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Old 08-21-2011, 05:51 PM   #16
Arrogant Horse's Ass #1
Joined: Nov 2001
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yeah I just try to keep up when we ride together. Awesome dear.

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Old 08-21-2011, 05:54 PM   #17
Avoiding the Skid-Demon
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Location: 22310
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Deming is where I finally found a shop to look at my dead-broke Honda when I rode out to California, and where I bought my white K75. I didn't even think of looking for steak, but if I ever pass through again, I'm having one in your honor. Looks tasty.

Ride on.
Proprietor of The Tidewater Forge Hot iron is my passion. Fire is my mistress. Let's dance.
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Old 08-21-2011, 11:24 PM   #18
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Location: Out riding with joy and breaking bikes
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Day 4 Aug 1 Mon

About 5 or 6 hours later the alarm yells in Pink Floyd’s voice…”Time to go, time to go, time to go”

I wolf down a granola bar while loading the bike. About every third stop (about every +/- 600 miles) I check the oil and top off. I was doing that when an old man, maybe 70, that made me think of Mr. Bojangles came over to where I was. He asked the usual questions and made the usual surprised looks to my answers. He seemed really nice and must have been a rather good looking man in the past.

He asked if I had any more granola bars left and if he could have one. Of course I did and I dug through my tank bag and pulled out two packages and pushed them into his dirty, calloused hands. He thanked me and turned to walk away. I told him to wait, and opened my saddlebag where I kept a stash of drinks and grabbed one out. “Here”, I said, “Those things are pretty dry”. He bowed slightly and thanked me again.

I looked up in time to see the hotel cleaning lady shake her head and roll her cart towards my room. I quickly finished loading and checking out the bike and was on my way. We were if fact all on our ways; never to see each other again.

On the turning away
From the pale and downtrodden
And the words they say
Which we won't understand
"Don't accept that what's happening
Is just a case of others' suffering
Or you'll find that you're joining in
The turning away"

By knocking out so many miles the day before, I was completely relaxed. Well, except for my back. I was getting a little sore from putting it on the center stand at every stop, then pulling it off without dropping it. It didn’t bother me near as much as the neuropathy from the old injury.

While riding I was constantly seeking a position of comfort and I probably made a funny figure going down the road. It seemed the best position was lying nearly flat on the bike with my feet hanging off the back in the air and my head level with the tank bag. I would prop my helmet chin on my left forearm across the tank bag and look through the gap left of the fairing and the mirror.

Even so, I was never pain free for more than a few minutes at a time. I didn’t take any pain meds because I didn’t want risk the effects of narcs while riding and nothing else touches neuropathy pain.

I decided since it was going to ride two with all the way I would use it to stay focused on the moment. The ER doc I mentioned before told me another thing that has stuck with me; it was about pain. He said something like, ‘If you can tell me you can’t take it any more, that’s not true. When you pass out from pain, THEN you can’t take it any more. Before that you can take if you control your mind, because that’s where the pain really is’.

I’m sure that he was simplifying the concept, and wasn’t saying that pain shouldn’t be treated but there was some truth in there.

Don’t misunderstand me, despite all of the above I do feel pretty good over all.

The wayward wind is a restless wind
A restless wind that yearns to wander
And he was born the next of kin
The next of kin to the wayward wind

In a lonely shack by a railroad track
He spent his younger days
And I guess the sound of the outward-bound
Made him a slave to his wand'rin ways

And the wayward wind is a restless wind
A restless wind that yearns to wander
And he was born the next of kin
The next of kin to the wayward wind

Passing through Tucson I remember driving up to the top of the mountain in the Santa Catalina Natural Area through the Sabino Canyon. I recall the extreme climate differences between the bottom and the top. The road was narrow and winding with dry low water bridges. If you are ever near there, I would recommend you go. It’s worth it.

I took my son to Kitt Peak for the nighttime tour and star watching years ago and to this day it was the best big telescope tour I’ve ever been on. At one point they had us all outside and the leader pulled out a high powered green laser pointer. I had never seen one before, but I promised myself to get one. It was amazing how he could point to a star then lead our eyes to another point then another thus showing us how to find objects in the night sky.

The drive down off the mountain without headlights was really cool though Johnathan was VERY worried we’d drive off the mountain.
Nana korobi ya oki

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who matter don't mind and those who mind don't matter "- Dr Seuss

Shoganai screwed with this post 08-22-2011 at 01:58 AM
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Old 08-22-2011, 12:12 AM   #19
Don't call me Wighty
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Location: Isle of Wight, England
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Better get me an extree large bucket
Go Jane Go

Treat your throttle and brakes like a pair of b**bies! You go grabbing them hard and you're going to get slapped. You want to massage them nice and smooth. That way the bike will kiss you. Chris Carr
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Old 08-22-2011, 12:15 AM   #20
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Are you going to post more, or shall I go to bed?

You're almost to California, and the crazy people.

All I wanna do is be more like me and less like you.
Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain, and most fools do.- Benjamin Franklin
Originally Posted by summerinmaine View Post
Mocking nitwits IS an intelligent contribution.
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Old 08-22-2011, 12:28 AM   #21
Shoganai OP
Let's do some livin'
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Location: Out riding with joy and breaking bikes
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Phoenix. The mythical bird who is consumed by fire only to rise anew from it’s own ashes.

I'm a slave of Karma
Spin the Wheel and I'm a King reborn
I'm a slave to Karma
I'm coming back, yeah, I'll be coming back
But for the last time

Who's at the center of the Wheel
The inventor of the Wheel
or another spinning servant
I'm the Master of my Wheel of my very own Wheel
Universal and recurrent

I really don’t remember Tucson with the clarity of other places due to the crash.
I told Steve when I got home that as I was riding the same route I rode in 2007, I had no memory of the road. I could recall leaving Jacksonville, staying at the hotel in Van Horn with Tony aka STriderCC, pulling over to tell him to go on without me because I needed a nap, and the ramp getting back on the interstate.

There was the dream-like feeling of laying flat with the heartbeat of the chopper blades cutting the air and lights in me eyes and then there’s nothing until being in the ER with AZstrommer at my side. He was a great comfort. He made me feel safe and he made me laugh. You know that stupid fade in/fade out effects they do in movies, well it was like that for the whole time until I was back home.

I think I was refusing a CT or x-rays and telling them to let me get up and I would be fine. Then Tony, who had gone on ahead was there and then Hoagy gave me the shirt he was wearing for the ride.

I have no memory of eating or drinking. There were moments I remember being in pain. They documented I was clearly hurting but refusing pain meds.

I feel more than remember that people were visiting me and even Bert rode all the way from his home to see me. And G-dog was there too. Timmr handled dealing with salvaging stuff off my bike and AZstrommer handled keeping everyone informed. 100mpg stayed with me at AZstrommers home. I remember the ride in the truck but I don’t remember where we were. There were others there I know but I can’t recall any faces.

Here I lie in my hospital bed
Tell me, Sister Morphine, when are you coming round again?
Oh, I don't think I can wait that long
Oh, you see that I'm not that strong

The scream of the ambulance is sounding in my ears
Tell me, Sister Morphine, how long have I been lying here?
What am I doing in this place?
Why does the doctor have no face?

Oh, I can't crawl across the floor
Ah, can't you see, Sister Morphine, I'm trying to score

AZstrommers post about the ER

What Steve posted about our friend Jeff

Someone on ADV gave me his airline miles to fly home as well.

I wrote this about my time in the hospital

First, I feel I let Steve down. I also let those down here that placed their faith in me.
I let Hoagy down.
I let myself down on levels I can’t express here. My personal failure is brutally hard to bear.

While in the hospital I broke down and cried out loud and was almost yelling as I struggled to clean myself and was I in so much pain I had to have the nurse to wipe me off. I started my period 2.5 weeks early and I couldn’t manage a kotex so I asked to wear a diaper so I would quite soiling the bed and chair. I was so embarrassed and ashamed. I was so demoralized I find I lack the vocabulary to convey it properly.

There is nothing that can steel a spirit against the loss of independence and nothing like having lost it to truly empathize with those that have. I know I’m different and more compassionate nurse because of what I’ve been through.

There are also no words to convey my continued gratitude to everyone, so thank you will have to do.

The Pheonix in me lept from those ashes as the miles glided benieth the old K-bike that carried me past that town. I bathed in the balm in Gilead and my spirit was healed. I had overcome that which I feared to face. I stood up on my bike and jumped up and down thrusting my fist at the sky! My heart was pounding so hard.

Across the street the river runs
Down in the gutter life is slipping away
Let me still exist in another place
Running under cover of a helicopter blade

The flames are getting higher in effigy
Burning down the bridges of my memory
Love may still be alive somewhere someway
where they're downing only deer
a hundred steel towns away

Oh rhythm of my heart is beating like a drum
with the words "I love you" rolling off my tongue
No never will I roam for I know my place is home
where the ocean meets the sky
I'll be sailing
Nana korobi ya oki

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who matter don't mind and those who mind don't matter "- Dr Seuss
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Old 08-22-2011, 05:55 AM   #22
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Hi Gwen

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Old 08-22-2011, 06:26 AM   #23
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Location: Charlottesville, VA
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One of the things that I long to be able to do is to capture the essence of my thoughts and memories while in the saddle and the essence of the music that accompanies them (I don't listen to music, though I hear it all the time). They have a poignancy and a value that never survives the translation to words.

Something about being on a long ride mellows the background noise of daily life that perpetually rings behind our awareness and threatens to drown out our true selves. Filters are removed and soft lights shine into dark corners, and the voice of the soul comes alive with a rare clarity. I suspect that everyone wants to preserve and share moments like these, but it takes talent, courage and will.

It's good to see that it is possible to translate these experiences, and that they mean so much to other people too. It's good to feel connected to other human beings.

Thanks for taking the time to do this, Gwen.

Originally Posted by Shoganai View Post
Texas holds a lot of memories for me. I remember traveling with my parents when I was 12. See, my Mother had/has an aggressive form of Retinitis Pigmatosa and was going blind quickly. So when I was 12, my Dad built a little wooden trailer and I helped paint it orange to match our Datsun 510. He loaded it with two kids (me and my Sister, age 9), and medium sized black, curly haired dog, and near blind woman and with nothing more that a Rand McNally, went off to see America before she lost all her sight.

"Let us be lovers we'll marry our fortunes together"
"I've got some real estate here in my bag"
So we bought a pack of cigarettes and Mrs. Wagner pies
And we walked off to look for America.

We camped and ate our fill of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for 2-1/2 months.

An especially poignant memory was standing knee deep in the Rio Grand in Big Bend National Park and watching a herd of wild horses running on the other side in and out of the river’s edge. I picked up a rock to remember that moment.

Mike Berlien aka Mike Butt was my friend though we never met on this side of the River. He was going to be my IBA Witness in San Diego in 2007 but I didn’t make it. So I wanted to honor him on this ride. I chose the rock I picked up as a child to carry with me to Gerlach, NV.

It felt right, this rock, on many levels. It was round like a motorcycle wheel, a rolling stone, with gray and white lines that looked like they were painted on it. It made me think of Mikes tattoos.

By the time I slipped smoothly through the still sleepy Houston the sun was starting to rub my back.

(There will be pictures later, I promise)

I must say that my son has exposed a reservoir of love and of worry within me that I never knew existed. --nskitts, 9/2/12
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Old 08-22-2011, 04:18 PM   #24
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2006
Location: Kitchener Ontario, Canada
Oddometer: 5,140
Congrats on getting back out there, completing the trip, and making a few new personal bests!

and thanks for sharing this "getting back on the saddle" episode of your life.
Save 20% on your first year's SmugMug image hosting with this link:
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Old 08-23-2011, 03:12 AM   #25
Shoganai OP
Let's do some livin'
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Joined: Mar 2005
Location: Out riding with joy and breaking bikes
Oddometer: 1,761
Where the ocean meets the sky is where I was sailing at 85 mph with
the sun in my face and the wind at my back.

Riding from Yuma and Ocotillo was sobering. A line in the sand.
Poverty and Prosperity. Have and have not.

Down and Out
It can't be helped but there's a lot of it about
With, without
And who'll deny that's what the fightings all about
Get out of the way, it's a busy day
And I've got things on my mind
For want of the price of tea and a slice
The old man died

From Ocotillo the road started it’s long, curvy, tractor trailer
killing, RV over heating climb over the mountains. The natural terrain
was beautiful as seen from the sweepers on the back of my blue steed.
But I couldn’t quit thinking of what an absolutely pure hell it must
have been to cross on foot by native and white men only a few hundred
years ago.

As I started my descent out of the mountains it’s ALL I could do not to go
as fast as I can. I said to myself I’ve gone all this way without a
speeding ticket and I MUST back it off. But like a barn sour old nag,
my bike just keeps going faster and faster and I keep pulling on the
reins and rolling off the throttle.

The radio's playin' some forgotten song.
Brenda Lee's coming on strong.
The road has got me hypnotized,
As I spin into a new sunrise.

When I get lonely and I'm sure I've had enough,
She sends comfort coming in from above.
Don't need no letters at all.
We got a thing that's called radar love
We got a line in the sky
Radar love

No more speed I'm almost there.
Gotta keep cool, now, gotta take care.
Last car to pass, here I go.
The line of cars drove down real slow.
The radio plays that forgotten song.
Brenda Lee's coming on strong.
The news man sang his same song,
One more radar lover gone.

I didn’t have quite enough fuel to make it to the end so I stopped
about an hour away. I was really hungry but wanted to push on so I
drank a box of chocolate milk then went to toilet. I needed badly to
get ride of the foley because the bladder spasms were horrible. I
wrapped it in many layers of paper towels and stuffed it in the big

Damn! That was a great relief!

The approached to the landing strip is lined with the tallest palms
I’ve ever seen.

Let me tell you about Garry. I joined the LDR List to find IBA
witnesses for my ride and many stepped up like Larry in Jacksonville
Beach. There were several in the SD area as well but Garry really
wanted to do this. I didn’t know it at the time but he’s followed my
motorcycle posts on ADVrider and wanted to meet me.
He rode three hours one way from Arizona for this! How can I thank him
for such a kindness?

He followed my SPOT tracker and did the math was there just before me.
I pulled up to the fuel pump but not quite in the right place. The
owner of the station had just walked out to the pumps to do something
as I turned the wheel sharply left to move into position and then the
tankbag hit the horn button.

(The dual stock Stebel-like horns are LOUD!)

He jumped and I startled and I started apologizing and tried to
explain what happened and that I wasn’t being an ass. He seemed ok
with it but I felt bad.

Garry and I went in the store where it was cooler and I bought three
Gatorades and tried to catch up on the hydration curvy. We talked and
talked like old friends catching up after being long parted and yet we
had never met before that day. I’m truly proud to say I met Garry IRL
and happy as all get out to call him my friend.

While Garry and were talking Steve called to say he could see I made
it. What a sweet surprise! (It wouldn’t be the last surprise Steve
pulls on me)

Johnny Dakar called me to say LA Woman was on her way to where I was.
WOW!! I couldn’t wait to meet her. I love her like a sister and feel
close to her through our exchanges on ADV. This was too cool for

This says it all.

Very cool!

Chick bikes.

I offered to buy Garry a meal but he said he had to head home, so we
hugged and like Knight on big black steed he was gone. Lisa and I
walked across the street so I could get my sand and water sample only
to learn why they call it Sunset CLIFFS. Duh!

Lisa leads me to a park nearby and at a stoplight I took this then
shoved the camera in her hand.

She took this.

I saw my first dog beach. What a wonderful thing. I never knew such a
thing existed. This is NOT the dog beach

I couldn’t find the little sample container I brought so I used my
empty drink bottle.

Lisa had to go to work and I head to their home. I follow the GPS to
where it says I have arrived and I can’t find their home. I start
driving around looking for it and make a couple loops around the area.
I end up right back where I stopped the first time, turn off the bike
and just as I take my helmet off my phone rings.

It John. He says he’s been following my tracker and can tell I can’t
find their place. After a few “what do you see” questions I learn I’m
parked RIGHT across the street from their home! *blush*

I let myself in and three dogs greet me. One who reminded me of Sir
Didymus from the Labyrinth; quite energized and vocal and one who
didn’t seem to care if I was there or not and my favorite was the
cat-like-thou-shalt-not-pass-without-petting-me couch rug.

I WANT one of these!

Went there, did this in 45 hours.

My stomach reminds me that I’ve not eaten in a long, long time and I
scrounge a can of tuna, add a little bit of mayo and eat it right out
of the can. Now all the sudden I’m the most interesting person in the
house as all three dogs gather at my feet on the couch. Sir Didymus
looks at me and says, ‘hey, don’t take the barking personal, it’s just
my job, you understand don’t cha. Now about that tuna…”

I finish off the last of the tuna and let each take a lick of the
remaining tuna juice out of the can. To quote George Thorogood…

“I tell the landlady I got a job, I'm gonna pay the rent
She said "Yeah?" I said "Oh yeah"
And then she was so nice,
loh' she was lovy-dovy.

I start feeling the miles heaping up on my shoulders like a thousand
pounds of wet sand and I have just GOT to lie down. I set my CPAP up
and lay down on the dog beds by the fireplace.

Boom boom O-U-T go the lights.
Nana korobi ya oki

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who matter don't mind and those who mind don't matter "- Dr Seuss
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Old 08-25-2011, 06:56 AM   #26
Shoganai OP
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Location: Out riding with joy and breaking bikes
Oddometer: 1,761
I woke up to Lisa coming home and the failure tapping of dog toes on hardwood. I was still in a slight fog and wishing I wasn’t so muddled so she makes us some great coffee.

One of the things I found myself doing for most of this ride was what I call ‘concentrated info sharing’. I feel I talk fast and ask a lot of questions because I know the face-time with all the people I met on this ride precious.

Tomorrow is not promised to any of us and I am always, ALWAYS acutely aware of this. Maybe because of what I do for a living? Maybe it’s because of the crash in 2007? Maybe it’s because of Adways and Mike? I really don’t know. I replaced my cell phone weeks after I got home and checked my voice mails one day. It was painfully sobering to listen to my Mothers frantic, worried voice asking if I was ok and to please call her back the night of the crash.

It felt like I had died that night and I was listening as a ghost might, helpless to change the events and forced to have to know the harm I caused.

I live in a near constant state of knowing in the back of my mind that I will never pass this way again. Here and now is all I have and I want desperately to suck all the life there is out of it.

I love the way the Rolling Stones said it.

Let's grab the world
By the scruff of the neck
And drink it down deeply
Let's love it to death
So button your lip
And button your coat
Let's go out dancing (riding )
Let's rock 'n' roll

We talked about this and that and laughed and sipped coffee until John
came home. Then it was debated which take-out to get and Chinese won.
Lisa went on and on about a dish called ‘salt and pepper chicken wings’ and I was thinking ‘ok, it’s just chicken wings’. She and I drove over to pick it up and when we got back we all shared the entrees.

Let me tell you that was without a doubt the BEST damn chicken I have ever had. And that’s sayin’ something coming from a long family history of southern fried chicken Diva’s.

Of course there was pictures, but not of the food, sorry. The dogs of course were also given some table nibblin’s and the petable couch rug had an especially effective nom nom procurement technique. The whole meal was great and the company and conversation better but it was getting late and weren’t on vacation, so Lisa insisted she fix up the couch for me to sleep, which wasn’t necessary, really. Thank you dear.

I slept great and in the morning we all get ready to leave. Lisa has to be to work easily so is out the door first but not before more hugs all around.

A little bit later she opens the door downstairs and hollers something like John get down here and her voice said something was wrong. John heads down first and I finish putting my socks on and follow.

Lisa was so distressed and upset. I told her it’s just a bike, it’s just stuff don’t worry about. I’m not sure what happened but I think it had something to do with getting it off the center stand. No biggy. t wasn’t the first time my bike had been on its side and certainly wouldn’t be the last.

John and I pick it up my bike and move it out of the garage then address Lisa’s bike.

After she was calmer and with time pressing she heads off to work.

John and I talk for a while but I have to make mileage so one last hug and I’m gone.

As I ride off I concentrate etching the memory of their laughter and voices in my mind.

Never forget, always never forget.
(I did this with everyone I met on this trip, even Mr Bojangles)
Nana korobi ya oki

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who matter don't mind and those who mind don't matter "- Dr Seuss
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:39 AM   #27
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Location: N. California, Delta Territory
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All I wanna do is be more like me and less like you.
Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain, and most fools do.- Benjamin Franklin
Originally Posted by summerinmaine View Post
Mocking nitwits IS an intelligent contribution.
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Old 08-25-2011, 12:56 PM   #28
Johnny Dakar
Fuckin' Smartass
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Location: Just 3 Short Miles North of Baja
Oddometer: 14,170
Poor Lisa...she was so distraught... I always park on that side of the garage, and it's a bit tricky squeezing between the wall and your bike.

It's all good though. She already has a new windscreen she found in the Flea Market. No harm no foul.

I'll remember that morning for a long time too, Gwen. Great to hug ya again.
"Just sharing this quiet time is intimate, our tent, our bikes and our faces illuminated by yellow light from the fire. This is why we travel. To experience those rare moments of perfection of solitude of life."
-Simon Thomas
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Old 08-25-2011, 01:34 PM   #29
500,000 miles so far
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Gilbert, AZ
Oddometer: 34
Hey Shoganai! I've been waiting for this RR... Great photos! I'm very honored to have been able to meet you and sign your witness form. And if you're ever near my home here in AZ, you and Steve always have a place to stay!

See ya down the road.

We have enough youth... What we need is a fountain of SMART!
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Old 08-25-2011, 01:44 PM   #30
Where fun goes to die....
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Location: Glendora, Ca
Oddometer: 4,000
Yeah great report now where is the rest of it, git on it already...

This was the loop I did just a week after you passed through the neighborhood, would have been fun to ride with you north.
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