Chili Ride For Chili

Saturday, October 14th, 2006

So early in the week, I got an e-mail forwarded to me from Newton from another guy that has occasionally visited with us at Sunday Morning Breakfast. It was about a Chili Lunch, going on at the Shelbyville Airport. There was not a lot of info, so I assumed that it was at some kind of restaurant. I forward the e-mail to the masses, with a meeting place of the Thronton's near my house, and meeting time of 11:00 am. I was hoping the later meeting time would allow it to warm up enough for even the fair weather riders to take a chance.

I said the meeting place was close, so at 10:55, I headed down to the fueling station in the parking lot of a K-Mart. I stayed seated on the bike under the sign advertising the gas price at $2.07; I didn't need gas. I had said that kickstands would be up at 11:15, and I waited until a little after that mark, put up the stand, and headed out alone.

It wasn't a real scenic drive, most of the way, as I headed east on Washington Street to Franklin Road, and took it south to Brookville Road, or US 52. From there, I headed southeast for several miles until I came upon SR 9. I took it south, and it would take me right into the heard of Shelbyville, but the airport was on the northwest side of town. I had a route plugged into the GPS, and I had planned a turn at road called Old Mill. This road was a bit more scenic, although the first bit of scenery was lot of cornfields, some harvested, some dry and brown, and ready to be taken in. Eventually, this road would curve and snake through some nice tree lined areas. At some placed the road narrowed, and a pair of ninety degree turns nearly made me lean into to overgrown shrubbery.

I could tell that I was nearing the air field from three planes circling, and making touch and go landings. The closer I got, the closer I could see them get to the ground. As I pulled into the Airport Authority, one plane buzzed overhead. I couldn't see any signs, or any thought of a restaurant? I stepped inside, and a older woman was standing behind a counter. I asked where the Airport restaurant was. She looked bewildered, and told me there was no such think. I then mentioned that someone was serving chili today at noon here at the airport. The light bulb went on, and she directed to me to the correct hanger.

A younger man pulled up in a car, and he was looked as though he was lost. "Are you looking for the chili?" I asked. He was, and I told to just follow me. Like I really knew where I was going. I pulled down County Road 100, south to the drive where there were three hangers. Cars were parked on one side, but I still wasn't sure that this was the place. I pulled into the next drive, and cruised around one of the hangers, riding the on the tarmac. I could see planes pulling in, and a group of people standing outside of the hanger the woman had directed me to. I guess I was here!

It seemed this was a fly in, drive in, pitch in, although only about half the 50 or so people had brought something with them. Besides chili, just about everything else was dessert, except for the couple of salads. Newton and his wife showed up, and we sat at a table and talked, and had some pretty darn good chili! Two weeks, two rides, two bowls of soup.

After some time, and couple of bowls, I headed back out into the chili air. It was less biting, and the sun was blazing down. I headed out on some County Roads, eventually linking up to Boggstown Road. I took it west to London Road, and then one of my favorite rides, up through Sugar Creek, and eventually to New Palestine. There wasn't a lot of color, but the twists in the road where there, and I had a good time carving up the road, too bad no one else was here to enjoy it with me.

I would eventually rejoin US 52, and take it northwest to Shadeland Avenue, north to Washington Street, fill up with gas, and head for home.
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