Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Off to Clinton on the Bike

For you folks suggesting that I go full Hells Angel, I did regrow the gotee when we went back out to Arizona....   I usually don't have it when we are here in Kansas, and I did shave it off when we came back this spring....

But, when we came back in August, I haven't shaved it yet.....  And now with only a few weeks left until we go back it seems pointless, so it is here to stay for this winter....

In the spring, I usually shave after I get the taxes filed for the year...  Not that they have anything to do with each other...

When I was cleaned up this morning and ready to go, I came to the kitchen and found that the thermometer did read 49 F...  That's only 9 C and of course that sounds more ominous....

I put the liner into my riding pants, to match the coat where it was already installed...  Then I put on those white boot socks that I hate wearing, and some tie up Merrill shoes....   Ya, no Teva's at that cold temp...

And just for good measure, I put a sweatshirt over my T shirt before the coat...  Then riding  gloves for my hands....  Now this sounds like overkill for 50 degrees doesn't it?

But really it wasn't a bit...  It takes about 10 miles thru the city streets to get over into Missouri where the highway begins, so you can go South toward Truman Lake....   (Truman Lake empties into Lake Ozark)..

Once I was doing 65 or so, my fingers began to be cold and numb, and I could feel the air above my socks under three layers of pants...  I had the full face helmet on which protects the head, but around your neck it gets cold...  I zipped up completely with the liner zipper and velcro, and then the coat zipper...

But as it became 9 AM and later, it began to warm up a little and the sun was bright...  Not a cloud in the sky and the traffic wasn't particularly heavy..  Its a  four lane divided highway, and I settled in behind a bigger truck that wasn't going 75...  It was actually quite nice...  You feel very free and unencumbered as you ride, as though you have no where to be and not a care in the world..  Its hard to explain..

It took exactly an hour and a half to do the 70 miles with the first part being slow in town..  After reaching the town of Clinton, I found the turn off on Business 13 and the restaurant was fairly busy with town folks...  There was also about 12 bikes in a row on the North parking lot...  I found a spot in the middle and shut it down..

On the inside of this restaurant that used to be a  Kentucky Fried Chicken, it was busy busy..  The outside was still painted with the red and white striped logo but the signs said Lesia's.

Our group had a bunch of tables pushed together up in the front windows, but that turned out to be the smoking section...   None of us were smoking but as the morning progressed, the town folks took some of the other chairs. They lit right up....  Cough cough, hack.... eventually we ended up outside standing around the bikes talking in the fresh air....  Many remarks were made about how folks can afford to smoke any more.....

The club is having a rendezvous down in the Ozark hills of Arkansas tonight and tomorrow returning on Thursday...   They will have a banquet and then ride the mountains all day. There will be a second group dinner again tomorrow night...

On Thursday they will head home in small groups, terrorizing car drivers on the highway as they zoom around them at copious amounts of speed...   Hells retired angels.... LOL

The motel has 50 rooms and is out in the middle of nowhere..  It was totally booked by our group.  Usually with two men or a couple in each room.  Many of the bikes are big touring style Hondas or Harleys with both the man and wife aboard..

For myself, I don't make much of a room mate after cancer, with my disabilities, so rising at the crack of dawn and being ready to ride in ten minutes isn't going to happen.   And since I am fairly new with these folks, I just hung back this year..   I couldn't and wouldn't hold up a group of 75 people..

So as they all headed on South, I returned with a few other stragglers to the KC area...  It made for 145 miles of nice riding as I arrived back home at about 2:30..  It never did get warm enough for me to dress down any of the layers of clothes.    When I stopped though, the heavy jacket had to come right off as the sun was making it a nice day...

Loyce was off with our DIL for a Chinese Buffet luncheon while I was doing my motorcycle thing, so she had a nice time as well.....  Another luncheon week ride in the books!

Retired Rod


  1. That feeling of freedom on a bike is indeed hard to explain. I'm not even a biker, but I do "get it". Got friends and relations with bikes etc.
    The whole smoking thing reminds me of a time my wife and I were in Columbia S.C. and thought we'd grab some breakfast before heading to the airport. Somewhere along the way we thought we'd stop in at a restaurant, and only made it to the front entrance before we realised the place was just too smoky. It stunk. Gah!
    After I closed the door to the car, I looked up to see the manager following us out(kinda strange I thought) and he wanted to know if there was a problem.
    I explained that we didn't smoke and that it was too smoky.....
    So he tried to tell me that they had a "no smoking section". Well, I pointed out to him that "the smoke doesn't know" that.
    I don't think I actually said, "you're restaurant stinks", but I guess I might have got a little snippy, and my wife thought I was being mean, but he asked!
    You know, I really only wanted to have a cup of coffee and maybe some toast, so this guy standing at my window was starting to push his luck?
    The whole place stunk. We didn't want to eat there. I'm a little "gaggy" in the morning as it is? So, please don't blow smoke at me.
    There was a lot of bitching and complaining when the word came down in our local area (and farther afield too, but I'll only speak of what I know) when there was to be no more smoking in restaurants. But business didn't suffer, like they all said it would, if anything, business picked up, since now everyone could go and eat without smelling like an ashtray afterwards.

  2. I love, love, love the fact that there is no smoking in any of the buildings here and in Montana. Well except the Elks club. Since it's private they can smoke and it smells so bad the only time Jim and I go in there is to renew our membership. I think next year you need to give the over night trip a try. It's not like these are all young guys with no problems. A goatee! Not sure I'll recognize you when you get here.

  3. I'm always impressed with all the bike riding you do, Rod. It's a great way to get around and it sure does mean freedom. I know the feeling as I had a motorcycle for a few years when I was younger. I gave it up because I was leery of getting hit by some idiot in a car or truck - you know how that goes. Just stay safe and be careful on that thing, o.k. but enjoy it all the same as I know you do.

  4. I wondered where all the smokers went when they gave them the bum's rush here in Alberta. That said I know it did affect the bars for a while, but I think they have recovered now.


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