The News Post:
Having spent most of two days catching up with my friends in Wisconsin, it was time to pack the big bike and move on. The question was, “Move to where?” With six days remaining before I was due in Los Angles, I had choices to make. A straight run could take as little as two days, perhaps three. What to do with the rest of the time?
When I started this journey I had a very loose plan. First to see my friends, then I would perhaps catch parts of Route 66, starting at Chicago and landing in Los Angles. Now, the first objective was complete, I had not even tried to decide on a route towards the second. Ah, well, one more errand remained. I would still have time to think about it.
Remember those “friends in far away places” from the last installment? Well, my friend that I was visiting in La Crosse, Wisconsin, was headed for Los Angles too in order to see her very own friend in a far away place. Tuesday she needed a ride to the airport in Minneapolis, Minnesota to catch her plane. I was only too happy to oblige. It’s only about a hundred-fifty miles, she packs light, and it was a gorgeous day for a ride. What’s a hundred-fifty miles between friends?
A beautiful run, the wind in my hair and a friend at my back…there’s little else I need. It was over all too soon, the hundred-fifty miles gone in what seemed like mere minutes. I dropped her off at the airport and with strongly mixed feelings watched her retreating back as she eagerly headed for her plane. I sincerely wished her journey would go well.
The bike was gassed and ready. All that remained was the route. It was time to ride, and I still had no idea where to head. Sitting lightly in the saddle, the Valkyrie cruiser quietly idling beneath me, I was suddenly intensely lonely. Where to go? Southeast to Chicago? West to the mountains? There were friends in either direction…more of those in far away places…but which way? Both directions held appeal and yet the pall of loneliness colored the process of weighing the decision.
The heck with it. I pulled a quarter out of my pocket and flipped it high into the air. It bounced a few times and rolled to a stop a few feet in front of the motorcycle. I idled over to where I could see how it landed and without even slowing down as I passed it, gassed the bike and pointed it into the wind, leaving the quarter where it landed.
The decision was made. Heads. West it was.
I’ll see you on the road.
My Blog Post:
I'm sitting on the bed, eating Fritos. So, yah, I love hotels.
Been a great few days riding. Perfect weather, clear roads, and miles and miles to go. Tremendous thunderstorms on two days, but they kept their distance and just provided the breathtaking view...
BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! (maniacle laughter)
You hear that? That was me, thinking about work...the one and only time I will on this trip. My coworkers will understand..heh heh...
Sorry guys, there's riding to be done. Dunno what you're up to...but I'll try to get enough riding in for all of us....(durn slackers)
Ran about 750 miles Saturday, to Des Moines, IA. RJ put me up for the night, took me to breakfast, and saw me on the road Sunday.
Sunday I hit Wisconsin...La Crosse and Onalaska. 350 miles? Spent Sunday and Monday with my friend Raine, and got to see Beav (that's another friend...you guys put your dirty minds away) Monday evening. I had a very pleasant visit with Raine's daughter Angie on Monday.
Today I ran Raine up to Minneapolis so she could catch a plane to see her friend in Californina. Now, I'm somewhere in Iowa again. About 400 miles for the day.
For those that are wondering...gas is readily available...there are no shortages and no lines. It IS expensive though. I paid $3.69 on the Kansas Turnpike. It's been around $3.00 +/- 30 cents just about everywhere. I just blow by the SUV's and laugh...man I love motorcycles!
I really wasn't sure where I was going to go after Minneapolis. It's a big country and there's just so many roads to run. I've got 6 days before I have to be in LA. Where to go?
At a gas station in Minneapolis, I flipped a coin. Really. I'm headed west tomorrow...The Dragon wants to run...I think I gotta find some mountains to play with this Valk in...
Of course...I could change my mind in the morning...I could make the run to the house tomorrow and surprise the wife...it's only 750 miles out of the way....
Sorry for the rambling...it's hard to concentrate with this silly grin plastered on my face....
Good friends, good roads, great motorcycles.
There's not much else I need.
Index Introduction Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7 Part 8 Part 9 Part 10 Part 11 Afterword