Posts

Showing posts from 2009

Get Your Tickets!

Image
Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Motorcycle riding is often compared to being a cowboy, just that you sit atop a steel horse. Well, there are days you feel like the cowboy, and days you feel like the horse. I know the above map is a mess, but allow me to explain.

I started out on my usual route across town, and into Danville, Indiana. I headed west on Washington Street, then veered off on Rockville Road, crossing 465 where it becomes US 36, splitting my way through Avon, Indiana, and then into Danville. When I arrived at Kasey's house, no one but Jessie, her Chocolate Lab, and her two cats where home. I let myself in.

When Kasey and her two kids got home, I was in the back of the house on the computer checking my email. There was no Hellos, no How are you doing, they were both heading down one track. It would have sounded like a chorus if they weren't screaming, the refrain? Can we go on a motorcycle ride!

Well, Kasey and I laid out a plan, first, she would take her daughter to …

Riding for a Cause

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Before I talk about the ride today, I thought I would list some of my thoughts on Motorcycle Rides for Charities. I look at it as a way to do good things while I am enjoying a hobby. However, I have found that their are some I like being a part of, and some I have decided to just not ride in anymore.

In Indiana, we have a riding season, usually dictated by the weather. However, the ride calendar is often dictated by hopefulness. Evidence of this is the fact that charity motorcycle rides start in late February and Early March. These are times of the year that inches of snow can blanket the landscape, and temperatures can be in the single digits, plus or minus! By the end of March, there are multiple rides every Saturday and Sunday to raise money for good causes. This lasts until past Thanksgiving often times. Heck, I know of at least two rides that take place on New Year's Day, now.

Some fund raisers have even created events that take place during …

Celebrating with Old Friends

Image
Friday, August 28, 2009



It is hard top believe, but one year ago, I hopped on The Pearl, rode it over to Danville, Indiana for the only the second time to pick up Kasey to go on a ride. It was her second ride with me, and I was going to introduce her to some of my friends. They wouldn't shake her hand, or give her hug, but they would carry her over trouble waters. We took a tour of Covered Bridges, and did run into a couple of human friends, the owners of the Bridgeton Mill.

So flash forward a year. The Pearl is in the driveway, we have our helmets and riding gear on, and the bike packed down for a long weekend. We are heading back into Covered Bridge Territory, after a trip to Danville, Illinois.

We headed out of town making our way south. We meandered on Hendrick's County Roads until we got to SR 75. We took that south to US 40. We took The National Road west until we arrived at SR 243. The entrance to this state road is almost hidden, and I have missed it a couple of …

I would Steak my reputation on this ride.

Image
Saturday, August 22, 2009


There are some rides that I just don't know if they will be good rides or not. Then there are others that I just know I need to get somewhere, so it will not be a great ride. I am usually surprised. Either that, or I am able to find something that made it a good ride. Then again, any day of riding is better than many good days doing something else.

This ride will take us to a place I have been wanting to go for some time. I needed to plan a good route to get to the dinner table, as I knew the meal placed upon that table would be a great one!

We met at the Avon Shell, located at SR 267 and US 36. Kasey and I had come from her home in Danville, Indiana. I was looking for my brother to show, but he was busy with something that might make him not available. In his stead, Jim "easyrider" and my father showed up. Another small group, which means there are a lot of people who don't know what they are missing.

Another unique part of this ride w…

Riding is Work!

Image
Thursday, August 13, 2009



Well, when I can ride for work that makes for a great day! So here I was, at home, with my best girl, and camera operator for the day, heading out to work on two wheels.

I need to keep the project a little hush, hush for now, but hopefully soon, lots of people will know about it.

We started out heading on Franklin Avenue, and then followed the course my brother and I took on my birthday ride. Once through Boggstown, we veered around country roads until we arrived south of Franklin, Indiana in Ninevah.

Once through Ninevah, we passed Princess Lakes, and down the road to find a good location to shoot our video. We made our way to Beech Tree, then ventured further south, arriving in Gatesville, Indiana.

We shot the video sections we needed, and headed back out for Kasey's House. She didn't have a provision for her eight year old daughter, so we needed to rush our way home. That meant no lunch!

We made our way over to SR 135, and then headed north to Morga…

Birthday Ride 2009

Image
Saturday, August 8, 2009




Well, today's ride is a family event, my birthday, and it was going to be a family ride. With my brother in tow, we headed out to Washington Street, the east to Franklin.

We took Franklin south to Troy, and headed east again. Using Kitley and London Roads, we made our way further south and east.

London Road is one of my favorite roads, and we made quick work of its curves. It was not long before we made our way into Boggstown, Indiana. Some more county roads, and it was on to Flat Rock River Road, and scenic stroll over the Flat Rock River.

From there, we meandered our way through Greencastle, stopping for some water, and a break, then south to Napolean, where we made a turn east, and arrived in Batesville, Indiana.

Another great road lead us north, arriving on US 52, just west of Metamora, Indiana. We cruised into town, taking note of all the shops in this Tourist Trap, so of them closed from the economy. We were able to find parking along the canal, acr…

Just Couldn't End the Trip This Short

Image
Saturday, July 25, 2009



Well, Kasey and I had some time with out her kids, and we needed to take The Black Pearl back to her home. We started out across US 36, heading east into town. Rockville Road, as it is also known, runs into US 40, Washington Street, and this would take us the other tow-thirds through Indianapolis, and to my home.

Not so fast...Even though it was a cloudy day, and I was still flying blind without a GPS, and we had been on the bike an hour, Kasey just didn't want this ride to end so soon. I was not going to argue.

We made our way further east, going south on Franklin, then east on English Avenue until it ended. We returned north to US 40, and took it east until Muesing Street. It was under construction, and we made our way through the gravel pit of a road.

We wound our way along Muessing, and on to Prospect, jogging back to Muessing and then further south to SR 52, Brookville Road. After heading south and east for a short bit, we turned south again on Kitle…

Riding Blind

Image
Saturday, July 18, 2009



Well, since being back from the marathon ride to Lancaster and Jacksonville, I have been flying blind. No, I didn't gouge my eyes out, I was without my GPS. It got soaked on the last day of the ride, and began to malfunction. After researching upgrading to a new model, I realized that I can not afford it in the era of Obamanomics. I believe the worst is yet to come. Well, Garmin to the rescue, they would repair or replace my existing model for 160 bucks. Very affordable compared to 600 to 700 for an upgrade.

So we took off without any electronic map before us. I made a route on Street and Trips, and had it packed away, but most of this route would be from memory. So we headed out of Danville, Indiana.

We went west on US 36 until SR 75, which we took south. Not the most scenic or curvy roads in Indiana, but it took us down to the National Road, US 40.

Heading west once again, we rode until SR 231 and then headed south again. As you get closer to Spence…

I Hate Being Forced to Ride

Image
Thursday, July 16, 2009



I was about to head out on the bike to a destination that I had just visited the day before, Dreyer Honda South. I had gone the day before to show them the Air Cleaner Cover on my Honda VTX 1800 to get it replaced still under warranty. I had driven it down there before, only to find out that the crack under the chrome could not be seen when the bike is warm. So yesterday, I drove the cover, in my very cool air conditioned truck, only to be told that I need to bring the bike back.

So here I am, forced to ride. So the Air Cleaner was mounted back on the bike, and I was heading out. I figured if someone was twisting my arm to ride, I may as well make it a scenic trip.

I started out heading east on Washington Street to Franklin Road, and then heading south. After heading this way for a mile or so, I arrived at SR 52, Brookville Road, that I took south and east.

Just short of the town of New Palestine, Indiana, I turned south toward the little creek side town of S…

Making the Way Home

Image
Sunday, July 5th, 2009


Wow, it was hard to believe that here it is the 16th and final day of the trip. We started out heading north through Cookeville, TN. It was only about 50 miles or so until we were in Kentucky.

And while in Kentucky, we were on some good country roads, two lanes, not divided, and windy through the Bluegrass State.

We ere riding through farm country, a mix of fields of corn, beans, and sometimes tobacco, and also cattle. As we passed one field with cows along the fence, I revved the engine once. None of them along the fence even noticed, but Kasey said that one further out seemed to look up in disgust. On the intercom, I said I knew what he was thinking.

"What's that?" Kasey asked.

"That guy thinks he got game," I started. "Wait until he hears the exhaust of this Cow-asaki!" Then I made a loud farting noise. After Kasey laughed, I continued. "Damn, I just pooped on my tail!"

That would be the light moment of the day,…

Turns of the Bars

Image
Saturday, July 4th, 2009


As we prepared to head out into the land of Boiled Peanuts, both plain and raw, whatever that meant, I was contemplating just how many times I have turned these handlebars. It could have been because we had made few turns in Georgia so far, and that we were on our way to making a lot of turns, and as advertised - 318 turns in 11 miles.

I will admit that as we entered the foothills of the Smokies, the ride was getting better. Eventually we hit a place that Kasey's Brother suggested, Blood Mountain. It was a fun stretch of road to ride, except for the idiot in the full size van with a trailer flying down the road.

We passed through North Carolina and into Tennessse. As we approached Telico Plains, TN we saw more and more motorcycles. We rolled into town, and approached the restaurant that was suggested in a motorcycle magazine I had just read.

It seemed to be a first on this trip, a place I had picked to eat was not only there, but was open. We stepped i…

Riding in Georgia and Boiled Peanuts

Image
Friday, July 3rd, 2009


If you look at the dates on the posts, you will see there has been a few days since my last post, and it is because we have taken four days off of riding. Two of the afternoons were spent on the beach, enjoying the waves crashing on the sandy beach. Thursday afternoon, Kasey spent hanging around the pool at her parents house, while I was The Stadium Course of The Player's Championship at Sawgrass. For not playing golf in a couple of year, borrowed clubs, and new shoes, I played pretty well. The new shoes came from the fact that the box full of our clothes, including the shoes, never got picked up from the hotel.

We headed back out of Florida, and it felt kind of cool, as cool as Florida can get in July. After getting through Jacksonville, and over the big bridge that many a cruise ship passes under, we arrived on SR 1. We headed north out of Florida, and I swear, as soon as we crossed the border into Georgia, it got hotter!

It could be that the scenery wa…

To Florida: Day Three: Momma Wants to See Her Kids

Image
Sunday, June 28, 2009

On this morning, if you felt a slight tremor beneath your feet, or your bed, it was the Earth shaking from Kasey arising early. I am not sure she knew there were times in the morning with single digits. She had mentioned that she was sick for her kids, and wanted to get to them, so she was up at 6:15am, wanting to get breakfast, and on the road by 7.

Well, we missed the 7am Ass in Seat Time by a few minutes, mostly because I was hunting for my sunglasses. But we were still on our way much earlier than the 9am time I had scheduled.

We started back down US 17, heading south. Today’s ride would be much more inland. We were making good time as cruised through the remains of South Carolina. It was cooler, and much more comfortable, and stops were shorter. We did notice that in this area, they have gas stations called, “El Cheapo”. We had t laugh at that.
One theme I have noticed on this trip, is the amount of road work being done. We traveled along an area where …

To Florida: Day Two: Life's a Beach

Image
Saturday, June 27th, 2009

You know it is funny, you can tell who real friends are, but you have to spend time apart to find it out. Take my friend, Mike. We met in college at Vincennes University. He lived in the dorm room across from me the first year, and the room next to me the second year. I lived in the same room both years. I was the Resident Assistant my second year, and lived with the R.A. the first year. Mike and I were studying the same thing, and often had the same classes. Not always at the same times, but I do remember one semester, we just bought one set of books for both of us. Being 18 to 20 year old, I really didn’t know much about making and keeping friendships, but I may have known more than I thought I did.

So here I am leaving Mike’s Home, his wife and his four children, born 33 months apart, and it had been 20 years since I had seen him before this. We had been in and out of contact with each other since, through email, cards, and instant messenger. The n…

To Florida: Day One: What is so High about this Highway?

Image
Friday, June 26th, 2009

There is a mixing of a lot of emotions on the morning after the rally. The Good-Byes are sad, the thrill of the last few days satisfying, and the thought of next year made you grin. There are a lot of people at this rally that I just wish I saw more than once a year, and for longer than three days. Most we wouldn’t see, they either had taken off early, like Kevin and Virginia, or were still loading up the bike, like the group from Bloomington, Indiana.

Kasey and I fired up the fully loaded Pearl, and pulled out of the hotel. We started out heading west through York and Gettysburg. It is interesting going through town that al I know came from a text book. Once through the town famous for an address that doesn’t designate a location, we head south.

We were still on state highways, and even though there was traffic, we still were making good time. Good enough time that at some point, we caught the Virginia Group. Sunshine Bob has promised me a picture of Kase…

GOE XIII: Day 5: These Rallies Go By Fast!

Image
Thursday, June 25, 2009

The last day of Gathering of Eagles XIII, Cruisin with 09 in 09 is in its last day. First off is some riding, but not a lot of distance. It was the biker games. The solo slow ride started out the day, followed by the two up, and then the Water Balloon Toss, aka the Bike Wash. Kasey and I didn’t do well on any of the games, and the new Bike Joust event was not an exception.

Next was the Poker Run, and the bikes lined up across the street from the hotel. We had a meeting and grouped up in 10 to 12 bikes. Kevin and Virginia were in another group, and this is something that Kevin and I have done on purpose many times, to get us out and talking with other cruiser clubbers. We were in the group with people from Bloomington, like Van and Betty, and John and Sue, and Kasey was getting along great with them.

This trip was through Pennsylvania Dutch Country, and we were led to a buffet. After another filling meal, we headed back out into the country, stopping at a s…

GOE XIII Day 4

Image
Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The above map may not be the most accurate one I have posted on this blog. It was not my route, and I was just there to follow along, as I was promised fresh crab at the end of the mid point of the ride.

The morning started out rocky, and we decided to ditch the riding jackets, which left Kasey running back to the room, and leaving them. When she returned, the engines were running, and she knocked her helmet off the bike. After a quick fix of the shield, we joined the group and headed out.

It was a great ride out in the country, and I must say this are has a sense of humor when it come to naming streets and places. Bird in Hand, Intercourse, and then we found ourselves on roads like Pussyville and Blue Ball.

Chesapeake City, Maryland was across a large and high bridge. We parked at the base of the supports, and walked into the little village, finding a place along the water to eat.

The ride back was through Amish Farms. It was a great and scenic ride through …

GOE XIII Day 3

Image
Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Gathering of Eagles has begun once again. I was unaware that it had been proclaimed Tye Dye Tuesday, but Kasey and I donned our Tye Dye Rally Shirts after breakfast. After a long day, we were looking forward to a short day, so Kasey and I decided to head to Hershey.

It was a nice little ride on State Roads into the land of chocolate. You could smell it when you got into town and along the factory. We meandered our way through town, and through the park, and to the Chocolate Park. We found a shady spot under a tree, parked The Pearl, and headed out to enjoy the sweetest place on Earth.

I know this is not about riding, but we did take the Tram Ride. It had a cheesy show in front with some actors. We got some history about the Hershey’s, but I am not sure it was worth the torture. At one point, the male actor was dresses as a woman, and pinched my cheek. She said I need shave, to which my response was, she need one too!

We took another ride, this one more …

GOE XIII: Day 2

Image
Monday, June 22, 2009

We began to group up, and pack up the bikes in the morning. Another round was had at Shoney’s, this time for breakfast. It was a lazy Monday Morning, and the working girls were late to get into their truck, which had some personalized plate to the effect of Skin4You, and he took off. I think this was the first time that Brad had noticed that the hotel was also a place of business.

It was nearly 10, and we had miles to get under our belts, so we headed out of the Super 8, and out along the Ohio River on Ohio’s State Road 7. We ran along the water way until St. Mary’s , where we crossed, and followed the river on SR 2 on the West Virginia Side. It was our third state to ride in on this trip.

We continued along the river for as long as we could, and even though we were heading to the city with Three Rivers Stadium, we had to veer from the waterways to get to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. At one point, we actually arrived back at, and rode on US 40, the National Road.…

GOE XIII: Day One

Image
Sunday, June 21, 2009

It is hard for me to believe, but here I am, ready to take off for my 8th Gathering of Eagles, Cruiser Club, USA’s National Rally. This is my second in Pennsylvania. The first trip was a trek through Canada and New England to get there. This route would have its wonderings too, so stay tuned.
The plan had us leaving around 11, so my brother and sister-in-law would not have to get up at the “butt crack” of dawn to drive an hour to my house. My sibling and his bride showed up around 10, we were all ready to take off, so we headed out an hour early. This allowed to avoid the interstate, and head out on US 40, the National Road.

There was great little towns that we made our way through, and they looked different, more spruced up or something, maybe it was because I had Kasey on the back pointing out the things I was missing. One thing we didn’t miss, was a large gentleman on a scooter. That poor little motor was really working to get him along the road.

Eventually…

Its All In The Timing

Image
Saturday, June 20th, 2009

You know, sometimes, things just have a way of working out. You know, you go through your day, getting the things done that you need to, and then all of a sudden it has all worked out better than you expected. Take all those times you are meeting someone. You have the fears of they not showing up, you not being able to get there, and then being late, who will have to wait on the other. Today, was a day of a meeting. Tomorrow, I was heading off on an odyssey, with Kasey in tow, first to Pennsylvania, and then to the Sunshine State.
Kasey and I had waited at her house, doing some final things before the trip. We were waiting for a call to know when to take off. The phone call never came, and Kasey and I’s stomach’s were groaning, and we need to head out to get lunch.
With no call, which meant no knowledge that we would meet anyone or not, let alone when we were going to meet them. We went north out of Danville along SR 39. We took it all the way to Lebanon…

You Know It Is Good Place to Eat When...

Image
Sunday, June 14th, 2009



Well, I have been wanting to ride, but just had not made an opportunity for a bit. Well, Al, the vice president of the Cruiser Club had called, and wanted to ride this weekend. He had found a new place to ride to and get a bite to eat, and he was dying to lead me there.

I polished up the bike a bit, and waited for Al to roll up the driveway. I need gas, and that would be our first stop. We both fueled up at the Thornton's. Al asked about taking 465 to I-65 down south. I had to ask, he seemed to want to get there fast, if he was really that hungry. He dislikes the super slab as most of the riders I motorcycle.

We would have started out on 465, but Al missed the turn, and in true Cruiser Club fashion, we made a U-Turn. It happens to the best of us, trust me.

Well, we got on 465, and rounded the circle city, and made our way to I-65. We began heading south, past Greenwood, and then Franklin, Indiana. It was all that a ride on the highway can be, mind num…

2009 Soup Run: Day 3: Back Home Again...

Image
Sunday, May 31, 2009





The day would start early on the final day of Soup Run 2009 for us. The first stop was Frank's Diner in Kenosha for a garbage plate. This place was already popular enough, but when featured on Diners, Dives and Drive Ins, it got a shot in the arm. It was chilly this morning, with the temps hanging around 40 degrees. I layered up on the gear, and we headed into downtown Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Getting there early helps to get a seat, with three of us, there was not time to wait to get a seat at the bar, so we were guided to the back room for a seat at a table. After getting sass from nearly all the wait staff, we placed our orders.

Don't come to Franks if one: you are in a hurry, and two: you don't have a sense of humor. If you don't want to rush, and aren't afraid to laugh in the morning, then make it a good time!

After breakfast, we headed back to the hotel, but not without incident. After starting the bike, it rolled back into the curb, with …