Friday, July 31, 2015

Traveling to Moncton.....Part 2

Leaving Danville, IL to head east.  Riding through Indiana it was a little chilly and the roads definitely leave something to be desired.  We will beat feet to make up for a wasted day yesterday.  One night spend in Macedonia, OH.  Up and off early again the next day.  Nothing terribly interesting happening on the road.

We rode the NY turnpike end to end, at one of the rest areas we stopped at there was a European lady who was so excited to see us.  Who knows why?  She had to have her picture taken with us and the bikes.  We smiled and posed for pictures with her despite our urgent need to tend to bodily functions.  Watertown was our stopping point for the night.

Traveling through the Adirondacks was beautiful.  So green and lush, especially to us desert folks.  We stopped to take a few pictures and enjoy the scenery.  That is where we found this little park with a small river running nearby.

The roads through the Adirondacks were pretty good as far as the quality.  The view from some of the mountains as we crested them was breath taking.  Sadly, I forgot my camera at home so there are no pictures on the road, only those taken while stopped.  The air was so fresh, you can smell the pine in the air.  We saw some original Adirondack chairs and other furniture.  In general, it was just a really great ride.

Our goal for the day is Warren, VT, home of our friends Audrey and Jack Mosley.  Getting to Warren was a bit of a challenge due to the conditions of the roads.  There were a number of potholes and frost heaves throughout the winding road that lead us to Warren.  Upon our arrival we were greeted with a closed road that we needed to travel.  It seems that Warren is one of the top 10 places to be on the 4th of July, as a result the town was swarming with tourist and the parade had recently ended.  A kind police officer has pity on us and told us how we could get around the block party going on so we could continue to our friends' house.

Jack & Audrey live in this darling old home with the Mad River running through their backyard.  The house has some lovely little quirks, like some very steep stairs, old fashion fixtures and uniquely shaped rooms.  Jack & Audrey have added to their and it is a sunny yellow, representative of Audrey's personality.  There is a quaint covered bridge practically right next door and the view from the back deck is beautiful and peaceful.

In Warren, our friend Audrey is affectionately known as "the bird lady" because she rescues injured birds, nurses them back to health then releases them back into the wild.  While we were there she was preparing to release a little robin she had been caring for.  It was a lovely place to have a slight break in the trip since we stopped early and left late the next day.

The following morning we bid farewell to Jack & Audrey, who thankfully gave us a better route out of Warren then the way we came in.  We were on our way to Bangor, ME.

Unfortunately while in Bangor we didn't see any fog, clowns, people with strings attached to their heads, old diners with portals to another time or Stephen King.

Next time.....join us while we cross the border and head to Moncton.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Traveling to Moncton

Each time we leave for the Motor Maid convention I swear I am going to do better about blogging during the trip and each year I fail.  So once again, here I am writing about it after the fact.

We left home the morning of June 27 taking US 60 through Globe, Show Low and Pietown.  It was definitely cooler.  However north of Show Low the rain started, not heavy but steady.  By the time we reached Pietown with the combination of rain, altitude and wind it had gotten a bit chilly.  When we stopped to put on more layers there was hail on the ground, so we were lucky to have missed that part of the storm.

Our first couple of days on the road were a bit frustrating for a couple of reasons.  The week before we left I had picked up my bike from the dealer where it had an oil change and work done on the CB which has been giving me problems from the time it was installed.  A couple of days before we left we checked the radio to confirm it was working properly.  It wasn't.  I could hear Debbie talking to me but she couldn't hear me.  Of course there was no time to go back to the dealer, who when I picked up the bike and my helmet which they had requested for testing purposes, assured me that the radio was working fine.

When we were testing the radio I noticed large scratched area on the back of the helmet that weren't there before.  If the radio is fine, then the problem must be in the helmet, right?  And since it had been damaged that didn't seem to far a stretch.  In the meantime we decided that since I could hear Debbie and she could hear my mic when keyed that we would use that as a form of communication. Debbie would ask me questions and I would key the mic, twice for yes, once for no.

Our first night was spent in Mountainair, NM, We stayed as a little motel called the Rock Motel. The motel was comfortable and the owners were very friendly and accommodating. I did think the rates were a tad high.  Dinner was at Jerry's Ancient Cities Cafe where they have some rocking green chili. The clouds were starting to build up for a major rain storm, so we covered up the bikes and called it a night.

While I was getting ready for bed that night I confused some new medication and instead of taking my evening meds I took my daytime meds - triple the dose!!  Of course, I didn't realize it until the next night.  As a result of the mix up, I got next to no sleep that night and was dragging the following day. Thankfully, that was the only side effect.

We made it to Minneola, KS where we stayed at the Super 54 Inn.   It is a tiny little motel that could be better.  We were hot and tired so I asked the person who checked us in to put us in the room with the best AC. Unfortunately, if our room had the best AC I hate to think what the worst one was like. I get it though, these places mainly have traffic during the winter season.  Outside of the AC the room was comfortable, clean and tiny, so no major complaints with that.  Dinner was across the street at a little place where I had the best quesadilla I have ever had.  It wasn't traditional style but it was very tasty.

Up and out early in the morning. headed to Omaha, NE where we will have dinner with Debbie's boss and a co-worker.  Along the way we stopped in Kinsley, KS, which happens to be the halfway between San Francisco and New York City as well as home to a boat load of gnats.

Arrived in Omaha earlier than expected which gave us time to get cleaned up before dinner.  Had a nice dinner and then an early night.

Finally, having had enough of being unable to  communicate, we decide to detour a little bit to Litchfield, IL where the nearest authorized J&M installer is located.  Char at Niehaus Cycles was a huge help.  I spoke with her on the phone several times to troubleshoot what may be wrong with my headset.  When I was unsuccessful with the various suggestions Char offered, we spent the night in Litchfield, so we could be at Niehaus when they opened in the morning.

One new helmet and headset later and I am still unheard. We backtracked to Springfield to visit Hall's Harley Davidson where they locate the crimped wire that is causing the problem and we are off again.  The day was pretty much a waste between running around for the helmet, Debbie's battery, then the back to Springfield so we didn't get many miles.  We'll start again in the morning.

To be continued.