The Ride of my Life is a work of pure fiction. As a now almost ex-biker, there are many journeys I will never make in real life. But there is nothing to stop me from sending a fictional alter ego off on an adventure.
The thing that came as a surprise to me about touring by yourself, is the chance to leave your old self at home and become someone else for the journey. Perhaps even several people, if the journey is long enough. Each day you can try out a new backstory with the people you meet. Explore another life you could have lived. The danger of course, is that on a popular route you may run into someone you last saw two hundred miles ago. But if you told him you were a surgeon and today, you are a tree surgeon, he’ll probably put the mistake down to his hearing. There is a transcendent quality about biking. You are in the moment and then you are gone.
I wanted to write a story about a guy who is about to give all that up. He is on his testimonial ride, wondering how to make it memorable. When James meets warring spouses Sheila and Richard, common sense tells him to keep out of their problems; but he is instinctively drawn to Sheila, and on this journey, James is a man who does not ignore his instincts. He is both frightened and excited about where they will take him. He feels more alive than he has for years and his conscience becomes a casualty.
At the end, James is full of conflicting regrets. Regret that it happened and regret that it ended. He has to confess to a trusted friend before he can resume the life he escaped for a short, insane time.