Women and Motorcycles- Peanut

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Peanut  kicks off our Women and Motorcycles series. This Photo series is aimed at celebrating women who are defying the odds by riding motorcycles prior to the forthcoming International Women Riders Day in May 5. When asked to describe herself, Peanut says she is an 18 year old queen with 24 years of life experience. A mother of two adorable princes, who are 16 years and 12 years respectively, she spends her weekdays working in Eldama Technologies LTD, kenya’s tier 1 cloud service provider. But beneath that helmet is a lady with a myriad of vibes. She is sassy, assertive and unapologetic when it comes to speaking her mind. She carries with her a ball of hype wherever she is and her presence is one to lighten up your mood.  She shares her beautiful riding experience with us:

When did you start riding and what motivated you to take up riding ?

I learnt how to ride in back in 2015 December but began to actively ride in June 2016. I always loved motorcycles from the very beginning. I would sit and watch movies where ladies were riding a motorcycle. I thought they looked all macho in their leather attire and stiletto boots but the best part is when they would take off their helmets and shake their hair (that hair going wild still excites me to date)

 

Did you have to go through formal training? How was the training experience ?

Yes, I went through professional training at InkedBiker Rider Training and the experience is a story in itself. I actually learnt how to ride on the bike I currently own. I still find it interesting that I bought my bike before actually learning how to ride. I had it parked for six months prior to my training. I was very anxious during my training and I remember being “punished” by the head trainer, Malibu for my silly mistakes.

 

Is riding part of your daily commute or more of a recreational activity?

Well, it is pretty much a mix of both.

How has it been for you as a female rider?

As much as it was initially considered as a male dominated area more and more women are coming out to embrace the peace that comes with the wind on two wheels. However, there have been a number of challenges that have been thrown my way one of them being my height. I am yet to find a bike that I can sit on without having to tip toe and consequently I have been prone to toppling over in situations where utmost balance is required.  Most bikes are heavy and this makes it difficult to maneuver for someone with a petite body frame like mine.  

 

I have also had to constantly prove to the society that I also belong on the motorcycle.  “Whose daughter are you?” This is a question my mother keeps asking whenever she spots me on my motorcycle. 
 
I may not do what other people do on motorcycles, but just being able to ride my own motorcycle is one of my key achievements and no longer a dream for me.
Another challenge I face as a female rider is managing what I carry. It is a woman’s weakness to always carry unnecessary or excessive “accessories” in her bags. I am slowly learning how to pack minimal things and how to carefully pack stuff while taking trips on the bike.
 
While commuting I find Matatus and Boda bodas a huge  menace. They tend to make me feel unsafe within my own space, even when I know I am on the correct lane position. You can easily find yourself pulling foolish moves when they are around you.
 
The mechanical aspect of motorcycles is a major challenge. Honestly, I think I would be in big trouble if my bike stalls or gets a flat tire. I am unable to save myself in such a situation but grateful that I have a few contacts on speed dial for such “emergencies”.
 What do you think are some misconceptions associated with female riders?

One misconception that personally gets to me and that I have to deal with on a daily basis is being assumed to be a guy while riding. I am not a dude, not a bro, bruh, buda or brathe, I AM FEMALE! Just because I ride doesn’t automatically make me a guy and I don’t feel that I have to prove it to anyone.

 

 

There is also the assumption that men ride better than women. I know ladies out there who ride better than guys and are even more careful on the road. Some women can also pretty much outrun the guys on off-road trails too.
 
It never goes without saying that most people out there regard riders as people who don’t love themselves and that is why they are risking it by riding. The real deal is that I love myself so much and that is why I decided to be myself as a free spirit and do me. In as much as riders are regarded as the bike’s body, I can never be prouder to be on this marvelous machine. So do me a favour and look out for me as you drive safely.
 
I  take on these challenges fearlessly. I have also learnt to adapt especially when it comes to my height and the height of the bike. My husband played a big role as a support system. He would follow me to work and back at the beginning. Since then my confidence on the road has grown exponentially and I am continuously grateful to everyone out there who has had my back on this.
What’s your first/current and dream Bike and what did/do you love most about those bikes

I am still riding  first  bike , the Hero Karizma ZMR. My dream bike are the KTM 790 Adventure and Honda CB500X Adventure (just thinking about them gives me palpitations)!

Being a lady and one who loves adventure, the looks of these bikes are quite alluring. Both bikes look absolutely stunning and are fit to take me for tours that I am always dreaming of. I will not get into the technical specifications of the bikes because I know very little about that.

Share a notable/ memorable experience you’ve had or undertaken with your bike or generally as a female rider 

There have been many awesome experiences in 2017 and a few in 2018 but I think Kisumu ride was the best yet. I realized when you get to choose who to ride alongside the whole dynamics of the group ride changes. You tend to have epic experiences when it is with people or someone with whom you have similar riding styles and same characteristics

How has biking impacted your lifestyle / life 

My bike replaced my best friends and I hope they don’t get to read this article (grins).  I love the outdoors and I always kept wondering what will happen to me when I get to season 4 of my life. I literally got stressed thinking the older I get the more chilled and composed I must become. That I just had to stay home, and raise the boys and start to be boring even to myself . Then BAM! My neighbor (God bless her soul) came home on a motorcycle and that was the ultimate game changer.

I knew it was time for me to buy my own, which I did. From that point onwards there was no turning back.

For me riding is like a drug or  form of meditation.  It is a place where all my worldly concerns disappear and there is just a road, Babezy (name of my bike) and me . As a human and a female we are prone to the entire craze of emotions but as soon as I position myself on Babezy , everything drops off my mind. As I keep throttling I get happier and happier.

Word of advice to aspiring female riders as well as your general biking mantra 

As a lady we have the same appreciations for riding as any other rider be it female or male. We are not on our bikes to get attention.  Be you, do you, love you, don’t wait for people to acknowledge your actions, as you will never find what you are looking for in others. Be your own excellence !

In commemoration of the International Female Riders Day in May 5, Peanut will be riding to Mombasa together with her business partner and friend Nyambura. Stay tuned for our next feature!

Feel free to share 🙂

21 Replies to “Women and Motorcycles- Peanut”

  1. That’s a quite hard struggle, perseverance, morale that kept you going.
    well achieved and learned to be a model to other ladies and men out there.
    May God bless you Patie and fulfil your plans.
    See you in KTM 790.

  2. Beautiful I’m a pillion who’s learning about bikes and I can’t wait to hit the road. I feel more mortivated by your story. Ladies who love biking as a hobby should embrace this life. For the drivers i pray that they may be more careful and also respect bikes and treat it as a car. We put our effort to wear gears and reflectors for visibility.

    Thank you for sharing this with us Ce’ri

  3. The stories you have written of late have been very inspiring and challenge us to ride. Fear of matatus and road rage drivers are quickly drowning. Peanut’s story has boosted my confidence by 80%. Thank you Ceri for this inspiring story. Stay blessed as always.

    1. Thank you Elizabeth. I am glad the stories are equally inspiring as they also are to me. I will keep sharing more of such 🙂

  4. On the writing style, the combination of small paragraphs and the photos makes a very good read. Easy enough for all to follow. It actually pulls one to read to the end (Not speaking for myself. I don’t mind 200 pages with no photos.)

    Peanut’s (I am not sure the name has to do anything with her size) experiences have been captured well. Motivating and informative for those of us getting into riding.

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