I highly recommend the V-Strom 650, from personal experience, and the FZ-6 from my sister’s experience. Both are pretty tame below half throttle, have actual handlebars that can be cheaply and easily raised/swapped to improve ergos, and are relatively light. My Wee, an ’09 ABS model, is about 430 pounds, and maybe 65 horsepower. With 200 pounds of me and gear, this gives a power-to-weight ratio below 10 pounds per horsepower. That’s Mustang GT range.
Yes, the Wee looks like one of those Transformers toys – not as bad as my brother-in-law’s KTM Superduke, or the new Gladius – but I do get seen by the cages.
As far as the upright seating position goes, as long as I remember to be tight below and loose above, my carpal tunnel doesn’t bother me on the Wee. I just sold my 1990 Honda VTR250, the Baby Interceptor, a nominal sport bike. It was a blast to ride, but my hands went numb after only about ten minutes of riding.