Motorcycle Talks

Carolyn Nickels-Cox, 34
Thai Group 34 (Kalasin and Bangkok)


…way back in April 1973 …
it was a very special time for me….

(really 1972, but “three” rhymes with “me”)


Dedicated to…

The Man, The Legend

Ted Slade


(Carolyn: front row, third from left.  Linda: front row, second from right.  Ted: back row, far right)

“Come on, Linda.  I need to get some stuff at the market.”

“I’m tired.  It’s too hot.  I don’t want to walk.”

“Okay.  We can take the motorcycle.”

“But I don’t now how to ride a motorcycle.”

“There’s nothing to it.  You just sit on the back and hold on.”

“But what if I fall off.”

“Don’t be silly.  You are not going to fall off.”

“I don’t even know how to get on one of these.”

“Here.  Let me show you.”


“Yeah, that’s it.  Just put your feet on the pegs.”

“This is crazy.”

“There.  You’ve got it!”TwoTravel


“Now, hold onto the strap or me.”

“Do you know what you’re doing?”

“Of course.”

“I don’t believe you.”

“Quiet.  You’re making me nervous.”

“You?  This is scary.”

“Just hold on while I give it some gas.”

“That was not fun.”

“It always jerks a little when you start up.”

“You’re going too fast!”

“Okay.  Is that better?”

“No! Too fast!”




“Are you okay?”

“I think so.”

“See what happens when you go too slowly. The thing just falls over!”


“Would you look at that!”kids


“Ted.  He’s running toward us.”


“Turn your head.”

“Oh, my gosh.”

“Yeah! He looks goofy running in those platform shoes.”

“He looks goofy running.”

“What the heck are you two laughing at?”



“We’ve never seen you run before.”

“Haha.  You two jokers can pick yourselves up!”

“Wait! Ted!”

“At least lift the motorcycle off us.”


“Okay, Linda.  Crawl out.”

“You’ve got grass in your hair.”

“That’s nothing. Dust yourself off.”Motorcycles

“I’m a mess.”

“It’s okay.  Now, help me get this thing upright.”

“It’s heavy.”

“Just hold the handlebars while I pull it up!  I don’t want them flopping around.”

“I said it was too heavy.”

“Okay.  There.  Now, get back on.”




“We’re going to the market!”

“Why me?”

“Why do you think?”

“I don’t want to.”


“Okay, okay.  I can’t believe I’m doing this.  You almost kill me.  And now, you want me to try this again?”

”Just get on, Linda.”

“Getting on, getting on.”

“Now, hold on.  I mean it.”

“Yes, boss!”

“See.  You did it.  It wasn’t so bad.”truckin

“But how do we get home?”


….“You can push it from here.”

Wait!  That last line is from another PCV motorcycle story.  Better save that for another time.


A bit about this conversation

During the summer break after our first year as MS English teachers, a bunch of PCVs in our group, Thai 34, came to our school in Amphur Muang, Kalasin, for a workshop.  There was Chuck Cox, Pat Hughes, Bill Lulloff, Lowell Kyle, Pat Chambers, Tom Ryan, Steve Fox, Jim Kreuze, Larry Boehm, and, of course, Linda Gotthardt, Ted Slade and myself. Along with our counterparts, we PCVs spent two weeks, before heading to Bali, creating a book of supplementary English-teaching materials, Blackwater Brainstorm, for the lower secondary level.  Life for most PCVs in those days was facilitated by motorcycles.  So, during the workshop, we got around, sometimes three to a bike.  We may not have had computers or cell phones (the things had not even been invented yet!)  But we were fearless!

**Editors Note**

While Carolyn and her gang were able to express their fearlessness through wild motorcycle rides, the currently PCVs in Thailand are prohibited from such expressions. We now express our fearlessness through eating and trusting bus drivers.

1 reply »

  1. I was on that motorcycle ride!

    – Lowell Kile (Thai 34)

    * I just turned 73 an hour ago. How did that happen?)


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