Where I reside in the Land of Skies (Suffolk, UK) there’s a definite biker’s code. Learners and youths riding 50cc hairdryers are not worthy of this accolade, but big blokes with big bikes seem to share ‘the nod’. You could liken it to something along the lines of the secret Mason’s handshake, but it says to the big bloke riding the big bike that he’s joined the Big Blokes with Big Bikes Club; he’s ‘one of them’.
When himself first passed his motorbike test and hit the road he was quite pleased to receive ‘the nod’ from other big blokes with big bikes. He soon learned to nod in return, but apparently my son (also a big bloke with a big bike) told him there’s a special way of performing ‘the nod’. It’s a dip of the head to the side, not a big dip to the front. Also there’s a little lift of the left leg as a sign of thanks if you overtake a big bloke on a not so big bike who has to give way to you.
Armed with this information himself has to scan the horizon for big blokes with big bikes coming towards him, ready to dip the head slightly to the side or lift his left leg if a bigger bloke with a bigger bike is coming up behind and he has to pull over in the usually narrow country lane.
I ask himself if surely he should be focusing on the road in front, not scanning the horizon for big blokes with big bikes coming towards him on the other side of the road. He says not to worry, he’s got it sussed. He’ll give the nod, receive a nod in return, and then both of them will go merrily on their way, nod undertaken and respect shown.
With the temperatures hitting 30 degrees at the weekend, father and son donned their Kevlar trousers, Kevlar jackets, crash helmets, scarves and gloves, and like two sweating and nodding dogs, zoomed off to look at other big blokes’ bikes at a big blokes’ bike rally. Me, I wrote another chapter in my air-conditioned front room, and then nodded off.