Join Date: May 2015
Location: Marietta, GA
Year/Make/Model: 2010 Kawasaki Voyager
Hey DDW! I was 55 when I got my first bike and license. I can relate to what you are going thru. I dropped it twice the first weekend I was out practicing. The first time I got on a road outside of my neighborhood and got up to 50 mph, I almost $#!t a brick, smiling for ear to ear the whole time. What a rush!
You do not have to engage after each downshift, but you do want to learn when to downshift, so, as you said, you will be in the correct gear if you need to execute an escape route. You will only get that thru practice. Try to find some time when you can ride on streets with higher speed limits, but a minimum of traffic. Practice slowing down, engaging each gear to see how it feels. Practice emergency stopping downshifting as you go, but not engaging, and downshifting to a particular gear then engaging and accelerating. Knowing how to do that has saved my butt a couple of times.
It's a catch 22; you can't learn it if you don't do it, but you have to work within your skill set and confidence level. You will be surprised how quickly some skills become natural while others you have to continually work on to keep from developing bad habits.
RAM mount for TomTom Rider 400 (with anti theft module)
6000k LED Headlight & Spots; Kisan Headlight Modulator (works with LEDs),
__Brake Light Modulator, LED License Plate Holder
Dobeck EJK 3.0
Lucky Mirror Extenders
Misc. RAM Mounts for Cup Holder, SPOT, Phone, etc.
Chuckster BAK, Trailer Hitch and Cooler Rack
Wiring for Trailer
Ray's Throttle Mod
Things to do:
Drilling Baffle Plates (Maybe)
Paint HF Tag Along Trailer to Match Bike