Don Quixote by Pablo Picasso
Steinbeck, Charley, and Rocinante taking a breather
Any allusion to Cervantes' Don Quixote is ambitious considering the complexity of the novel. At its most superficial level it appears that Rocinante comes from the fusion of rocin meaning "nag" and ante which is latin for "before". It describes the fantastic transformation of a humble workhorse to noble steed which makes for a striking parallel to the restoration of a vintage motorcycle. I should say that my Rocinante still has a bit of transforming to go!
Monument to Cervantes in Madrid
Finally, the allusion to Don Quixote describes my relationship to vintage motorcycling namely in terms of what scholars may describe as naive idealism. I don't think I am alone in saying that I am not only attracted to the hobby for the bikes but also the period of history in which they were built. In an age where technology invades nearly all aspects of life, it's refreshing to work on a purely mechanical contraption and the simpler life associated with the era in which it was produced. Clearly, that craving has spurred a renewed interest in the "good ol' days" characterized by the resurgence of the Ace Cafe, Bonneville, hot rods, as well as the numerous print and online publications supporting the vintage motor world.
Rockers at the Ace