It’s Never Too Late!

Earlier this week I talked about relaunching your life and blowing out the cobwebs. If you think I was talking to someone younger than you, I’m going to introduce you to someone who will inspire you to think differently.

portrait of Shirl
Here’s Shirl!

Meet my friend Shirly, from southern Idaho. I met her in 2010 in Cheyenne, Wyoming when we Conga riders rallied. She was 78 at the time! If you think you’re too old to do something you’ve always wanted to do—even something physical, I want you to listen to Shirly’s story.

When Shirl (as her friends call her) decided to learn to ride a motorcycle and took her Motorcycle Safety Foundation course, she didn’t do very well. Undeterred by either the setback or by her age, she hired an instructor to come to her home for private lessons on her large circular driveway.  For some while she kept at it, round and around and around…until she passed her test.

Shirl is not only determined, she’s wise. At some point she decided to trike her bike and that’s how she rides now.

In 2012 I had the good fortune of watching her pull into that circular drive as she returned from a twenty-day ride in ALASKA. Alaska is a destination most bikers either aspire to or daydream about. Shirl took it to the next level and DID IT!

Accompanied by a married couple from her HOG (Harley Owners Group) Chapter in Twin Falls, they rode their bikes to upstate Washington and shipped them to Alaska, where they flew up and visited with family while waiting for the bikes to arrive. When their ship came in, they rode the 49th state for 20 days, shipped the bikes back to Washington, then rode home to Idaho.

My husband and I house-sat for her while she was gone. To see her face when she pulled in home was a real treat. She looked radiant, happy and glorious in every possible way. “I’m stronger now, Tam, I can feel it,” she said, and so could I.

If you’re ready to re-launch your life in any way imaginable, take inspiration from Shirl. It’s never too late!

About Tamela Rich

Author Tamela has extensively traveled the U.S. and Canada, delivering her message to Pack Light | Travel Slow | Connect Deep. Her keynotes and workshops include life lessons she has learned through chance encounters on the road.

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  1. Thanks Tamela for sharing this story. After meeting Shirl personally at that same 2010 Conga rally and following her on FB for the past four years, I have to agree with you. Shirl is not only full of life and glowing at an age when most women her age have settled into the relaxed luxury of retirement, she’s living life to the fullest. A true inspiration to everyone and a role model to not only the elderly but to women everywhere. She should be the proverbial poster child” for Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams – It’s Never Too Late.
    Love that Lady,

  2. Thanks for the memories of 2010, Jenni. Some enduring friendships were born in Cheyenne.

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