What’s that old saying? The worst day riding your bike is better than the best day at work? So rain isn’t such a big deal, eh? That’s what I thought when I looked outside this morning and saw the rain had arrived a day early. Bummer.
Last night I’d finished packing so this morning all I had to do was hose off, get into my big red costume, wolf down an omelet, snap the panniers and tank bag onto the bike, do a walk-around to see what parts were most likely to fall off and hit the road. Easy. Slick even.
For awhile I’d toyed with the idea of heading back to my beloved highway 66 but since I’d already done that twice recently I figured it was time for something new. Simple decision here, so I headed south down US101 to California, land of sunshine and very weird but altogether nice folks. People from Oregon think of our California cousins in that way so I may as well say it. Sorry Dennis, sorry Ron, sorry Betty, who am I leaving out?
.An interesting thing occurred today, I’d pulled off the road in Langlois (about 8 miles down the road from our place) to make some minor adjustment to my earplugs and when I left I noticed the 4-way flashers were on. Let me tell you, riding a bike in the rain and fiddling around with all the various switches can be a bit trying and eventually I was forced to pull over again. I spent one helluva lot of time trying to figure out where the damn switch was when it finally occurred to me the Aprilia doesn’t have 4way flashers…. What it does have boys and girls, is a freaking fancy alarm system that I personally installed and when one rides off without disabling it the lights flash and the alarm makes it’s shrieking howling noise. Note: Those of you who know me will probably have this figured out already. LL is deaf as a rock when it comes to high frequency howling noises. All of this may explain why several people grinned and even waved at me. Heck, I thought they were just intrigued with the hack, after all it’s pretty cool and you don’t see a lot of them around, right? I eventually figured it out. Now I’m wondering how many would-be bike thieves are hard of hearing? Or coppers?
Lunch was a brief visit to Burger King in I-don’t’-know-where-I’m-at, my most favorite burger joint in the entire galaxy. Outside there were 3 big shiny gorgeous Gold Wings…not sure how they spell that, a lot of people seem to call them GW’s. Anyway I sat down by them and listened to their plans for the next day or two. The lead guy had an incredible agenda laid out for them, like nearly turn to turn from one town to the next. Very detailed, very precise. This took a long time and I was impressed by the level of details he’d thought of. I think I’d like him to plan a trip for me some time; he was very, very precise. Around 15 minutes into our lunch one of his buds asked me where I was from and where I was headed. “You just out for a short ride?” he asked. I told him Bandon and naturally he thought I’d said Bend. No biggie, I’m used to that and couldn’t care less. But when I said I was on my way to Nova Scotia you could have heard a pin drop. In fact it looked like the lead guy might have ingested one of his onion rings for a moment. What followed amounted to a lot of male chest pounding and name/place dropping to which I was grateful for the Deadhorse Alaska stickers on the hack, they seemed to lend credibility to my story. Maybe I should add some more as I travel along? Anyway the guys left with lots of hand shaking and good luck wishes all around and I was glad I’d met them; they’re part of our biking community. Plus when they rode off I couldn’t help how all three of them really knew how to ride those monsters.
Moving right along, the rest of the ride to Eureka in the rain was about as exciting as one could expect, and much as I wanted to camp out I opted for my new most favorite home away from home, the local Quality Inn. Hey, it’s raining outside dammit and I’m an old guy who needs to be near an ice machine.
Tamale is another day…..
.PS - If you're wondering about the little green creature it's WhooHa, I picked her/him up in Whislter, Canada when Mac and I were on our way to Alaska last yeat. He/she was abannoned at a bench/rest stop and I adoped her/him. So...if you're the owner you're SOL. Sorry.