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Old 07-08-2014, 11:27 PM   #52
cleandirt
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Joined: Apr 2010
Location: Little Rock
Oddometer: 80
Talking about highs and lows, this day had 'em! Waking to the view of Gothic CO was doubtless one of the many high notes on the trip. Then the research assistant kid walks into camp asking for a ride. If only he had known what he was walking into, I do believe he would have just keep trudging along. We were in the middle of camp chores when he sauntered up. It took a few minutes before Bret was ready to load him up and pack him down the road. We used those moments to great effect. As the kid listened to our banter I could see a look on his face, as if wondering into our camp was the greatest and possibly last mistake he had made in his short life. Then we get him to divulge that he was 18 and from New Orleans, so young and far from home… how could he have predicted things could go so wrong so fast, to find himself in the wilds of Colorado surrounded by Arkansan ruffian hillbillies on motorcycles! On hearing the kids story Bret exclaims, "YOUR A COOOONASSSSS!!!" Now, some folks might take offense and see such a term as a pejorative, but most of the Cajuns I've met wear it like many Arkansans wear the term redneck, kind of a badge of honor.This kid just seemed baffled by the exchange. This got me to thinking about the etymology of the term. It turns out the origins aren't too clear. One theory has to do with a transformation of the French word "connasse" approximately translating to "dirty prostitute." I suppose that could have lead to the baffled look. More likely he was a nice kid from a decent family who never used terms like coonass, furthermore, perhaps not everyone from New Orleans is a Cajun, how are rednecks from Arkansas supposed to make such complicated distinctions? Anyway, now that he's asked he can't seem to find a way to rescind his appeal for help, so he climbs aboard Bret's bike. "Does anyone have a helmet I can wear?" A long moment of silence before Bret lies to him and says, "we're just going a mile up this dirt road, it'll be like walking speed." With a roast of the back tire the last I saw of the kid was his back disappearing in a cloud of dust. After an attempt to balance our karma by pushing the researcher's car out of the mud we get another highlight of the trip, Bret's telling of the ride up the road with the kid! When they took off from camp the kid was holding onto the luggage rack. Bret decided to make up a story for the kids benefit about how his wife wouldn't ride with him anymore, how he used to be a good rider but the last few years he's been wrecking a lot, his reflexes just aren't what they used to be, by the time Bret got to the part about being addicted to cough syrup he felt the kids arms wrap around him, holding on for dear life!
I guess we had done more harm than good that morning because our karma was way out of whack. Nothing that couldn't be overcome, but still.

•Bret getting his front wheel run over, then he and his bike getting knocked over by the lady in the truck.
•Getting stuck behind the pokiest dust creatingest truck ever in human history.
•I forgot I had wide side cases and ran into a pole at the gas station causing me to drop my bike, twisting the forks in the triple tree and breaking the subframe for my fairing.
•Getting lost and going for a wild goose chase down Little Cimarron Rd which led to more dropped bikes and great consternation.
•A flat tire that sounded like a clap of thunder followed by a clanging racket of the highest degree.
•Not only a flat tire, a flat that required a new tire while we were miles from a highway, much less a motorcycle shop.

Somewhere in there the good lord must have decided we'd had enough and bailed us out by sending Kyle.

Highlights of the day
•Gothic CO
•Rocky Mt Research Lab
•The kid
•Coming to the rescue of the girls with their car stuck in the mud
•Kebler Pass
•North Rim Black Canyon of the Gunnison
•Ending the day at Kyle's house eating pizza and getting an over due shower
•Even the challenges were highlights, maybe our karma was right where it needed to be.

cleandirt screwed with this post 07-08-2014 at 11:58 PM
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