I had not gone 200 yards before I felt it; a familiar tickle in my right ear. I’ve gotten pretty good over the years at zoning this annoyance out, but for some reason this time it was particularly distracting. I pulled over to the side of the road, removed my helmet…and set whatever creepy crawler (or in this case, flyer), that had buzzed it’s way through the open shield of my helmet and into my ear, free.
Bugs. A constant companion to a motorcycle rider. We ride through hordes of bugs every time we hit the road or trail. We decorate of windscreens, headlights, helmets and jackets with their dead carcasses. And if you are like me, and like to ride with the shield of your full face helmet open, you get a few on your glasses and face as well.
And those who survive this impromptu meeting? Well, they end up crawling around in your helmet, tickling, nipping, biting and stinging, like some secret CIA torture. Normally I just ignore it and ride on, but sometimes it can be maddening. “I give! I will tell you everything you want to know! Just stop crawling in my ear!”
The worst are bees. I don’t think I have to explain why. I have been stung many times. Sometimes they get in my riding jacket. One particularly agitated bee or bees, stung me multiple times in the side before I could get him killed. Miraculously I did not crash. I’ve been stung in the head at least a half dozen times, never much fun either. As I’m being stabbed by some angry Yellow Jacket I can’t help but wonder, “Why the Hell did you fly in here if you didn’t want to stay?” Guess it was more of a home invasion than a social visit.
I can only imagine what my wife or daughters would do if they encountered a similar situation. My youngest daughter is especially afraid of bugs. I have gotten up at 4:00 am for work before, only to find her sitting on the edge of her bed waiting for me to get up to kill a bug crawling on the floor. Not waiting for a few minutes…sometimes hours…and she is 23! It’s not all that unusual for her to hunt me down to kill a crawling “monster” that has made it’s way into her room or bathroom. Pretty sure if a bug was crawling in her ear while riding down the road on a bike, she would turn the highway into a 10 car pileup trying to get it out! I guess that explains why none of the women in my house have any interest in riding.