Tag: bbbc

Riding a Motorcycle Through the Big Wide World

Riding a Motorcycle Through the Big Wide World

Riding across the Mojave from Twentynine Palms on my way to Amboy, California was something of a spiritual experience. Seeing an ocean of sand spill out before me with dappled light spread across the expanse… it is a moment I will never forget. I had many such moments in different desert landscapes around California.

If you asked 21-year-old me what type of riding I would like to do forever and ever and ever – the answer surely would’ve have been twisty mountain roads as fast as I possibly could.

Here I am now in my 40’s smiling back at that narrowminded girl. Such a simple and predictable answer. An answer from a version of me that did not understand the beauty of serenity and solitude. That is what these wide open spaces provide.

On the surface, you might look at the photos and think “boring ride!” But I assure you, nothing could have been further from the truth.

Being in a tremendous expanse gives the mind room to roam unfettered and free.


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt: Open concept or rooms with walls

Two KTMs and the Grand Canyon

Two KTMs and the Grand Canyon

“Babe. Chris asked me to go do that Grand Canyon dirtbike thing with him.”
“Okay. You should do it! When is it?”
“Tuesday.”
“Oh.”
“We’re driving out.”
“Really?”
…..

And just like that, with a few days notice my husband Kenny loaded two dirtbikes in the back of his pickup and drove from Long Island to the edge of California. See? I’m not the only one around here who impulsively heads off galavanting.

In two days time, Kenny and his friend Chris were in Moab, Utah where they spent a day riding. The following morning, they reloaded their bikes in the truck and were off to Primm, Nevada. That’s where they ditched the truck and set off across the desert to Bar 10 Ranch to begin the Grand Canyon leg of their trip.

The pictures Kenny sent of the rugged desolation were so beautiful. Here are a few:


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt: Three pics you’ve never shared

Veggin’ Out with Art Cars and Roadside Attractions

Veggin’ Out with Art Cars and Roadside Attractions

When Kathy posted her list of February blogging prompts and I read “vegetable” as one of them? I thought that was rad. But not too rad. You know, radish.

Not really what I would cauliflower.

This post is pretty corny.

Lettuce move on and get back to motorcycles.


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt: Vegetable

Fuzzygalore.com – A Motorcycle Blog For Weirdos

Fuzzygalore.com – A Motorcycle Blog For Weirdos

Writing my blog has been an on-going learning experience. Like me, what I write about has evolved over time. People who read it back in the stone age might not like what it has become but that’s alright. In a roundabout way, yes, it is about motorcycles. Sort of. More than just posts about riding from A to B, specs, farkles and so on – this is a chronicle of my brain’s inner monologue. As it turns out, my uncluttered thoughts are best tapped in to when I am riding my motorcycle.

Whenever I write about my flaws, my strangeness, the things that hurt or embarrass me – invariably there is someone who reads it, reaches out and says, “me too.” Now, of course I realize that my feelings about things aren’t unique. But even so – I am often surprised by this me too-ness. Are we all riding around carrying bags full of insecurities, anxieties and hurts? Do we all just want someone to get us?

It’s has been a difficult lesson to learn that it is my fragile humanity that connects me to other people. A false projection of perfection might get lookers through the door but I’m not interested in just numbers or stats. I’m interested in learning to be a better human from the people who stop by and have their own stories to share.


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt: A hard lesson you’ve learned

Coming to Terms With Long Highway Rides

Coming to Terms With Long Highway Rides

When the calendar page rolls from December in to January, there is a sparkle of wonder about what the year will bring. With motorcycling being such an important part of my life, where I will go and what I will see is in the forefront of my imaginings.

Beyond daydreaming about where I’ll find myself, my mind also floats back to all the places I’ve been. Sometimes it isn’t until the onset of one of these nostalgia trips that I realize how much I’ve seen. While you’re in the midst of doing things – that’s just your life. That moment is your existence and often doesn’t feel out of the ordinary. I suppose that can make it easy to overlook the magnitude of some things and maybe keeps you from being overwhelmed.

Though I sometimes gobble up the miles in order to stand in front of something, I never see the miles themselves as a trophy. Sometimes I’ll get a bug in my ear about visiting something but hundreds of miles stand between us. Even though it means I’ll be going riding, pounding out the miles on the slab can be a drag.

Over the years I’ve found space inside of myself to mostly come to terms with long highway stretches. But there are moments when I teeter on the edge of a complete f’n meltdown because I just don’t feel like doing it. It is in those moments that I have to dig deep to find the power to continue. Those are the moments when I have to remember why I’m doing what I’m doing. There is something waiting for me on the other side, something I have to suffer to get to… something that will be worth the squirming discomfort.

Thinking ahead to the year that is unfolding, my mileage goal is the same as the last 20 or so: to ride some, to be safe and have a good time.


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt: Annual Mileage Goal

Motorcycle Travel Packing – Some Odds and Ends

Motorcycle Travel Packing – Some Odds and Ends

When I’m roadtripping on the bike, I do my best to pack lightly with regard to clothing. I try to pack things that are easily re-wearable, wrinkle resistant and fast drying. Fast drying is a huge help. That means I can wash them when I stop for the night and they’re dry by morning. And that means less stuff to pack.

My clothing basics usually include:

  • Wicking base layer – top & bottom
  • 3 pairs of underwear – 2 bras
  • packet of ankle socks
  • Off-bike jacket or cardigan – depending on the weather
  • Sometimes a travel dress
  • 1 pair of off-bike jeans or pants
  • 1 pair of shoes
  • A couple T-shirts for on/off the bike

The key for me seems to be versatility. Picking clothes that I can comfortably use on the bike and still not look like a total hobo if I go to a restaurant. Also as you can see, I like black and grey. Sometimes I’ll also pack a scarf. They can smarten up a plain t-shirt or zip-up jacket when off the bike. Oh, and earrings. I feel like that’s something that helps me not feel so boyish.

Gallon Ziploc bags are my best friend. They keep stuff tidy and make for easy packing. Keeping like items together keeps me from having to rifle through everything to find something.

Some hotels have washing machines for guests, which is nice. That helps when your re-wearables have been re-worn many times. When you know you should be stinky but you cant smell yourself anymore? That’s when you’ve achieved a high-level of funk. Well done.

In my everyday life, I hate folding clothes out of the dryer and putting them away. My motorcycle packing is kind of the antidote to that. Roll it up and stick it in a bag. If you don’t have a lot, you don’t have to take care of a lot.

On the topic of motorcycle wash and wear – my friend Bill sent me this lastnight. Timely!


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt:Your least favorite household chore

Finding Forgiveness in the California Desert

Finding Forgiveness in the California Desert

It was cold when I left the town of Brawley. The sun was just starting to make its way up the eastern sky. The dusky morning blanketed the horizon in a gray-blue haze. The world was not awake yet.

With the sun rising at my back, I hummed west with farms keeping me company for a little while. They didn’t stick around long. Everything quickly turned to sand.

I was heading towards Ocotillo. That’s where I would head north and into Anza-Borrego State Park.

On this, the second morning of my California trip, I still had not yet decompressed and shed the go-go-go agitation that peppers everything I do. There was also the matter of lingering guilt about being selfish and traveling on my own. That all rounded out nicely with worrying about all of the other odds and ends that arise when traveling by motorcycle. Those negative feelings were seasoned to taste and put on a low heat to simmer.

I don’t take my personal freedom lightly. I have keen understanding of how lucky I am to pretty much do what I want, when I want to, without any grief from my family. But I still have a cooling down period that I go through in which I have to release myself from guilt. There are always episodes of inner turmoil that I go through when traveling on my own.

As I rode along, I worked through feelings of awe from the desolate landscape and the nagging of my inner tumult. Just a few miles in to the park everything I’d been feeling came to a head. With the way that the morning light hugged the land, the gorgeous colors of the terrain, the scale of the mountains and dipping valleys – my simmering pot boiled over. I stood on the side of the road taking everything in and I cried.

But it wasn’t a sad cry. It was something else. A release. Being in that beautiful desert space told me that right then, right at that very moment – I could forgive myself. I was exactly where I needed to be and it was okay.


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt:A special memory from 2016

Planting Road Trip Ideas for 2017

Planting Road Trip Ideas for 2017

In 2016, I was able to chase down several tickling daydreams that ran loose in my mind. Little did I know when the calendar turned over that not only would I see the Blue Whale of Catoosa in Oklahoma but that I would also find myself in awe at the base of Salvation Mountain in California.

The machinations that are at work in our subconscious are mysterious. You think you’re just trying to survive the commute to work but, no – you’re actually planting idea seeds for a road trip to far away places.

I go through periods of time where the same ideas will return to me many times. They’re signaling that they need attention, I guess. These ideas become regulars at the bar in my mind. “Oh, hey, West Quoddy Head Lighthouse. Good to see you still coming around.” That’s one that keeps bugging me. “Hi Pedro. Cerveza? Haven’t been to South of the Border since I was a kid!” That’s another. Two rather different stops, rather far from one another.

If I had to choose just one of those two places to visit this year, I think that the trip to Maine would win out. I don’t have a concrete reason – just a gut feeling. Part of the daydreaming of visiting a place always has the peripheral stuff you see along the way to get there. I see green in my mind when I think of going to Maine and gray on the way to South of the Border. Abstract perceptions that don’t mean anything. Or do they?

With my whims being as mercurial as they are – who knows? Perhaps I’ll see neither of those two places and will see a million others instead. As long as I visit the state of bliss, it’s all good.

 


This post is part of a month-long writing prompt challenge: Brave, Bold, Blogger Challenge (BBBC) 2017 hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com.

Prompt: State You Most Hope to Visit This Year

Napoleon Fruit Soup, A Ghost Ad and Morning on a Motorcycle

Napoleon Fruit Soup, A Ghost Ad and Morning on a Motorcycle

When I left my hotel in Napoleon, Ohio headed east towards home I didn’t really have much of a plan other than go towards where the sun was coming up. I picked up US 6 because it was familiar. Actually, I could follow it almost all the way home if I’d wanted to.

With a quick u-turn to get a better look at a ghost ad I spotted in an alley, I parked on the main drag in Napoleon. A Gold Medal Flour and 7-Up two-fer!

While there, some creeps watched me take pictures.

Before riding away, I pulled up a listing of Roadside America favorites on my GPS to see if there was anything interesting nearby. Huh, a giant can of soup

And so it was I found myself on the side of the road watching a huge can of tomato soup basking in a glorious sunrise. Life is nothing if not mysterious.

Since a tomato is technically a fruit, the big soup can seemed perfect for today:

This post is part of a 29 posts in 29 days blogging challenge hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com. Today’s writing prompt: Fruit
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