A tendency that I have is to get on certain "kicks" or "diversions" at times, and to spend my time researching these things and imagining how different my life would be if I were to actually buy these products or become involved in these activities. These have included boats, handguns, Vespas, Vizslas, taking up rugby, taking up sailing, moving to New Orleans, etc. Most of these things eventually fizzle when my lack of funds and/or practicality gets in the way, but here is one that I have been interested in recently:
While driving back from an interview in Columbia yesterday, I was pondering the price of gas (and the absurd amount of it that my car was using) and I began to wonder if the key for solving this inefficiency in my life would be getting motorcycle. I would suspect that most people who know me would not peg me as a "motorcycle guy," however, I began to wonder if I had the right kind of motorcycle, it would be an acceptable life choice. I could visualize in my head what this motorcycle would look like, but didn't know who might actually make it. Fortunately, the internet, mother of all distractions, was able to help me track down two solid leads:
Royal Enfield Bullet 500 Military
These are made in India by a company that took over manufacturing of Enfield motorcycles, which were used by US and British troops in WWII. They are essentially based on the original versions with very few changes, except the addition of some modern conveniences.
Chang Jiang 750
These are Chinese-made motorcycles that are near identical duplications (is that redundant?) of the 1938 BMW R71 motorcycles. Those models were used in WWII by the Germans. After WWII, the Chinese bought the manufacturing equipment from the Germans, allowing the CJ 750s to be as close to the originals as possible. An exciting addition to these is how easy it is to get a model with a sidecar. Pictured is a CJ 750 painted up to be a replica of a BWM R71.
So, am I going to get a motorcycle? Doubtful, especially since I don't have any money. However, I am glad to know that newly manufactured motorcycles do exist that meet my aesthetic requirements for such a vehicle.
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