Why had I chosen the night ferry?
So I could get enough sleep for the second part of my long trip.
I was tired and fell asleep the minute I lay down, even though my whole body was aching and tense. I woke up half an hour later. An alarm had went off on some car on the deck right underneath my cabin. Somehow I managed to go back to sleep, only to be woken up again around 4 am. More alarm!
I cursed cars, engineers and ferry companies alike and went back to sleep. The Intruder has no alarm system, no need to be alarmed.
There were about 12 bikes on the ferry. All racers. A small English group who did not look left or right never mind greet and a Manx group talking races. We were all crammed together in a line, bikes secured with the straps provided. Considering the wobbly sidestand and my fear of my bike falling over I had strapped her tight, real tight. So tight, I had to muster all my strength and I still couldn’t get that bl**y thing off. The lock had jammed.
I turned round and said: “Hey guys, can one of you give me a hand?”
They were at it with the speed of light, started pulling and poking and cursing but they would rather have lost a few fingers than admit failure. It took some time but they managed to get my Intruder free. I thanked them and looked into two big grins. My need for help had made them happy.
I had not liked to ask. A matter of pride I guess. But staying behind, strapped tight to the ferry, wouldn’t have looked much cooler, would it?
But still I felt more “girlie” than I was happy with.
The rest of the long journey was smooth and uneventful. I took several breaks for petrol, coffee and toilets and arrived early and with a sore bum at my final destination.
Soaking in the bath I pondered why I had found it so difficult to ask for help.
Does independence mean, you have to manage everything yourself?
Does emancipation mean you have to manage without men completely?
I doubt both.
Real independence and emancipation leaves freedom to ask for support.
I would never hesitate to help somebody who asked me for help. Maybe it is because male bikers never do ask female riders for assistance, that it felt so strange and uncomfortable when I had to. Which it shouldn’t, actually.
Men and women on bikes do the same things but they are not the same.
Or to say it with George Orwell…
All bikers are equal but some bikers are more equal than others.