The bikers were already crowding the old road to location where Handlebar had stood for years. Singapore’s relentless drive of renewal had displaced “the” hangout for Harley Davidson, Ducati, and anyone passionate about bikes. In the six months since it had closed, I have missed the casual atmosphere, good food, and interesting conversations. The new Handlebar was opening tonight and a group had gathered to ride from the old to new, letting go of the past and celebrating the rebirth.
As I maneuvered my bike into an opening between the parked bikes, the lead rider slowly walked through the group explaining the route change. There was an unexpected traffic jam on our original route. The lead had found a longer but smooth flowing route and he wanted everyone to know and understand.
In the middle of big bad Harleys and men and women in leathers stood a filmmaker who was riding a Vespa. As he listened intently to the instructions, he firmly looked the tribal leader in the eyes and said without hesitation, “Keep it simple. What do I need to know?”
The leadership paused as he considered his lengthy explanation. “Stay behind me, stay with the group. If you do not see someone at an exit or turn, keep going straight. We will get you there.”
“I get that.”
The words were simple, direct, and to the point. Sometimes, more is less. Almost always, less is more. One leader left us with an observation that is worth remembering; “When I’m in a church assembled for worship, I’d rather say five words that everyone can understand and learn from than say ten thousand that sound to others like gibberish.” (1 Corinthians 14.19)
As we role, the Harley thunder was strangely soothing. Today’s family was together. Those with experience were leading and keeping others in the community safe. In moments of uncertainty, guardians rotated into position to keep everyone on track. It was a fun ride that ended in a celebration of community and possibilities.
It was a fun evening based a model that works today.