May Update: Achievement Unlocked - Learn how to ride a motorcycle.

by - Sunday, May 06, 2012

Bonus Achievement: Learn how to ride a bicycle by default.

Today marks a significant event in my life. With the help of professionals, I learned how to ride a motorcycle! I thought it'd be quite a struggle because I didn't know how to ride a bike, but I made it and I'm quite proud of myself right now. :D

Let's rewind a couple of weeks back. 

Kenso saw an ad in a random website about a two-day Learn to Ride program sponsored by Suzuki Philippines, and he thought we should give it a go. We've actually been considering this for quite some time now and all we needed was the opportunity to learn - and here it is! We called in to book a schedule with them on the following weekend but the dates got moved. Finally, they called me a week ago to schedule training on the 12th and 13th, to which we agreed to attend. However come last Saturday morning they called to inform us that we're actually scheduled to train later that very day. Turns out they had some mix-up with the schedules and their customer care reps gave us the wrong dates. No biggie, though, so Kenso and I were in the LTO main branch in Diliman in less than two hours.

We started with a lecture on the main motorcycle parts, basic controls, safety gears and guidelines, and such. Then we had an exercise on the proper ways to secure the center and side stands when immobile. Then we proceeded to the proper way to bring your motorcycle back to an upright position when it falls to its side, which proved to be a challenge for teeny-tiny me. The instructors found it funny though, and they let it slide and said I could always call the boyfriend to lift the bike up whenever I fall down. :)))).

I can really do it, actually, but that is when I'm not panicking. Heh.

Anyway, the last lesson for Day 1 was to learn how to balance with the bike's engine off. They gave the ones who don't know how to ride bicycles yet (like me) more focus. And this is where I surprised myself: I know how to keep my balance! *throws confetti*

The instructors were surprised too, and as a reward they let Kenso and I go home early. I went home a little bruised and cramping in some places because I had been trying to lift a heavy bike back to its wheels the whole day, but I was quite pleased with how the lesson went overall.

We came back this morning for Day 2 of training and we started with a few warm-ups before we hopped on to the bikes - this time with the engine on. Being the nervous wreck that I am, I panicked at the slightest turns and I had to spend a few more minutes familiarizing myself with the roar of the engine and proper braking. After a short while I was able to join the others in roaming around the test track, and it was suuuch an experience. You can really see the appeal of the motorcycle when you're actually riding one. 

We also had hands-on training on the traffic rules, then after that they taught us how to do roundabout turns and made us do this figure-of-eight-thing on the road. I fell like five times while trying to do the turns, but I didn't have problems doing the figure-of-eight. Kenso was watching me from afar because he always finishes ahead of me~ :D

The last test was to wind around pylons thrice then to return to the starting point without making a mistake, and those who couldn't were to be called back for re-training some other time. This made me so nervous because I've been struggling with the turns - I eventually got it right but I wasn't confident that I'd be able to turn properly. I think I was trembling when they called me in for the final test LOL. I couldn't be any happier when I got it right on one go! Really, really surprised myself even more and I let out a heavy sigh of relief because the worst is over. Hehe!

To cap off the last day of training the instructors gave us some last points to review - things like turning in a rotunda, the meanings of some common traffic signs, and the right of way which was quite eye-opening in and of itself. I mean, if everyone in the PH just had that discipline to keep the traffic rules and etiquette in mind there'd be significantly less accidents. Some countries don't even need traffic lights because the motorists are so disciplined. We should really take their example to heart.

Me, done with training, fucking tired and ready to go to bed.
We left the LTO main office feeling light and heavy at the same time. Heavy and aching from the whole-day workout, light with happiness and relief because we learned something new. So before I finally collapse on my bed, I want to say WEEKEND WELL SPENT! We did something productive and we get even more perks from it! Why? Because Suzuki PH will issue a certificate for us so when we want to apply for a driver's license we can just present the certificates to them and they can process the license without having to test us no more! So hassle-free! Of course we still have driving lessons to cover, but we'll get there. :D

Pictures to follow, probably. And now, I sleep. Ja!
EDIT: Some pics added, lol. (01052017)

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