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I loved that bike. Made in 1942, in a very fashionable shade of khaki, huge curving leather saddle, leather rifle holster and that distinctive substance that just screams Harley Davidson. Only 750cc, but even so it was a big bastard.

I loved the roar that came when I kicked it into action, and the way it dulled to a loud, throbbing purr. I loved the way it handled - surprisingly easily for such a heavy and cumbersome bike.

I loved, really loved, the comfort of that leather saddle I mentioned. Most bikes aren't gentle on the behind, especially on long journeys. On this, I knew I could ride all the way around the world, and still not be sore.

But most of all I loved the doubletakes. The way fourteen-year-old boys would cluster admiringly around it as it was parked up around the movies. The way they'd look me up and down when I came along, black leathers clinging, coiling up my hair (which was long and blonde then) so I could contain it in the helmet. The way they would ogle, then look over my shoulder for a boyfriend. And the way they looked when the realisation dawned as I turned the key and kicked the starter. Their jaws would drop, and they would mutter in outrage "It belongs to a girl!"

Oh yes, I really loved that bike.

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