ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-15-2008, 03:28 PM   #1
RMac OP
Cheese!
 
RMac's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Stumptown
Oddometer: 1,797
Momma Mac's Last Ride

September 9, 2008

She never liked motorcycles, vowed she’d never allow me to ride one. Her cousin had been killed back in the 30’s flat track racing and she had never forgiven the machines. Still after persistent whining I finally wore her and Dad down. One night he just said, “aw hell, it’s his life, his money, let him buy the damned motorcycle”. So she found herself one day following me back home after taking me to pick up my first bike, a used and soon to be abused Honda Trail 90.

Years later she confessed to me, that watching me fly down that road she could see the freedom the machine represented, she could see the joy that I felt. And she somehow got it.

Over the years I’d joke with her about taking her for a ride on whatever bike I had at the time, or even letting her ride it herself. This went on into her later years, these past few when she lived next door to my family here in Portland.

She’d lived in my childhood home for 25 years by herself after my father died in ’78. Never letting the loneliness or the fears get to her, she held onto her fierce independence as long as she could.

One evening over the phone she mentioned to my wife she was considering moving into an assisted living apartment. I made some calls, the planets aligned, circumstances made it possible and soon she had condensed her life’s possessions into a Mayflower truck and moved 2500 miles away to live next door to her youngest son, his wife and her two granddaughters. She had given up her home in Arkansas and all of her independence, finally recognizing she needed some help.

Now, almost four years later I’m taking her home, on the bike. She wouldn’t say no this time.

So on a warm mid September morning I walked my youngest daughter to her 2nd grade class, gave her a hard lingering hug and tearily kissed her bye. She’s used to me sometimes going out of town for work, but never for this long. I’ll be gone at least three weeks, I think, for this trip. I’ll miss her and her big sister and her Mother terribly.

Normally on the advent of a motorcycle trip I’m giddy and buzzing with excitement. This time was different. I found myself nearly overcome with a sense of foreboding and ennui as this ride represented the end of something beautiful, rather than the beginning.

I left town by way of I-84 headed east. Let me say here I hate freeways when traveling by motorcycle. I rarely use them, preferring smaller two lane routes. It’s hard to have fun when you’re battling trucks and cages for space. Food along freeway’s suck, just the same old corporate franchised frankenfood product.

But this morning I opted to make some miles fast and I’d ridden all the good routes east plenty of times. There was a very long way to go so it made sense at the time.

I-84




A hundred miles in and I changed my mind. A type A asshole in a Subaru w/ one of those 5thousand dollar bicycles on the roof tried to cut me off and gave me the finger for no reason I can figure other than he was in a Subaru, his life sucked and I’m on a motorcycle. So I diverted to a more scenic two lane that parallels the freeway, then cross the Columbia at The Dalles and take two lane WA14. I make a mental note to never ride a motorcycle on a freeway again if I can find an alternative.

A more scenic alternative route, The Historic Columbia Highway near Rowena


WA-14 follows the Columbia and though I’ve ridden it lots and it’s littered with cops trying to bust me for speeding I still enjoy the expansive views of the great river. Eventually it ends and I crossed back over to take US730 – US12 through Walla Walla to Lewiston and the famous Lolo Pass route over to Missoula. I picked a perfect day for it, light traffic, warm air, no wind, incredible scenery. I passed a geezer riding one of those ridiculous Bombadier three wheelers going 35 through a 45mph turn. Sorry I just don’t get it, but he had a huge grin as I go by.

US 730 along the Columbia


I was in the flow and the flow was good. I took no photos, just was not in the mood. Hell everyone has seen the sign warning 77 miles of winding road. And though the sunlight was waning I passed offerings of riverside cabins and cold beer to keep riding, risking breaking my rule to not ride after dark. I crossed the pass at sunset and paused at the entrance to Lolo Hot Springs but decided the rooms would be overpriced and continued cautiously in near darkness, nervous of encounters with deer, moose or other animal hazards. About 15 or so miles from town I came upon a group of sportbikers helping one of their own who had crashed. “just lost his front end, thank goodness he was wearing gear”. No shit. Nothing I could offer in the way of help. Soon I was some 570 odd miles from home cruising through Missoula looking for a motel and food. Tomorrow would be a big day.
__________________
"it's easier than just waiting around to die"
Townes Van Zandt

RMac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2008, 03:31 PM   #2
GB
Mod Squad
 
GB's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2002
Location: Toronto, ON
Oddometer: 55,862
Excellent intro!!! Looking forward to seeing Momma's ride
__________________
ADV decals, patches & flag? Here
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2008, 08:16 PM   #3
RMac OP
Cheese!
 
RMac's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Stumptown
Oddometer: 1,797
Disclaimer

Disclaimer.

If a tree falls in the forest and no one writes about it on the internet does it make a sound?
Seems the days of just going for a ride are gone and we’re now in an age where every minute detail of one’s life must be blogged about. I debated whether to write about this trip. There is a concept called oversharing. This report may at times get dangerously close. Sorry for that.

The story won’t involve riding on untracked terrain in exotic locations. Only 30 or 40 miles off pavement out of 7350. Rarely out of cell phone range. Hardly an adventure (an overused word on this website). But it does involve a motorcycle, explorations, some nice roads and interesting characters. Guess I’ll overshare away.

It’s going to start slow. I didn’t make many photos in the beginning. It’ll get better. I hope.
__________________
"it's easier than just waiting around to die"
Townes Van Zandt

RMac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2008, 08:57 PM   #4
Loud Al
.
 
Loud Al's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Forest Grove, OR
Oddometer: 3,897
Go ahead and write what is in your heart, not all adventures are physical adventures. I for one am interested in what you have to say.
__________________
A Quick Trip to Big Sur


Allan
Loud Al is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 01:07 AM   #5
Uglyprimate
UglyPirate
 
Uglyprimate's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Location: Fort Whine Indiana
Oddometer: 6,944
Quote:
Originally Posted by RMac
Disclaimer.

I debated whether to write about this trip. There is a concept called oversharing. This report may at times get dangerously close.
It’s going to start slow. I didn’t make many photos in the beginning. It’ll get better. I hope.


Not all authors write for anyone's benefit but their own. Most great works are only great after the author is long gone.

You write for yourself first. It's your outlet for your emotions.

Tell this story to the same person(s) who went on that bike trip. Write about them, to them. From your words, we get to know them as well and for a brief reflection in time, we get to travel with you.
__________________
"Beauty sleep?" Bitch, you don't need a nap, you need to HIBERNATE!
Uglyprimate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 01:13 AM   #6
Klay
dreaming adventurer
 
Klay's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2005
Location: right here on my thermarest
Oddometer: 100,866
__________________
.



windigo
Klay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 01:55 AM   #7
olebiker
Old buzzard bait
 
olebiker's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Kingston ON Canada
Oddometer: 3,476
Yeah if you don't mind I think I'd like to ride along on this one.

Carl
olebiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:13 AM   #8
Mats
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Feb 2007
Location: Sweden
Oddometer: 259
Me too, please.
"explorations"- I liked that..

Cheers
Mats

Mats screwed with this post 10-16-2008 at 06:30 AM
Mats is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:29 AM   #9
The Full Monty
Adventurer
 
The Full Monty's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Clear Lake Shores, TX
Oddometer: 97
Not sure where we are headed, but I am with you on this journey.

mb
__________________
It is a lot easier to die, then it is to use your head. R.A. Heinlein

KLR650 '09
The Full Monty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:35 AM   #10
3Putt
Is that a gimmie?
 
3Putt's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2007
Location: Rockford, IL
Oddometer: 631
I'm hooked
__________________
Tom

2014 Super Tenere
3Putt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:37 AM   #11
barnyard
Verbal tactician
 
barnyard's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2007
Location: central Mn
Oddometer: 10,860
I have a real good idea where you are headed.

Thanks for sharing.

Tom B
__________________
all around good guy
barnyard is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:45 AM   #12
little foot
Scratch and Sniff
 
little foot's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: The Springs, Oklahoma
Oddometer: 5,920
You can't see me but I'm following real close. ENJOY !!!! the ride.
__________________
A little wear and tear is expected.
little foot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:46 AM   #13
beerjonny
Planning mode...
 
beerjonny's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Willow Grove, NB Canada
Oddometer: 231
In.
__________________
- I don't want a pickle, I just wanna ride on my motorsickle -
beerjonny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 06:51 AM   #14
papaduc
Gnarly Adventurer
 
papaduc's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2002
Location: Beaverton Oregon
Oddometer: 375
If you promise to stay off the freeways when possible, I will follow you on your journey to take your Mom home.



OK I'll follow even if you take the freeway.
__________________
PAPA duc
papaduc is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2008, 07:18 AM   #15
achesley
Old Motorcyclist
 
achesley's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2003
Location: Jennings, Louisiana
Oddometer: 3,428
Do your thing. We'll follow in spirit. Heck, I travel quite a bit and never do ride reports worth putting in print. Just notes in my book and a few pics for memories. Some times these reports are all pictures and no script, no plot.

Hang tuff
__________________

A '00 KLR 650 39,000 miles, A '07 1250S 77,000 actual, A '03 5.3L Chevy Truck 76,000 + '43 style dude , Simper Fi ;-)
achesley is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 08:02 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014