Having been a long-time stalker on the bylanes and alleyways of gsxs1000.org, I think itís finally time to emerge from the shadows and embrace the warm sunlight of the gsxs fraternity!
In Jan 2017, I discovered that it's faster than a speeding bullet. The crouching tiger, hidden dragon in red and black looked lightning fast standing. And in that instant, the na'vi in me was bonded to my toruk (please excuse Avatar references
I come from India, which is a huge market for motorcycles. 17.6 million 2-wheelers were sold in India in 2017, of which 11 million were motorcycles. By comparison, the US bought 487,000 motorcycles in 2016. So as you can see, motorcycles are a part of everyday life in India (understatement!).
Let's go back, though. Rewind to 2005, when I was in my mid-20s. Having ridden all over India through my engineering and business school days on a pint-sized 110cc Kawasaki Caliber, I was ready to hang up my biking boots. Moving to the capital (New Delhi) and having begun professional life with a respectable corporate job, I thought I had matured, grown up. Then, Hero Honda (one of the largest Indian motorcycle manufacturers) launched the Karizma, a 223cc 'sportbike' that personified power and speed. And of course you could have it in red! With one test ride in March 2005, I was smitten. It was sinful, this heady cocktail of raw power and refined all-day touring comfort. I clearly remember thinking, life will never be the same again if I don't join forces with this tour-de-force of engineering excellence. Thus began the second chapter of my biking life.
Many miles later, in 2010, I had to re-visit the painful decision of retirement, and this time it was for real. It was time to part ways with my trusted steed, the Karizma. The travel pressures of a consulting job left no room for the biking pleasures of a motorcycle man. Thus, I moved on with life, traveling, working, missing (my ride).
Years passed, and my work and travels brought me to the US. As I settled down and struck roots here, I realized that the laws of physics, aging and culture were different here. In this land of the free, middle-aged professionals neednít renounce their wide-eyed boyhood dreams. Immaculate conception happened and the seed of two wheels was once again planted in the fertile embryo of my juvenile mind. This was followed by fervent research, and the application of statistical and spreadsheet tools to zero in on the Ďperfectí bike for me. A complex linear programming solver model implemented in Excel guided me irrevocably and unequivocally towards one choice: the GSXS-1000F. Thousands of Youtube videos and rideapart articles later, motorcycle maintenance classes had been taken, dealers had been contacted, deals negotiated, winter timing finalized as the best time to score a deal, and voila Ė I was at Motorcycle Mall in Belleville, NJ, gaping at the new-born brute in shining black and red armor!
That first ride home on a cold 42 F evening went from 15 miles to 45 miles in the blink of an eye. The jump from 223cc to a liter-bike turned out to be so much more than I could ever have planned for. The ride from Jersey City, NJ to Rhode Island on a blustery Jan morning was a saga of re-discovery, but that is a topic for another story, another day. I now reside in beautiful New England, pushing the limits of winter riding and reveling in the miles of back-country byways that RI, MA and CT have to offer. If I have a regret, it is that I haven't encountered a single other Gixxus in all my time here - hoping that this beginning here will put an end to that!
And friends, that is how I was born, yet again.