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Old 06-06-2007, 12:01 AM   #16
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Hum-de-dum-de-dum-de-dum.
The Tamiami Trail is suffering from lack of maintenance, like every other public work in this tax-free state so the ride is a bit bouncy ( and I am rather more wealthy than I would otherwise be.)
Hum-de-dum-de-dum. You'd love a twisty right now, eh?
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:03 AM   #17
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Next best thing:
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:07 AM   #18
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Oh well, here goes and lets see how the Vespa does in the dirt.
You have to undertsand i ride a lot to and from work in the Keys, the island chain of perfect riding weather. So I have 8,000 miles on the scooter since new in November, and no falls or major scratches so far! 13 inch wheels and miles of washboard. Hmm.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:10 AM   #19
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Astonishingly enough we stay upright for 7miles of white rippling gravel, drawn, naturally, in a straight line with a geometric precision I might admire were i in the mood to do anything other than concentrate on the road ahead, checking for holes filed with sand and crevasses and other perils. Must seen pretty tame for those intrepid souls climbing impossible gradients on the sides of mountains.
Like I said, Florida is subtle. And you didn't believe me.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:12 AM   #20
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Whats this here thing on my wheel?
Its not a bird- it can't be the migratory season because there is absolutely bugger-all anybody out here in the heat- not a birder in sight.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:13 AM   #21
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And because we are a nation of abundance, when we have a surplus we do what with it? Why, chuck it in a pristine watercourse of course.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:16 AM   #22
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Having arrived at the confluence of Turner River road and Wagonwheel Road( there's a name to conjure with. I wonder whose misfortune that name celebrates?), I'd like to report some finding of major significance. Actually all i found was ...more of the same, this time in a westerly direction for 7 more miles.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:21 AM   #23
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The modern Vespa boasts an instrument panel you might like on your short-changed 250 Enduro. A tachometer which self-limits at 9,000 rpm, an amusing touch as there is no clutch or any way to control rpm really. Plus a date/time function. The date is a bit confusing in North America, unless you are Canadian, as the day and the month are reversed for the benefit of the rest of the world. The tank gauge is good, 2 gallons= 130/150 miles plus .4 of a gallon in reserve (Canadians do your own maths) and the trip shows 182 miles (300kms give-or-take) since home. The temp feels optimistically low as I am sweating profusely into my helmet. But you didn't need to know that, no doubt. And its only 9:33am. Phew! Oh and I filled up with super expensive ( by USA standards) premium at the Miccosukee pump next to he restaurant.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:26 AM   #24
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Now here's the tricky bit. I've remebered how to drive on washboard ( go like hell and hope there are no obstructions. 45mph smooths out the ridges and the windshield stops twanging like a harpsichord on agitate cycle).
Don't get over-confident, Michael, I keep telling myself. I picture my little wheels spinning uselessly as I lie in a bloodied lonely heap on this deserted stretch of road, in the abomination of desolation...
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:28 AM   #25
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Lo! wait! What fearsome thing is this?
An urban street sign? A litter control plea? Where am I ?
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:29 AM   #26
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In suburbia is where, and Waste Management comes by for trash pick-up on Tuesdays, it turns out.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:31 AM   #27
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Well, its suburbia after a fashion. Rather messy really to be true suburbia, but they have electricity and everything out here in the middle of what-formerly-appeared-to-be-nowhere.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:32 AM   #28
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Yes, and don't I feel silly. Mr Explorer breaking new ground on a Vespa, and here come the little dears in a big yellow bus.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:36 AM   #29
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Civilization beckons, smooth roads, cold drinks and the blessings of the US Postal Service.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:39 AM   #30
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Yes, yes I know you've seen it before, the World's Smallest Post Office. But I'll bet you didn't know this. This 8foot x7ft post office serves 900 people on 130 miles of roads with just one letter carrier but, where does the postmistress go when she needs to go?
Yes I had the gall to ask, and she unblushingly told me she shuts up shop and pops home after unwedging herself from her miniscule office.
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