    Hope you have been able to settle in after the move, no boxes hidden in closets or corners.
    blessings ~ maxi

  3. I have been pillion on a tourer bike, only once and that was more than enough for me. I must have failed the test, I have not seen the owner since, though he continued to write for a couple of years.