Welcome to my blog, these are the ramblings and musings of an (upper) middle aged biker and if you enjoy braais, (barbeques) beers and motorbikes then hopefully you will enjoy what Janet and I do; we do lots of braais, we drink lots of beer and we tour South Africa on our motorbike, which at the moment is a BMW R1200RT. Join us, read about what we do and please leave us your comments.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Every now and then fate or kismet conspires to place an inspirational person in your path, someone who has had to overcome incredible difficulties and personal tribulations which make our minor frustrations and hassles seem incredibly trivial.
This happened to me a while back on a breakfast run out in Riebeek Casteel when I saw a rider and his lady pull in to the restaurant parking area on a Can Am Spyder, the three wheeler with two front wheels and one rear. The thing that struck me was that the rider had his left arm strapped inside his jacket and he was walking awkwardly, I mentioned in a post that he had apparently had a stroke but had adapted his machine to operate with right hand and right foot controls. To my shame I did not introduce myself to them, I should have met them and chatted before blithely putting my opinion out in this blog. That will not happen again!
A short while later Chris Hamer contacted me, happy to see their picture but wanting to set the record straight; he had been involved in a bad accident on the way back from the Swallows rally in Worcester a while back and his left arm had been paralysed when the nerves were torn, he also lost his left leg. He told me that he had been a stunt rider and a musician and after the accident had gone through a period of depression until one day he saw the Can Am spyder on a demo, he had bought it and had it modified to suit his needs and from then on no more depression.
He still plays music at the Viper lounge on a regular basis with a friend in a group called "One arm and the Bandit" and is seen all over on the Spyder, even recently on the Killarney race track;
Here you see Chris putting the machine through it's paces, either Grant Crosby-Emery and Gary Hodgson are coming up on the inside or Chris is overtaking them on the outside, it is a wonderful picture by Alana Hodgson, just look at the air under that front right wheel!
In this picture you can clearly see how Chris rides. Respect!
I subsequently met and spoke with Chris at the Viper lounge and I apologised for my incorrect assumptions, I now count him as a friend and I can only hope that should I ever be found in a similar state of trial I will act with similar courage.


Christie said...

Very nice blog dad. What a cool guy!

Anonymous said...

I have been struggling to get onto your blog- connectivity here in Zambia is very bad . I was at the Viper lounge the one day when he walked in, but did not know the story. Brave man !!
Go well

the rider said...

Hi Christie love, yes he is a cool guy, a biker through and through.

Hey Dick - good to hear from you again.

irondad said...

May you and I both be inspired to show the same spirit!

Spyder Mann said...

Thanks for the cool and kind words, my friend. I must have been born with a set of handlebars wedged up my arsecrack or something but God forbid I ever end up in a situation where I cannot continue this blast through life on the road on a "motorcycle". I love my Spyder (Charlotte) more than any other material thing. I hope I don't have to part with her one day. Unless it's to trade her in on a new one. Maybe the touring one. You think that Victory is huge... go check out the Can-Am Spyder RTS. Much love brother. I would love to have you guys (all of you) come and listen to me belt out some classic rock tunes at the Viper Lounge soon. C'mon, support your local cripple and have a tipple.

Chris (p. Chips)

Anonymous said...

Wow! Chris's story sure is inspirational! Makes the mundane daily crap that we all worry about seem petty in comparison. Way to go Chris! Keep on rockin bro!

the rider said...

Hi Chris - yes I would really enjoy your music at the Viper lounge, only problem is it's difficult for me to get down there on a weekday - it will happen soon, hopefully some Friday evening.