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The Return of the Night Rider

The summer solstice came floating in on the breeze Friday night. The weather was cool. So much so that I wished I had a sweatshirt with me as my daughter Chloe and I watched the late sunset tiptoe over the water and on past the edge of the tree line.

Following the longest day of the year came summer, all at once. We moved from sweatshirt-cool in the evening to hot and humid with the ever-present threat of a  rainstorm. Big blocky thunderheads have muscled their way into the skies in the late afternoons but haven’t done much other than look threatening.

On Monday evening the air was sticky. As the hour hand swept closer to the 9 on the clock, a light breeze finally began to blow. With the sun tucked in for the night and the air finally starting to cool it seemed the perfect time for a night ride.

I don’t pleasure ride after dark very often. They’re usually just around-town affairs or point to point trips. But sometimes? Sometimes you just need a little something to get a fix. With the heat of summer here to stay, so too comes the return of the night rider.

As short as my night rides often are, they are awfully sweet. There is a sense of stillness and solitude that I don’t often find during the day when the world is in the grips of it’s hustle and bustle.

Familiar places look different out of the burn of the sun. Shadows and soft light cover everything. And the Ural? It sure makes it easy to slow things down, to relax and savor the night sky.

Summer night riding… <3

Life in the Slow Lane: Uraling Through Long Island’s Farms

If you aren’t familiar with Long Island you might be surprised to find that the eastern end has lots of farms and wineries dotting the landscape. Often during our rides we find ourselves pulled off on the side of the road, peering over a split rail fence at horses or stopping at a farm that has animals in pens or corrals.

One of my favorite stops is Briermier Farms to get a homemade pie to bring home.  Mmm… strawberry rhubaaaaarb. Pies fit perfectly in the trunk of the Ural and actually make it home in one piece. Tres handy! 

The Ural makes pulling on to any manner of shoulder – grassy, bumpy, muddy so easy I feel spoiled by it. It makes u-turning a speedy breeze, too. You know – for emergency situations like spotting a pen full of teeny goats just dying to be scratched. Or fed phone books and tin cans. I’m pretty sure they’ll take either.

Though Chloe was completely in love with the little goats and a lamb, the itty-bitty calfs stole my heart.

They stole my heart …and tried to steal the snaps off of Chloe’s jacket.

I kid you not – some lady walking behind us said to her kid, “Oh, look at the cute little deers!” Poor kid.

In keeping with the horse’s ass theme – I leave you with this little guy’s sweet patoot. His name is Timmy. I kept trying to talk to him and get him to raise his face to the camera but he wouldn’t look up and didn’t say much, he was… a little… horse.

Thank you, thank you! I’ll be here all week.

The Ural Yamal Has Nothin’ On These Jaws!

The Motorcycle Key to My Success

Why is it that when I am riding my motorcycle – everything, all of my hopes and dreams, the direction I want to go in my life – those things are all crystal clear? When I’m riding my bike I’m a genius. No, make that a SUPER genius. A super genius with finely polished nails and skin that glimmers with pixie dust.  And when I smile? You actually hear the sound of a bell go *ting*.

Then I turn the key off and poof I’m a listless idiot sans sparkle again. Zero. Point. Zero.

I think I just need to keep on riding. And riding. And riding…

Long Island Santa Ride 2012

Is this thing on? How’s my beard?

Have I told you lately that I have the most awesome friends in the world?

On Sunday said awesome friends and I donned our big red and elfin suits and hit the road on our motorcycles to spread a little Christmas cheer.

I was tickled pink to have our group grow a little from last year.

Though one of my favorite-est Santas wasn’t able to make the ride this year ~ our dear friend Bill rode along with us in spirit.

It is really pretty amazing just how happy people are to see a group of moto Santas. Everywhere you turn people are honking, waving, taking pictures with their cellphones… it’s so fun :)

We even made the local Patch.com site after we cruised into the town of Port Jefferson, where the annual Charles Dickens Festival was happening.

image from portjefferson.patch.com
image from portjefferson.patch.com

Monetizing Christmas? Who needs it? I’m happy to report that we received many, many gifts in the form of smiles, honks and waves from the people around town. That, my friends – is worth its weight in gold.

I love Christmas time :)

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