Every year motorcyclists have to go through the annual task of registration renewal and safety inspection. I have two options for getting the scooters and Rebel inspected. One is a fifty mile round trip to Walton, the other a scant thirty-two mile jaunt to Hancock. As much as I like the guys at Klinger Kawasaki in Walton I prefer the one on one relationship I have with Paul at Vetrone's in Hancock. Paul is an old time Harley guy who started out on a Honda. He treats my Chinese scooters like any other bike without a doubting look or comments I'd rather not hear. Last week I took the big scooter first as it was a cold day and the that scooter is better in chilly temperatures. In the space of an hour I rode to Paul's, got the bike inspected and returned home. A lovely trip despite the cool temperatures and another reminder of why I like to ride that scooter. Smooth, quiet and comfortable.
Today was the Rebel's turn and despite my cool feelings about the bike it reminded me why motorcycles have such appeal. The Honda makes all the right engine noises out where you can hear them. It delivers vibrations that remind you that you're on a machine made from steel tubes with an engine running right under you. The best part is the way the bike accelerates and snaps through corners like a thoroughbred. In simple terms the Rebel is the same size engine-wise as the big scooter but weighs seventy pounds less and has about five more horsepower. It accelerates to sixty-five mph easily and holds that speed under most conditions. It had me longing for another 1000cc Kawasaki but age and practicality holds that as a dream that won't happen anytime soon.
Now I have numerous maintenance tasks to perform on all four bikes in the coming months. Oil changes, scooter belt replacements and valve adjustments await. I'll fill you in on all of them when they happen.