On August 8, 2009 I gave in to my i-want-a-new-bike-itis and traded in Ethel on a left over '07 CBR1000RR I found at East Bay Motorsports in Hayward. They lowballed me on the tradein but they knocked $4K off the price so I jumped on it.
The power increase was huge. No hesitation on the throttle, just instant zoom. I could feel the potential for disaster if I did not take care. I was no longer in the comfort zone that I had been in with Ethel...and I needed to take time to get to know this powerful new beast. Mercurio - named for quicksilver - was both exciting and terrifying, and he definitely satisfied my need for speed. I could see many tickets awaiting me in my not to distant future...
I started to want to ride more and go further. I wasn't waiting for my riding friends to schedule a group ride, if they weren't riding I went by myself. I rode Mercurio everywhere. Sunny days, rainy days, cold or hot days I rode. My poor car sat neglected in the driveway gathering dust because I hardly ever drove it anywhere.
Then in early September of 2009 I heard about a rider, Donald Masters, who had gone missing in Montana on August 31st. Following the news on the internet about the search for Donald led me to a forum called st-owners.com (a group of Honda ST1100 & ST1300 sport touring enthusiasts) where several members were actively participating in the search. Eventually, I was so impressed with the community that I found there that I became a member.
I didn't matter that I had never seen or heard of an ST1100 or ST1300 before, or that I rode a CBR. They welcomed me into their group like I was one of the family. It was not long until I was attending st-owners events. The first time I saw an ST1100 I was smitten... Later when I saw an ST1300 I was in lust. By December of 2009 I realized that I had bought the wrong bike. While Mercurio was an awesome bike, if I had known about the ST's I would have never gotten him.
Oh, well, you live and you learn. I decided to make the best of it and make Mercurio be my ST until I could actually afford to get a real one. I wanted something that I could ride all and still be comfortable. I kept telling myself "one of these days"... I had figured out what I want to do when I grow up and retire: travel all over on 2 wheels. Now, how to make it happen...?