motorcycle gear

How Goldie 2.0 Was Born

2012_triumph_street_tripleR_totalled
2012_triumph_street_tripleR_totalled

I know, it's not pretty. But first

The Accident

First of all, I'm great. The photo above is of my bike before she crashed into a guardrail. As a result of hydraulic fluid that was spilled down the entire lane, I lowsided at approximately 40-45mph (same speed as the curve I was headed into) and the bike took most of it.

The good news is I got up without a scratch. And no, I was not stuck under the guardrail. I actually stopped right on the spotty white painted line on my stomach. As you can see, my gear took all of it (head never touched the ground). And that's why I typically wear leather, even in the summer:

(gear clockwise from top left: Racer High End Gloves (sliders work!), Revit Galactic JacketRevit Gear 2 Leather PantsSidi Vertigo Lei Boots). My head never touched the ground, so no helmet replacement needed. I did replace my gear with another Galactic jacket, Gear Pants, and this time some Alpinestars SMX-6 Boots. The only reason I went with these is because my feet are smaller than when I got these, so I needed a 36. Sadly the Vertigos are only available in 37. These actually fit me very well, so we'll see how they do. I've spent ~500 miles in them so far and they're very comfortable (wider too).

My body did walk away with bruises. Which I'm *very* happy to have, instead of broken bones, road rash or surgery. No ambulance was needed, just a quick visit to the Dr that night to make sure nothing was broken.

(bruise pics clockwise from top left: day of the accident, 3 days after, 1 week after, 1 month after)

The only real injury I sustained was a tiny fracture on the underside of my metatarsal bone. It's hardly visible on the x-ray. Here's a pic of my foot 2 weeks later:

I can't imagine what my foot would have been like had I not been wearing those Sidi Boots. Unfortunately my bike didn't have any frame sliders or engine guards, so the full weight of the bike was on my foot. Although my boots prevented my ankles or rest of my foot from being crushed, one tiny little bone under my foot suffered. It's now been almost 8 weeks since the accident and although my foot is much better than before (back to wearing cute shoes!) I still have trouble walking for awhile in hard-soled shoes. I'm guessing a few more weeks and it'll be gone for good. Wearing my new riding boots isn't a problem!

In case you're wondering about the bike at this point, Yes, the bike was totaled! Beyond totaled. But the good news is as soon as I called my local dealer to let them know my bike would be dropped off the next morning for an estimate, he told me that the exact same bike came in on consignment! Goldie 2.0 was born. Without hesitation, I knew I wanted the same bike.

Just my luck that the exact same year, make and model showed up when I needed her. Actually, this bike was in better shape than the previous version with a little over 3,000 miles on it and no dings or scratches. Whereas previous Goldie had 5,000 miles , dropped on both sides and had some imperfections.

1 Year Later, Still In Philly.

SF to PHL, the long way down: 3,624 miles later  

When I think about the last year, this image always pops in my head. We drove 3,624 miles from San Francisco and drove into Philly when it was 19 degrees out. WHAT was I doing here?

Well, turns out it was one of the best (and most difficult) decisions of my life. To get up, leave the people I love the most and the only home I've ever known to move to Philadelphia and work for Revzilla.com in our beautiful retail store.

revzilla navy yard philadelphia pennsylvania motorcycle gear best selection philly

 

It's been an interesting year and I'm thrilled to say that I'm still here. Leaving a city like San Francisco was NOT easy. And I mean, really freaking hard. It took me a couple months to decide and then another 3 months to physically relocate. I pushed off my move date as far as I could (February 1, 2014) from when I accepted the position (October 2014) and I still felt like it wasn't enough time. Although I was really sad at the prospect of leaving my family and just telling them what I was about to do, I knew instinctually that it was the right decision. I refused to end up in a job that I didn't love, and this was my opportunity to keep my dreams alive. When I was relieved at Scuderia West, I wondered where else can I possibly do that job? The only answer in my mind at that moment was Revzilla. I could work in that beautiful store with all the gear all the time. :-)

It was a weird fleeting thought but a series of events happened after that like my friend Jan, calling me to ask if I'd consider relocating to the East Coast for an incredible opportunity. And then looking on Revzilla's website out of sheer curiosity there it was, Boutique Gear Geek. Or, now formerly known as Retail Store Associate.

brammo_empulse_R

I really didn't know what to expect at first. My husband and I decided that we'd give it a try for at least 1 year, see what happens. If we're miserable or I'm miserable then we leave (and live with my parents or something because the Bay Area is so much more expensive than when we left!). But what do I have to lose? Well, I lost a lot of friends, family, and a riding community that I can't duplicate anywhere else. But all is not lost, and my family has been there to support me this entire time. Did I mention that I flew home 3 times between last June and December? So there's always that.

But for me, what has become the most important factor is the fact that I LOVE my job. And although everything else has been a hurdle like getting to know Philly and missing my people (and burritos!), they don't compare to the overall joy I have in what I do. Sometimes I try really hard to come up with excuses to move back home and just leave. But I can't seem to come up with anything! It's one of those things where you just know when it feels right. And by all accounts, this is the most 'right' I've felt in a really long time.

I would much rather have this incredible opportunity than dread getting up every morning, dread looking for a new job and figuring out what I want to do with my life.

If slinging motorcycle gear inside an incredible retail store is somewhere up your alley, Revzilla needs you. We're looking for a Retail Store Associate that loves motorcycles, gear and motorcycles and did I mention gear?  

Apply Here.

This is a full time job located in The Navy Yard in Philadelphia, PA with tons o' benefits like medical/dental/vision/401k/vacation days and free lunches every now and then.

 

What's it like to live in Philly, from this California girl

schuykill dog park When I told people we were moving to Philadelphia, it was certainly a big surprise and the immediate reply was always something along the lines of "you know it snows there, right?" 

Right. It snows in other parts of the country. I sort of knew what I was getting into. I think I had a pretty good handle on it, actually. I knew it wasn't going to be the easiest transition, but I really didn't expect it to work out this well. After making the decision to move to Philly, I was pretty scared. I couldn't really believe what I had done, and I sort of sat in denial between late September (when I decided to move) and January 15th when we finally left.

Getting in the car and actually driving away made it very real. We had a pretty good time driving across country, we saw so many cool things, ate really good food and just had fun visiting places we'd never been to. When we rolled in, it was in the middle of the Polar Vortex of all things. I knew it would be too good to be true when my friends in Philly told me the last few winters had been super dry/warm. But to be completely honest, it's not that bad. Yeah, 20 degrees is cold. It actually felt much colder when we got here. Now, I'm feeling sweaty when it's 55!

schlesingers deli philly

The food is Amazing with the exception of a good ole' Mission Burrito, of course, but otherwise we've been eating delicious foods (if you follow my Instagram, I try to snap pics of all the tasty meals) and having fun finding new places to dine.

Overall, there are many things that I really love so far about Philly and those include (but are not limited to):

  • East Coast Diners and the Food! Every diner we go to has a 10+ page menu with everything you can possibly think of. So much to choose from that I find it difficult to choose every time. And there are way more open 24 hours, which was difficult to find in SF. We've found so many cool places to eat and there are more to try every day.
  • Historical architecture and culture. Everywhere you go, there's some kind of landmark or historical event that's permanently embedded in the city streets with a signpost or plaque with a cool or crazy story. This is the birthplace of the Declaration of Independence. You can drive by Betsy Ross' house, Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell and more. I also am in love with the classic, European influenced architecture of the row houses, brownstones and the like. Almost every street is ridiculously cool and beautiful. Although I was born here (as were my brothers), I don't think I truly appreciated the history that this country was founded on. I look forward to learning more about the events that shaped our independence and how this city contributed to the final outcome.
  • philly
  • Snow. I know it sounds crazy. But I kind of Love it! I can't wait until Christmas time, well I can't wait until summer actually. But I have a feeling this city is going to be ridiculously beautiful around the holidays with trees, snowflakes and other holiday accessories.  I'm one of those who loves layering up and wearing warm sweaters and scarves, I love dressing up for winter!
  • My neighborhood, Bella Vista. We got so lucky with our apartment, it's 5-10 minutes from everything we need. It's a great mix of suburban and city living. Lots of restaurants, shopping and things to do right around the corner. I really can't wait til spring comes so I can get out and explore a bit more.
  • No Turn on Red. Most intersections here don't let you turn on Red! Love it.
  • Dogs. You can see from the pic above that Benny is having a blast at the dog park. Philly people love their dogs, and there are a ton of them everywhere. People bring them everywhere too!
  • Diversity. One would think that SF would've been a really diverse city. Sort of, but not really. Lower and middle class families (especially minorities) are fleeing like crazy. Because you can't live there for less than $100k/year. I like seeing all different colors and classes of people wherever I go. With all the universities and colleges here, there's a nice diversity of people from all over the world.

Okay, now to the not so fun parts. Which, I don't love but aren't going to drive me to run back to San Francisco! These are things that I hope to see some changes on in the next 3-5 years. Fingers crossed, but I know it's a longshot.

  • Recycling. It's such a San Francisco thing to complain about, but I miss the mandatory composting and excessive recycling that San Franciscans participate in. It reduces waste and it's sad to think about all the trash I can't recycle or compost sitting in a landfill. It also seems to fill up the streets here, especially during snow days when the trucks can't make it out that week to do pickups because of the weather. It's been so long since I've seen styrofoam, I forgot that people still use the stuff. (And it'll still be here in xx,xxx,xxx years most likely!
  • Burritos. I'm still hopeful that I will find something sufficient, but it's definitely going to take awhile.
  • No helmet laws. I'm getting used to it, but it still bugs me. I always pray that I won't see something I can't unsee when I see someone riding without one.
  • Roads. Living in the Bay Area you're spoiled with incredible roads within 15-30 minutes of you. Everything from twisty, to goaty, to dirt, to beautifully paved.  I'm excited to find a bike and start exploring, because I know there are good roads around here somewhere, I just need to figure them out! I have a feeling I'll be doing more long weekends to go riding, vs. short 4-6 hour rides which is fine with me.
  • Humidity.  I have a feeling I'll be driving to work a lot this summer. I just don't know what I can do with that. I'm used to riding in 90 degree dry heat, but I don't think I'll be a fan of humidity... Meh.

But most of all, I have to say that the best thing about being here is that working at Revzilla has been incredible. I didn't know if I really wanted to work in a store again. After my last experience, I felt like I didn't have any options left and really wasn't sure how much longer I could do this. Now that I'm here, I KNOW I want to do this. I absolutely LOVE doing this. And helping customers like Cory today, who just needed someone to talk to about gear and understand what options could be available for her to get geared up was so awesome.  It felt great knowing that I could give her information and help that she can't find anywhere else, period. She left knowing that it wasn't hopeless and that she would be able to find gear that fits her. I have to give a shout out to my awesome coworkers who really kick ass at their jobs and also love what they do. It's so nice to be surrounded by people who are actually happy working where they work.

If you don't know what it's like to love where you work and what you do for a living, then you're really missing out. Leaving was really hard and incredibly sad for me to leave my family and friends. But I just know that living here for a bit, experiencing something completely out of my comfort zone (much like riding motorcycles, imo) will make me a better person overall. I don't regret moving one bit, and highly highly recommend it at least once in your lifetime, because it's all been worth it for me, in exchange for working someplace I never could've imagined 5 years ago.... a little place called Revzilla.com, where you can find the most unique, incredible selection of premium motorcycle gear.

revzilla navy yard philadelphia pennsylvania motorcycle gear best selection

 

End of an Era

Motorcycles Scooters San francisco Scuderia West ktm aprilia brammo kymco

 

Now that I have a little more free time, I'm going to try and actually write things, on my BLOG. I guess the first thing to tell you is that it's over. 

After 6-7 years (I can't remember the exact number of years anymore), I'm no longer working at one of the best motorcycle shops in San Francisco. With new ownership came new changes and sadly, I was one of the many. I'm bummed but I'm not going to let this get in the way of what I love the most. 

Helping you (women) find motorcycle gear. 

I don't know exactly what I want to do, but I'm a firm believer that when these kinds of things happen (sudden, unexpected) that something better is coming along. I have to believe that otherwise I'll end up crying myself to sleep every night. 

If I had a boatload of cash I'd open my own shop, but that's just not possible right now. 

Stay tuned?