All That Remains

My first street bike was a 1983 Honda V45 Interceptor purchased new from my local dealer. I depleted my life savings scratching together the necessary down payment for what was to ultimately become one of life's expensive lessons.

I was 21 years old at the time, with no prior road riding experience, but fell hard for Honda's newly introduced sportbike after reading a road test in Cycle Magazine. Young and foolish, my time with the Interceptor was an action-packed five weeks. Two weeks in and I'd already dinged its tank in a tip-over while crossing a wet lawn in the dark. A week or two later I overshot a corner and flopped in the freshly plowed field beyond. Luck was looking after me; aside from scuffs in the paint, I was able to pick dirt clods out of the belly pan and ride away.

Obviously, my riding skills at the time were certainly not ready for a 750cc sportbike. I did, however, have a few friends who convinced me their abilities were up to the task. My last mistake with that first bike was allowing one such buddy to ride it. The bike ended up in a ditch and in need of serious repairs. Although my friend would be okay, my insurer deemed the wreckage a total loss. I managed to hang on to the left sidecover as a token reminder.

I wised up when I got my next bike and soon began club roadracing since track days didn't exist back then where I lived. I also thereafter had an irrefutable response for any of my peers wanting to ride my bike. Strange as it may seem, to this day unless it's work related—I've never asked to ride somebody's personal bike.

—Don Canet