New Year's Day 2006
For the third New Year's Day in a row, it looked as though I was going to be able to throw my leg over the saddle, and hit the road on two wheels! I know a lot people probably think "Big Deal", but in Indianapolis, being able to get out on New Year's Day is cause for a celebration. Now I am probably going to hear it from people further north, and how much worse their winters are than Indiana's, but I am talking about motorcycling here.
For the entry for the 2004 New Year's Day Ride, click here.
For the entry for the 2005 New Year's Day Ride, click here.
Here it is the first day of 2006. Around Christmas Day, I checked the long range forecast, and it was calling for showers on New Year's Day. By the time the day had come, the showers where postponed until evening, or even the next day. I woke up around 7:45, with an appointment to meet some other cyclists at Shapiro's, Downtown. This group meets every Sunday, usually at Shapiro's, but sometimes we move around during the regular riding months, as breakfast becomes more than jumping off point for conversation about motorcycles, to actually riding them sometimes. Mr. Reed began this little group of weekly bikers, and it has been called from time to time, and affectionately so, Reed's Eaters. There are lot of different factions within the realm of motorcycles, and the people who ride them, and I enjoy riding with the ones that have the following philosophy: Ride to Eat, Eat to Ride.
At shortly after eight, I had said good-bye to my significant other, Nina, and I was bundling up for the weather. A last check of my thermometer said 31.5 degrees. The official temp from the airport was 28. Somehow, that 3 and half degrees made it feel so much warmer? After getting on the rest of my gear, I was amazed that the MP3 player, fueled by a rechargeable battery, came on, and started playing. I slipped on my new gloves, ones made for snow boarding, and headed out of the garage. The garage is heated, and it was a comfortable 62 degrees.
Out on the road, running about 40 mph, I was really amazed at how comfortable I was. Nothing on my body was truly cold but my neck and chin, because I still can't find my neck warmer, that bare skin was taking the brunt of the cold air. The windshield help keep direct winds off my lower face. My hands, legs, everything else was cool, but I could certainly ride a long distance like this. My trip took me past a couple of parking lots, filled with Indianapolis Colts Tailgaters. The Colts already had a playoff bye, and home field throughout, so ordinarily this game meant nothing. That was until Coach Tony Dungee's son was found dead. This was the coaches first game back. I arrived at the Shapiro's Parking lot fully expecting to see Mr. Reed's Valkyrie. I was surprised that I saw his truck instead. I parked, dismounted, took off some of my gear, and headed into breakfast. "The real man has arrived," was how I was greeted by the other fellows, who didn't ride. Just so you know, it was Reed, Wild Bill, Tom, and Ron. If you every meet them, give them hell for New Year's Day 2006.
We talked about biking, and about how bad Dick Clark had looked at the New Year's Rockin Eve, agreeing that Mariah Carey was only there to show off her assets, which like the stock market, appeared to be losing ground as of late. In an attempt to expand my palette at Shapiro's, I went with the French Toast. I usually get their short stack, which might be short on stature, but is big on girth! After a couple hours of conversation, I rode back home. I parked the bike in the driveway, as Nina and I were going to ride to a friend's annual New Year's Day Open House. Nina had some items, too many to fit on the bike, to deliver to another party goer, so we took her car. The bike was pulled up into the warm garage for another hibernation period, hopefully for not very long.