I had a really shitty last week.
It actually started a few weeks ago, when a persistent fuel leak kept the Ducati in the garage. I must have torn apart the fuel tank and lines seven times in 10 days. It was getting frustrating: "oh, it's the fuel pump o-ring..it's not vitton so it came off"; "oh no, we didn't fit it properly"; "bah, it seems that wasn't it, it was the quick disconnect plug"; "or was it the hose?", etc.
Finally, by sunday morning (the 6th) I finally figured out it was the feed hose from the tank; it wasn't sealing properly at the quick disconnect's end. We put on a stronger brace, scrapping the one fitted as it did not apply enough pressure, it seemed.
Great, that fixed it! Rode home at 22hrs on sunday, tired, ready to go to sleep and ride to work the next day, when suddenly, three blocks from my house the feed hose split and started spraying fuel on my left foot, controls, swingarm, engine...bah, you get the picture
23hrs we tow the bike back to my father's garage.
Monday afternoon, changed the whole line, and it runs fine now. Tuesday, loving the bike once again.
But then, on wednesday I'm riding to work. Stop behind a car at a yield sign. He suddenly starts creeping back, slowly until he touches my front wheel. I'm using the horn but he doesn't seem to mind, it almost seems like he's doing it on purpose. I get extremely pissed and bang on the tail of his car with my fist "move forward, MF!". Traffic starts moving, I pass him but have cars in front, so I see him through my mirror driving stupidly fast to approach me...then he kind of passes me almost touching my back wheel. That's it, I decided to turn at the next street and avoid this idiot. Do so successfully, but...you know the feeling.
Thursday mid day, I'm riding towards my father's to have lunch. I'm riding quickly, and I'm approaching a crossing street situation in which I have the right of way. However, I see this car driving towards the yield sign faster than normal, so I start to slow down. I study the car's behaviour, and then, just as I thought, the woman doesn't stop to let me pass, she actually blocks the street I'm riding, in one of the most clumsy reactions I've seen: she not only sees me, but she STARES AT ME, and then almost like confusing the pedals, instead of making her stop, this makes her step on the gas and block the road. Nice going...
At that moment, I brake harder than normal, but still I'm thankful I saw this coming, and had already slowed down enough.
However, I'm pissed off. She looks at me again, stopped next to her window, and gets quickly on the gas, like she's escaping me. Now, some context: Apart from the bike being down the last few weeks, I've had some rough time at work. Things have been moving around a lot, and this has me pretty tired and frustrated lately. I'm honestly under a lot of stress, and it sucks. It certainly doesn't excuse my attitude, it's just to give some context. I shouldn't have done what comes next (nor, punching the car in the previous story; I'm not proud of acting like that).
I turn the bike around and launch off to catch the lady. She has to stop on the next block, so I quickly arrive at her window. She avoids looking at me, while I scream "look at me!!! Look at me, RIGHT NOW!!!". I smack her window with the back of my hand, and then she lowers it and starts apologizing. "you saw me and kept going anyway, are you trying to kill someone!?", I say. She apologizes and moves away.
I would say "I'm not a violent person", but you can really surprise yourself in these situations.
I'm not proud of it. I've told the story and some people -even non riders- tell me "well, she almost killed you, I bet she doesn't skip a sign like that again". Perhaps, but I felt like a criminal at that point, smacking her window and screaming at her like that. Not good.
I promise myself not to get into any fights or anything like this: if someone cuts me off or something, I'll handle the situation, stop for a while to cool off, and ride on.
BUT, on Friday afternoon I get out of work, and I stop at a sign. Suddenly, I see this old, beautiful Mercedez approaching me from behind, and I notice 1) the driver is NOT looking forward, but rather looking for cars coming from another street, while 2) he's getting closer to me, at a rate of speed that doesn't look normal at all. I honk and move forward a little, and by coincidence he starts slowing down, because he doesn't really stop until he actually pushes my back wheel with his car, and THEN he sees me for the first time!!!
It was a slight push, but enough to disrupt my balance a little. I step down and balance again, get off the bike and approach him. I'm being honest here, I was mad. But to me this was technically a vehicle colision. Even at that speed, if this was between two cars, I would be getting out of the car to check for any damage, and exchange insurance info if necessary. More so if a BIKE is involved!!
Not this guy. He seems to be surprised by the fact I'm walking to his car even more than how surprised he was that there was a bloody red bike in front of his damn car.
"what's up, man? Didn't you see me??"
-"no, but it's your fault! You turned in too fast, I didn't even catch you".
End of patience:
"what the fuck!? I was stopped at the sign, in front of you, asshole, and you didn't see me!? Learn how to drive, idiot, you were pushing my bike!!!!"
-"Ah man, don't get angry, don't worry about it. Besides, it wasn't my intention"
"You bloody imbecile, I'm SURE it isn't your intention to go running over people on friday afternoon!".
(I'm trying to catch the cursing in english...imbecile is more common here, I guess)
Anyway, I ride off after that. What a shitty week.
BUT, then comes sunday afternoon. I've been trying to fix my attitude, loose the stress, figure out what I'm going to do with work, etc. I feel like I'm having terrible energy, and this can only attract bad things. It's not normal to have three of these events down here; might be in a bigger city, but not in this town. I'm tired of this.
So go to the garage to change the clutch fluid (brake fluid on the clutch
) and after doing so, I push on the bike a little, from the sidestand's side, to see how the fluid level looks with the bike level to the ground. I somehow lose my balance a little, and the bike starts tipping to the opposite side. I can't believe this is happening to me. I grab it by the bars and seat and pull on it, but I'm just not standing firm, and I see the bike tilting more and more, falling to the ground in this painfully slow motion.
The front end is falling on top of the front wheel of my father's bike, until I hear a loud CRACK!
I can't believe it. To be honest, I just wanted to cry right then. This was too much. Broken turn signal? Mirror? Fairings? Pegs? I'm expecting the worst.
I manage to get it back up with the help of my father, and start anxiously inspecting for damage. But then, I couldn't believe my eyes: the only damaged piece is the windscreen, with a relatively long but insignificant crack. Bars, mirror, turn signal, fairings, peg, everything is FINE!!!!!!!
Man, after so many years, I guess there's always a first time to drop your bike in the garage. I felt so stupid, but so damn lucky at the same time.
Week is over. Crappy ending to a crappy week, but at the same time, this can also be seen as the silver lining of the week. Just like with the three "encounters" riding, I came out OK. So it can't be that bad, right?
I'm glad it's over. I'm looking forward to a better week now
Thanks for reading