Riding a motorcycle was something I never thought of. At 5 years sober, I met a guy in the rooms of AA, and after a long motorcycle ride on the back on his bike in April 2002, I knew I had to learn how to ride. Not only had I fallen in love with him (and married him), I fell in love with riding! I took the Riders Edge course through the Harley Davidson Shop in Salt Lake, got my first bike, and began to ride. By the time the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally rolled around, I had a few hours under my belt, so off we roared on an adventure of a lifetime. At first I was scared, thinking about 500,000 bikes and me in the Black Hills of Sturgis, South Dakota, but my guy assured me I was ready.
We rode 625 miles from Park City to Sturgis, and as we got closer to Sturgis, the energy started to build. It was so exciting as more and more bikes joined us along the way.
When we arrived, the streets were lined with bikes and bikers, venders, and all sorts of people. The roar of all those bikes can be a bit overwhelming at first, but I loved the feeling and the thrill of being with that many people and being a part of the largest biker party on earth! Still, not for one minute did I forget that I’m an alcoholic in recovery. I knew that meetings were going to be a big part of our Sturgis experience, but I didn’t realize that right in the middle of it all was The Serenity Clubhouse. My guy and I dropped into a meeting to get some Serenity. You could truly feel the peace as we walked through the door. I began to relax the moment I heard them start reading “How It Works.” You see, meetings during an event like this don’t only insure that I’m not going to drink but also insure that I’m going to have an amazing time! To be connected to my people is being connected to my spirit! It is the air I breathe, it is what lights me up! It is truly one of the greatest parts of Sturgis. I found that people who go to meetings while in Sturgis often have long-term sobriety, and the meetings in Sturgis just ROCK!!
I recently attended my 13th Sturgis Rally. Best Sturgis ever! They keep getting better and better as I grow in my sobriety. I’m a daily meeting goer and when in Sturgis I don’t take a vacation from AA. We’ve met lifelong riding buddies, and we see familiar faces in the clubhouse each year. There are two meeting halls in Sturgis with meetings all day and into the night. WHAT A PARTY! Just because I gave up drinking doesn’t mean I’ve given up having fun. I truly have more fun now than I ever had in my whole drinking career. Riding all day, my husband on his bike and me on mine, through the Black Hills where the roads were made for motorcycles, eating great food, checking out all the venders, going to meetings—it’s all more fun than any one human being should be able to have. Thank God for AA, which allows me to go anywhere and have a GREAT time.
Park City UT