I knew this would be a learning experience, a new hobby and labor of love. It's like having a great new toy, but I also got it for transportation. I thoroughly believe that if I learn how to take care of Lola and keep her optimized that I'll be able to rely on her like a cowboy relies on his horse!
Obviously I'm a noob to the mechanical side of this but I'm a bit of a tech-head, so I understand how to teach myself and learn. So far it's been enjoyable with an altogether acceptable fun : problems ratio.
The great secret I've discovered is just how cost-effective it is. Replacing any individual part is dirt cheap - even the bike itself or engine is less than $100. Not to mention the low fuel costs.
And even if I didn't want to spend time getting dirty and working on the bike myself, there are plenty of pros around here that could keep me on the road for reasonable rates.
Guess it's not such a secret - I see more and more of these all the time.
And I get admiring stares and thumbs up from people all the time. The best was a white-haired Chinese lady in a car next to me at a light who just seemed mesmerized!