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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Anglefire to Burlington--Lunch and Finally!

It's always a sad moment when we cross the state line out of New Mexico. The fine officers of the New Mexico state police escort the riders and do an excellent job of doing so!! My hat is off to them and I appreciate their time and efforts!

Of course, crossing into Colorado means several things. Mainly, the ever loving construction in the Trinidad that seems to be a forever project, wind and more importantly, HOME!!! I smile at the thought that I will be sleeping in my own bed soon.

For this leg, I am somewhere in the back. It's not really a problem. I'm okay where ever I line up--although I prefer up front--I can deal with whatever I get. I just want to make sure I survive the construction and then enjoy the ride up Hwy 350.

The ride was uneventful--there's not much exciting going on. To alleviate the boredom of just cruising down the highway, I dig a lollypop out of my windshield bag. Don't get me wrong, it is not boring to cruise down the highway--rather, with the rider in front of me and the one beside me and the majority of my attention is spent not running into either one or off the side of the road, there is just not a great deal of attention that can be spent in sightseeing.

So I pull out a lollypop and occupy myself. This is a pretty handy "trick". Keeping your mouth busy is just enough to occupy my brain so I subconsciously think it's not a good time to take a nap. Sometimes I sing, sometimes I chew gum--you know pretty simple stuff.

I suppose I could eat a sandwich too, but that's a bit more challenge than I need while riding at highway speed in a group. Not to mention that I'd more than likely get mustard on my leathers!

We all make it to La Junta, fuel stop and pull in the line up and take a break for lunch.

Lunch is fun--I grab my grub and sit at a table. I know no one. So, just start chatting and making new friends. It's always interesting to find out what people do for a living and why they are on the ride.

Oh, and the ever-important potty break.

Lunch is over and the call to line up is sounded. I get my stuff together and get on the bike. Anyone that rides with me knows it is quite the "chore" to get ready. Not only is it getting "standard" riding gear on--gloves, helmet, etc and making sure my saddlebags are secure, etc. I also have to get my iPod tuned in, put on lip balm, make sure I have more lollys.

Someone yells "5 minutes". I am ready. I know better to putz around--they pull out whether I'm ready or not.

This time, I'm in the very back of the group. The sweep is riding behind me.

Goldwing no where to be found. One of my friends looks at me and asks--"what do I do"? My response--go around the bike let him be.

I'm thinking that this could possibly not happen. I mean, he was warned and there are always announcements at the morning meeting about being prepared.

Oh wait, did he miss that one?? LOL!! Well, even if he did, Angelfire wasn't the first stop and that wasn't his first morning meeting. Or maybe he's missed them all...who knows.

Motorcycle fired up and still no Goldwing Guy. Signal to pull out is given.

At that point he runs up. We are all pulling out. He has to put all his gear on and get ready. Bikes are pulling out around him and I watch him frantically trying to get ready. My turn to go comes and I pull out and note that he still has quite a bit of gear to put on.

Note that there is another platoon behind me. Yes, they are going around him too.

I turn my attention to making the corner and my last thought of Goldwind Guy was "too bad".

He can ride in the back and get back into the group at the next stop.

LOL.....fat chance.

Till next time....

~The Rainbow Wahine

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Anglefire to Burlington...Raton Stop

Like I said, the ride to Raton was uneventful. Waiting in line for fuel, I was trying to warm up. Think coffee, think coffee, think coffee.

And to use the ladies room! Fueled up, I'm back in line and headed to the facilities.

For once, the line to the men's room is a mile long and I was able to walk into the ladies room! LOL. Funny what things amuse me, huh??

Business all done, I grab a hot chocolate instead and a few snacks and head back to the bike.

I chat with a few of my friends. Some I know outside the run...some are newly minted. I have a guy tell me he'd ride behind me anytime! How funny! He's a FNG and fully enjoying the ride and already talking about next year and wanting to be on something else bigger. Not that he's on a "tiny" bike by any means--he's on a Virago 750--large enough to go the distance.

I decide to walk the line and check out the motorcycles. Goldwing, Victory, Harley, Kawasakis...and then I stop. BMW.

I've never really been a fan of BMW styling--for one most are too tall for me to ride. However, this motorcycle is another story. Enter the K1200LT. What a cool motorcycle!! And a touring bike to boot.

I've been pondering a new touring bike. My son is getting old enough to ride along and has started showing interest. He was hooked after one of my friends took him on a short ride on his Ultra Classic CVO. I wasn't sure I wanted to go the Harley route any longer, so I am keeping an open mind on all manufacturers.

I admire the bike and think that it is probably like any other BMW--too tall.

Checking time, I head back to the motorcycle. Gear on, start up and off we go.

Next stop is La Junta--fuel and lunch.

I say a short prayer for everyone to arrive safely.

Turn on the concentration and pull out.

Keep the shiny side up~

~The Rainbow Wahine

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Angelfire to Burlington....errrr....Raton

Sigh, my last post was in awful is that? Well, it's October, so not too good. I've neglected this blog for entirely too long.

It's early in the morning to be riding. Especially in Angelfire, NM!! COLD is definitely the word! Same routine as yesterday...up, shower, dress, put on sunscreen, makeup, pack, load up the bike, line up.

Put on makeup, really? Yes, Virginia, we do put on makeup. It's not a vanity thing, I promise (well, maybe a little)! Believe it or not, makeup does provide a physical barrier for my face! There have been many journeys that I have ridden with my friends and they come back with the reverse raccoon face...and very rarely do I have that problem.

Makeup. Now you know. Seriously, it's not about vanity. Ride a couple hundred miles and emerge wind blown all covered with bugs and road grime. Not a pretty picture.

This PSA has been brought to you by ~smile~.

I digress.

Ahem, I get my bike lined up and find my friends. I'm excited--it's a new day to ride. This leg is always 'fun'. One: it's a day on the bike. Two: TWISTYS. Three: RFTW. Four: No two up riding in the twisties.

Still, it's a challenge to not know the skill level of the people surrounding and ride with them. Also, even though the population of women riders increasing, there are still not a large quantity of women riders. I'm sure that had to give pause to some of the male riders in the group.

I did not worry long, as most of the folks more or less knew what they needed to do.

Except for Gold-Wing Guy.

It is a test of patience to deal with anyone that does not/can not get the concept of what the ride is all about. Who knows what the issue was. The Platoon Sergeant and team were wonderfully patient with this guy--and to help the group, he was assigned to me.

It's not too bad. I'm concentrating on the task at hand--doing my part in getting the group to the next stop safely. The first order of the day: attend the morning meeting.

First bobo action by Gold-Wing Guy....miss the 90% of the morning meeting.

Not that I haven't heard the safety drill, but the morning meeting is a connection of the entire group. We not only discuss safety, but talk about lessons learned from the prior day as well and hold a short Q&A session.

Gold-Wing Guy pulls up just in time for the Q&A...and basically decides to share his lessons learned. Except for the fact that everything that he's talking about has already been discussed. He would have known had he have been there, right?

He gets a talking to and is told that he will not be able to ride in the group if he misses another morning meeting. I hope he understands. I won't know if he succeeds or not--I won't be riding with the group tomorrow for Burlington is my last stop for The Run this year.

Meeting over, we mount up and head out.

The ride is quite enjoyable. We don't have the two up riding so I can relax a little and enjoy the process of riding.

Except for the cold. I think the temps were in the 30s that morning. Brrrrrr..

The ride was uneventful and we all made it up to Raton with no incident.

Not even Gold Wing Guy.

That's not the end of him, though.

Just wait.

Keep the Shiny Side Up

~The Rainbow Wahine