Oh, man. Clear the streets, Elias is on two wheels! Just pullin’ your chain!
Take that nice big parallel twin to an empty parking lot ASAP. Extra points if it’s the parking lot that they teach MSF classes in, so the markings are there. Get good with turning and braking. Especially emergency braking. Don’t be gung-ho and try to get mad short distances your first week, but focus more on getting used to it. It’s better to get the over-ambitious emergency stopping mess-ups out of the way in a parking lot than at an intersection at 45 MPH with a cage behind you waiting to crush you when you low-side. And remember, roads are slick as hell in the middle. What you can pull off in a clean parking lot ends up causing massive skidding and sliding near a stop light due to the oil and grease on the road. Be ready for it!
I’d avoid highways at this point. There’s not much to highways, but there are a few things that will make you anxious until you are used to your bike. Mainly, accelerating up to speed on the on-ramp if it’s a curve and merging. And getting used to the mad wind gusts of a semi-truck flying past, or you flying past it. Just don’t fight the gust too much. You’ll know what I mean when you get there. And because everything is happening so quickly, you truly do need to give yourself more room to the car in front of you, and look farther down the road. A busted up tire piece in the road comes up quick at 70 MPH. Until you’ve had to swerve around something in the road at 45-55, I wouldn’t recommend freeways. At some point on your first highway ride, it’ll probably hit your mind like it did me my first highway ride — the only thing between me and the pavement is my riding skills. Things are happening so quickly, you can’t let your mind wander off. Emergency stopping to a complete stop isn’t a good solution at 70 MPH — swerving and making your own (hopefully paved) path out of trouble is.
If any of you guys think I’m giving bad advice, speak up. I only have 2 months under the belt of the Ninja 250, but it seems like the difference between night and day at this point from when I started riding the 250, afraid to leave residential streets.