My first bike came almost out of the blue after a couple of years of moping and desperately wanting one. To the complete surprise of my family (and myself!), I passed my national school examinations with flying colours. My grandparents must have been really impressed as by way of reward, they funded a brand new Suzuki 50! It was one of my proudest moments - I was a "real" biker at last!!! The fact that my grandparents had ordered legshields and a huge windscreen to protect me from the elements, bless 'em didn't detract at all from the thrill of ownership; despite it having the aerodynamics of a small house which soaked up most of the meagre horsepower.
Wellingborough Technical Grammar School, circa 1963/4
Three other old school mates got bikes at much the same time in the shape of a Triumph Tiger Cub, a Lambretta Scooter and an Ariel Arrow. We were the height of cool and imagined our social status on par with the bikers at the local coffee bar. In hindsight, it was a good job we couldn't see ourselves through the eyes of the bikers!
Conclusions from this period:
The Suzuki 50 was the most wonderful thing in the world and conferred god-like status (in my own mind). Regrettably, it didn't help one bit in pulling the lovely Christine Olney whom I'd worshipped from afar for years but despite this crushing disappointment; I was a happy lad having achieved mobile independence for the first time. Thank heaven no photos exist from this period, my school photo was bad enough!