Easy Rider – our latest expat experience


Expat Life & New Experiences

Back in sedate St Albans it wasn’t uncommon to pull up behind the odd Ferrari or Maserati at the traffic lights, but since we moved to Canada it’s been all Mustangs, pick-up trucks and Harley’s.

Once the stuff of notable occasion, now the throaty roar of a Harley Davidson is part of the auditory landscape, just as fire hydrants are part of the physical one. Even after three years we still get a thrill from actually living all the stuff we’d only ever seen in the movies. So when my neighbour offered to take the kids for a spin around the block, there was no way we were passing THAT opportunity up!

Harley’s & Honda’s

J and T both confessed afterwards that they were a little scared, (‘especially’ J said, ‘when we turned left or right and I had to lean in’) but kudos to them both, they hopped on unhesitatingly. S, naturally, isn’t phased by anything and looked as though she’d been doing this all her life.

I’m excited about maybe heading out on the Harley soon too, but in the meantime, have a squizz at these photos and hear this – as mothers, standing back and letting go of our kids can be excruciating. Try watching that precious bundle of baby-soft skin and innocent wonder disappear down the street on the back of a motorbike and tell me your heart’s not thudding…

I think we all felt something powerful today.


Thanks Wanda and Kevin for the memories (and photos) that’ll stay with us for life.



By Aisha Ashraf

An autistic Irish immigrant in a cross-cultural marriage, Aisha Ashraf is the archetypal outlander, writing to root herself through place and perspective. Published in The Rumpus, The Maine Review, River Teeth, HuffPost and elsewhere, her work explores the legacy of trauma, the nature of being an outsider and the narrow confines of belonging. She currently lives in Canada.


    1. Oooooh! Best of luck – when and how did you first get the Harley bug? I said to my neighbour ‘I may be on the verge of discovering an addiction I never knew I had!’

  1. Aisha, I bet the kids were thrilled. They look totally confident and relaxed. And what a cool Mom you are to let them have that experience. All the best, Terri

  2. Some great photos and memories there, Aisha. The kids look far too comfortable and familiar with those bikes. Are you sure they haven’t been getting in a little sneaky practice somewhere? 😉

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