Freedom is the word I have used most when describing what it's like to finally be roadworthy on two wheels in Thailand. Basically it is not that difficultly to get the driving permit. When people ask what it's like, I reply: “Yeah great. It's a refreshing feeling, being able to pilot myself with so much ease after being in taxi's, buses and the subway for the last few years.” The fresh air of the great outdoors rushing over my shoulders on the way to work is enough to get the day off to a good start, a cliché I know, but fair comment.
Passing my riding test first time was a big relief. The new work, where apparently no public transport go's added extra pressure, all week in the back of my mind thinking... 'How I could keep this new job if it was impossible to get there'. Thankfully I didn't have to and here I am writing about my experience.
Undoubtedly, I have been taught by the best in Thailand, Honda Riding School is not nothing, but it's fair to say I've learned a lot more about riding by experiencing it myself over the past month on this energetic Platinum PX125. After a month covering a shade over 650 kilometers, I've ironed out my two most concerning faults. The first was forgetting the odd lifesaver check and the second, occasionally running wide on junctions, both the result of a lack in concentration – I think.
So, about the Platinum PX125 off-road motorcycle then; having absolutely nothing to compare it to doesn't really matter, as I have nothing negative to say. It looks fantastic; possible its best quality and crucial for a 125cc, as performance isn't so much of an issue in this category.
With a street/urban look, the Platinum PX125 is styled as aggressively as a 125 could be. While not scoring me many man point at the grand old age of 23, I can't help thinking that if I woke up to this off-road motorcycle on my 17th birthday, I could have possible been the happiest young man in town and the envy of all my friends.
Although I am riding what some would regard as a teenagers' steed, in some ways I feel I have bee given membership to an exclusive club. I have already had long and thorough conversations with people I would normally just say hello too; the fact that we now share a common interest in biking has opened the door to hours of chat in the pub or, so far, petrol stations and car parks. I am surprised how long I can talk for about one month's worth of riding experience.