Truth be told: my heart was not all aglow over the election results.
But what was more disturbing was knowing that 46.9% of eligible voters did not even bother to show up.
I mean isn't that one of the secrets for success: showing up?
Yet, while I was disturbed by the turnout, I was not surprised by it.
Traveling more than 8000 miles across 20-states illuminated the apathy: very few people had political signs posted in their yards.
As for the signs I did see, they either said Trump or Trump/Pence or Make America Great Again or something to that effect.
However, I do not wish to alienate readers, or make them think this post will be political in nature.
This post is not about any of that.
This post is about the people who do show up.
Being unemployed by choice (and having kick ass friends with open arms and open homes) provides me with quite a bit of time to research successful ventures, or to be more specific, successful motorcycle-based ventures.
Let's start with the 2013 creation of Babes Ride Out.
A couple of female motorcyclists along the West Coast get together.
And, as they put it, they started with "1 shitty flyer, 1 WordPress site, and 1 route map" and voila!
Now, with significant traction, the group continues to expand.
In 2016, Babes Ride Out East Coast was born, and more success is on its horizon: "As the % of lady attendees has risen... women are finding their space within this community and with each other. It’s incredible to watch... ."
Here's a glimpse of a video, they put together around this time last year.
Another successful enterprise: ATWYLD.
The about page on its site speaks for itself:
"Atwyld is a women’s motorcycle gear and apparel brand inspired by the void and built for the voyage. Founded by Anya Violet, Jaime Dempsey and Corinne Lan Franco; Atwyld was created to put a layer between you and the road that is both stylish and functional. Driven by a sense of freedom, independence and a bond to the road; Atwyld is not just a passenger on your journey but an integral part of your riding experience. From the mountains to the beach and the deserts to downtown Atwyld gives you the freedom to fly."
I was excited to see what this femme fatale team would create.
It reminded me of a conversation I had had with my July airbnb host in Dyersburg, Tennessee about the lack of functional motorcycle wear for women.
[Fashion came up partly because her daughter had recently graduated from SCAD (the Savannah College of Art and Design).]
Unbeknownst to me, a group was diligent at work putting together fashion-friendly AND more importantly user-friendly motorcycle gear for women.
Not going to lie, Atwyld's gear is not cheap, and frankly, I cannot afford it.
However, all their merch is made in the great United States of America; plus, it's pretty, and it's cool, and it's got Kevlar.
What's not to love?
Have you seen their marketing video?
Even the Fonz would appreciate its quiet beauty.
Two success stories dear to my motorcycle and feminist heart.
People (and more specifically women) who show up.
Until we meet again.