When I was just a wee lad growing up in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania I didn't know anyone that rode. In fact, it wouldn't be till I moved to Charlotte, North Carolina right out of University that I even knew anyone that owned a bike.
As I grew older my circle of friends grew to include bikers, many of whom were serious about their Harley's, BMW's and one guy I knew even collected Indian's. Hell, even my ex wife rode! Yet I still did not understand what the big deal was.
My reasons for getting the scooter I did were more economical than anything but I know understand why they would take off for a weekend and just ride with no particular destination in mind. In a way I'm sorry I didn't "get it" before. So when I decided to upgrade from a little 125cc to the bigger 400cc Burgman I knew I would get my endorsement.
We also had to learn it in the pouring rain and howling wind over a short two day period, not the ideal condition's but I was looking at it this way; if I did well now...I know I could it in better conditions. A opinion that seemed to be shared by my fellow trainees.
So after a few mistakes and a few realizations that "Yes, I've been doing this wrong!" I worked hard on correcting those mistakes. Breaking habits that I somehow picked up - like covering the front brake handle with my hand. While I'm not happy with my final score (I am my own worst critic) I can say that I did OK.
So I have the insurance, the licence, the experience will come with every mile under my wheel. I'm part of the brotherhood now, for better or worse. I took the class through the Motorcycle Safety Foundation and highly recommend it to anyone thinking about riding, or who has ridden illegally for a while.