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Monday, February 23, 2009


I've been under the weather with a nasty cold and cough, so there was no riding for me this weekend. I had to reach into my archives for today's pic. Harley and his pals enjoyed a boys trip to Maine a couple summers ago took a ferry ride over Nova Scotia. They made a small loop in Canada around that area before coming back out. There are tons of good pics and stories to share of his ride that summer. We will have to work on a guest post to bring you some of the highlights. Until then, have a nice Monday everyone!

Lady R

Author's Note: Thank you Baron and Joker for voting me the "Fabulous Blog Award". I will address that honor this evening when I get home. :)

Friday, February 20, 2009


Dear Diary... a glimpse into the pages of a journal written by a woman rider.

February 19, 2009
Dear Diary,
I had a close call today, and it's been difficult for me to let it go. I'm sure it's bothering me cause it involved me, my car, and nice pretty Gold Wing!

I was moving through the Bank's parking lot when I noticed some motion out of the corner of my eye. As I looked to my left, peering over the rooftops of the other parked cars, I noticed the top halves of two helmets progressing to the end of their row, next to mine. I was about four car lengths from the end of my row when the two helmets, turned right, and then right again, toward me into the row I was in. The rider and his passenger were in full view by now, but the problem was, he made such a wide sweeping turn into the row I was coming out of, that within an instant he was right in front of me like he was playing chicken! Thankfully, I was only going, about 5 to 7 mph. and him, probably likewise. I hit my brake and stopped on a dime, but while I sat there with my mouth open, I watched his passenger grab his arms in fear, as he had to make a pretty radical swerve to the right back over to his side of the row to keep from hitting me head on! He mastered this maneuver successfully, but I could tell by the look on his face, he was pretty startled as well.

He just missed hitting the front of my car by a gnat's ass! I sat there for a moment trying to settle my adrenalin rush, as I realized everything was fine. I don't know why he wasn't looking where he was turning, but I would have felt terrible if we had made contact. Anytime a bike goes down, there's chance of injury. I know it wouldn't have been tragic, but it doesn't take much to screw up a knee or an ankle to make your riding days vanish. They looked to be in their 50's or so, probably a husband and wife out enjoying the world on two wheels just like I do.

I can't even imagine how horrible it would make me feel if I were ever a contributing factor to a motorcyclist getting hurt. I don't even want to go there! I've become a much better driver in my car, since I've started riding, and I chalk that up to becoming more tuned in to what's going on around me. I tell myself... this is a good thing.

I've always felt that drivers of cars, not paying attention to us bikers, is one of our biggest risks when we're out riding. But, today I was reminded that we can make some dumb ass moves ourselves and sometimes there's nothing the driver of the car can do to avoid us. If we let our guard down and lose focus, we make ourselves vulnerable. This guy wasn't looking where he was turning, and if I had been even a little closer to the end of the isle, I would not have been able to avoid hitting him head on.

I love riding my Glide and I accept the risks. I don't know why. Maybe it's because I know I try to ride smart, and it's worth the risk, in order to receive the immense pleasure I get in return. I just hope I never forget to ride smart. After that... I'll accept whatever happens.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Last weekend while Harley and I were puttin' around the Alabama highways, we found ourselves riding through Tallassee, Alabama. This little historic town is bordered on the east and west by two rivers... the Coosa and the Tallapoosa, and is home to a major hydroelectric power plant run by the Alabama Power Company. We actually ride through here a good bit and one of the coolest parts about it is the Fitzgerald Bridge, which crosses over the Tallapoosa River and the Thurlow Dam.
The biggest problem about riding across this bridge on your motorcycle, is trying to keep your eyes on the road! I am fascinated with the dam, the jagged rocks below and old historic looking buildings that are still standing around below the bridge. There's an old cotton mill that was built in 1844 and converted into an armory during the American Civil War. It's the only Confederate Armory that wasn't destroyed during the war, and it's pretty cool to look at it and imagine what life must have been like back then.

There's no place to stop on the bridge, but we parked at a Bank that's right on the river at the East end of the bridge to try and get some good pics.
When we zoomed our camera in, we were able to get this shot of Yates Dam, about a mile or so up river.
Tallassee is roughly 20 miles east of Montgomery, so we find ourselves on this little stretch of Hwy. 14 a lot. On this particular day, I saw the untimely passing come to one of our beloved Alabama Buzzards. Harley and I were following behind an older model van, that looked like an old painter's van with no windows. We were clipping along, around 68 mph., having a nice relaxing, guilt free ride through the country when... BAM! All I really saw was an explosion of dark feathers at the right front bumper of the van. Then, as I passed by the area of impact, I saw the poor old buzzard dazed and still staggering along the side of road, fluttering what was left of a featherless wing. I felt sorry for that big ol' bird right then, realizing how quick his day just went from good to bad, all before you could even say "foo-bar".

While cruising around the state on Hwy. 14, we find ourselves making a stop in the little community of Notasulga, Alabama, home to the infamous Sammy the Cat. Even though Sammy's story has earned him a bit of notability, we missed the opportunity to meet him in person. You can be certain though, I kept my eyes peeled for any energies of the spiritual nature, since there have been so many reports of ghost sitings in this area, that the residents don't even get excited about them anymore. We stopped here for a little stretch break, and while taking a couple pic of this old building, I wondered if there were any ghosts in there. Ooooooohhh!
Tucked away in the back of this old cabin is our little "Historic Out House" I posted about yesterday for my Pic Of The Week. I still think it's funny that the old privy is a protected antique!

Crossroads like these are such a treat when you ride. It's like your entering a time warp, and your rumbling iron steed is the only way you can travel from one dimension to another.
These buildings are of an era long gone, but not yet forgotten. I had to laugh at the handwritten sign by the door of the big gray barn. It says, "BARN DANCE 2nd & 3rd Thursdays 8:00 PM". The other one, in the window says "MUSIC LESSONS inside". I wondered how old those signs were. I sat for a moment, while I imagined a couple of old fellas lounging around in front of the Fred's feed and seed, watching the busy happenings in their little town of Notasulga. Ah, the good ol' days.

If you ever find yourself in our little neck of the woods, Tallassee is a great place to ride. Hotel Talisi serves a great little lunch and provides an atmosphere of historic preservation within it's walls.

There are rivers and bridges and broken buzzards too,
along with pretty country roads, to satisfy you.
You can just imagine, what treats you may see
when riding through our old, and historic Tallassee.

Ya'll come back now, ya hear!

Lady R

Monday, February 16, 2009


I took a picture of this "out house" while we were taking a stretch break in Notasulga, Alabama last weekend. Believe it or not, it's marked as a Historical Building! How's that for preservation!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Dear Diary... a glimpse into the pages of a journal written by a woman rider.

February 8, 2009
Dear Diary,
I got so lost in my own world today, it's amazing I even found my way back! H and I went riding again with no specific direction in mind.
The sky was so blue and bright, it was just way too pretty to pass up! I know I should feel guilty for running off and leaving things undone... but I don't!

I was happy to be in the wind, for the second day in a row. It felt good to wear my half helmet again as the warm air caressed across my face. The roads became our playground and we were like two kids at recess. We rode aimlessly, from one crossroads to another, deciding at each one which direction to take. To me, these are the best kinds of rides.

Every now and then, a nasty little thought would creep into the corner of my mind, reminding me of the laundry piled up on the floor, and dirty dishes still in the sink. Maybe I should be ashamed of myself... but I'm not. I was having too much fun! I giggled out loud as I realized Dr. Suess was dancing around in my head...

I do not care
those dishes are there.
I do not care
they're there, I swear!

Do not fear
I'm in no quandary.
I simply love,
my piles of laundry!

Oh, I was having a blast! I couldn't feel guilty if I tried. The only one that could put me in the dog house for not doing my chores, was in front of me, leading the way, having just as much fun and I was!

The pleasure I get
from riding my Glide,
The joy I feel
I cannot hide!

If given the choice
to work or play,
I'll be riding the roads
again on that day!

Yep, like I said, I was in my own world today.

Monday, February 9, 2009


I think these old covered bridges are pretty cool. Built in 1861, this one spans across the Talladega Creek near Childersburg, AL. Kymulga Mill and Covered Bridge was one of our picture stops while riding around the area this past Saturday.

Have a good Monday everybody!

Lady R

Sunday, February 8, 2009


We've been finding ourselves riding up to Sylacauga a lot lately to visit and check on Harley's recovering Momma. She's doing really well and we were planning to take her out for lunch Saturday and give her a chance to get out of her apartment. The temperature was going to be in the mid 60's, so of course, we rode up on the Glides. No, we didn't take her out on the motorcycle, but, she does like to tease her neighbors that we've come to take her for a ride.

When we arrived in town earlier than we expected, I figured we'd go hang out at her place while she got ready. Harley had something else in mind. As we passed the street we normally turn on, to get to her Apartment complex, I wondered where we were going. My answer came about a mile or so up the road when he turned his left blinker on. I knew right then what we were going to do. He wanted to ride down memory lane! Back in our dating days and right after we were married, we were stationed in Meridian, MS for awhile, which allowed us the luxury of being able to visit Harley's family pretty often. But, we would always hook up with his best friends, who were married then too, and ride all over these old roads "hang'in out" and drinking beer and listening to loud rock music. In a small town like Sylacauga, this is how young folks entertained themselves. (I'm so glad we survived our youth!)
We rode all around Harley's old "hood" while observing all the changes and growth that has progressed throughout the last 28 years. He was fortunate enough to have motorcycles when he was younger, and it was kind of neat to be riding with him now, while he reminisced and enjoyed his old stomping grounds. I kept my eyes peeled for flying debris, on a count of a story he once told me. Back in that day in time, and being in the south, there were still some prejudicial divisions between blacks and whites, but for the most part, it was pretty isolated. When he was 14, he had a 1974 Yamaha RD 350 at the time, and would love to fly up and down these roads like there's no tomorrow (you could have a motorcycle license at 14 years old then). One day he was flying down this one particular road that was mostly populated with black families. A little black kid who lived on that road saw him coming, took aim, and threw tennis shoe at him. Harley said it hit him square in the chest and it hurt like a M#ther F*%ker! I asked him if he went back and beat that kids ass, and he said it was all he could do, to try to breath again! Besides, he said, that little boy is probably still laughing at the fact that he knocked the shit out of some dumb ass white boy flying down his road! LOL!
We were taking a little stretch break, but after we stopped, I realized that this spot triggered more memories of another story from the "Hell On Wheels" archives. Again, back in the day, Harley and his best friend, who had a souped up Trans AM, came flying around this curve one night and damn near killed themselves on this bridge (it's hard to see, but there really is small bridge here). You can't tell by the way it looks now, but back then, the concrete bridge walls were no wider than the pavement of the road. Today, only one side of the bridge wall is there and it seems much wider. I figured, the way Harley is looking over the bridge at the small stream below, he is counting his blessings that he is still here today. And considering he is the love of my life, me too!

A great spot to ride to if your in the area, is the Kymulga Grist Mill and Park. It's located about 4 miles northeast of Childersburg and being 140 years old, is on the National Register of Historic Places. It's pretty awesome to imagine this old mill when it was still in full operation, filling up rail cars with grain after bushels and bushels of corn went "through the mill".
About 5 or so miles from the mill, you can find a nice place to cool off during the summer at DeSoto Caverns. We were riding in this area last summer when the heat was cooking us at about 98 degrees. We stopped here so we could go into the caverns for a little while and get cooled off. It's a nice place to bring families for reunions and picnics. There is a ton of fun stuff for the kids and of course you have the caverns that provide hours of exploring.

After a bit, we managed to steer back toward Momma's so we could go on an enjoy our lunch date with her. In summary, we had a nice visit and a nice ride. Riding around Harley's old stomping grounds gave him the chance to reminisce over days gone by. I can't think of a better way to spend a Saturday than riding around the old hood!

Lady R

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Dear Diary... a glimpse into the pages of journal written by a woman rider.

January 31, 2009
Dear Diary,
I had one of those "moments" today! I don't even know why I call them moments when they really only last about 3 seconds.
It usually happens when I least expect it, and mostly when I'm riding. That's the only thing about riding I wish I could change. Often, I see or experience something really nice, but, I can't stop to capture it because it may be unsafe. So, I consider my "moments" little gifts from God. The chance to "stop and smell the roses" and enjoy the beauty before you, even if it's only for 3 seconds. I just wish there was some way I could print a picture of those "moments" so I can share them with others. But, maybe that's why I consider them so special, it's like God and I share a little secret.

My "moment" came to me while we were on our ride home after we went to visit the MIL.
The late afternoon sun was setting and it started getting hard at times to see where I was going. It would shine right in my face, or glare badly on my windshield and was creating quite a challenge. We had already passed by the lake and were almost in Wetumpka, going up one of those long straight stretches of road, up hill, with pine trees standing tall on both sides. H was leading and I could tell as we ascended up this hill, the sun was going to poke into my eyes again when we reached the crest. Just as I was craning my neck to see over my windshield... it happened.

The sun appeared to be resting right down on top of the road.
Right as H crested the hill in front of me, his blackened silhouette was clearly defined within the big bright circle of orangey yellow. The tall pines that lined up along both sides of the road appeared to be framing this beautiful "moment" of time. It looked like the highway was entering straight into the sun and the perfect sihouette of a biker was riding into the light. For 3 seconds, H became the "Sun Rider". It was a beautiful picture!

I hope I never lose my mind, for fear of losing my mental album of "moments". I don't have many of these when I'm driving my car, which is why I think riding is so wonderful!

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Perceive: pres. part., to become aware of through the senses, eg. by hearing or seeing.

Perception: n., the ability to perceive.

I've come to realize, that the ability to make or break a good ride, is all how we perceive things. I know we've all discussed attitudes before, and how having a good attitude is a very key factor. But, where does our attitude come from? Probably how we perceive things has a lot to do with it.

Yesterday, we planed to go up to Sylacauga to visit with Harley's mom, who's recovering from a brief illness. We discussed our travel options, Glides vs. truck. The fact that the sun was shining brightly, helped a lot with our decision. There was no rain in the forecast, and even though it was only 42 degrees at that moment, the temps should climb to around 56 degrees by 2:00. We knew the ride would be chilly, but the fact that it was sunny would make it enjoyable. I felt need to get out there and ride on behalf of my brothers and sisters, suffering in the cold north who can only wait and count the days till Spring. They would probably give anything right now, to have a day like this.

I wore my rain suit pants over my chaps to ensure that I would be comfy while we cut through the morning air. The sun on my back was keeping me from being too cold, and my windshield and fairing was a tremendous help in blocking a lot of the cold wind as we made our way up the long curvy road. I realized pretty quick, that if it had been overcast, (as it has been a lot lately) this ride may not have been as enticing to me. I was thanking the sun profusely at that moment for being here today, so we can bask in her warm light while we enjoy our January ride.

We saw very few riders out, and by the funny looks we were getting from the bundled up drivers we were sharing the road with, they perceived us to be blooming idiots. While passing by a big house in the rural area of Wedowee, I saw 3 men standing around on a large driveway doing something with a trailer. One man had his hands shoved deep in his pockets, with his arms locked straight, hopping from leg to leg, as if trying to stay warm. He turned and stared at us, with a look of bewilderment and chin hanging. I'm sure, it was his perception, that it was too cold to be out on motorcycles. He appeared to be very cold just standing around in the driveway, much less flying through the wind at 70 miles an hour.

On the flip side, as a rider, the way I perceive things can change too, depending on my circumstances. At the beginning of our ride I was very happy with the sun and my windshield. Now, two of the things I coveted the most earlier that morning, became somewhat of a detriment to my enjoyment later in the afternoon.

After we had a nice visit with the MIL, and me doing my good DIL deeds (I just tidied up and did few light household chores), we headed back to Montgomery in a Southwest direction. By this time, the late afternoon sun was low enough to create havoc on my vision. Riders know what I'm talking about. That blinding ride into the sun that makes you think your eyes are going to constrict so far back into your head, it will take days for them to come back out! From one curve to the next, the sun pops in and out of your eyes with her blinding light. It's times like this, I wish I had enrolled in "Helen Keller's School Of Motorcycle Riding".

The windshield, I was so thankful for this morning, has now caused me to contract a severe case of "Turtle Pokeitis". Because of the sun's glare landing directly on it, it became almost like etched glass. I had a very difficult time seeing through it during these intermittent intense blasts of sunlight. As a result, I repeatedly stretched my neck as far as I could, so I could see over my "precious" windshield, thus causing me to mimic a turtle poking it's head of of their shell. All the while, the tall pine trees that lined the road, provided a scattered break in the streams of light, causing the impression I was riding through a solar powered strobe light. Flash! Flash! My perception of the sun and my windshield was changing again.

I'm not complaining, mind you, just sharing! I still had a great ride and I'm very glad we took the Glides out for some fresh air. The air warmed up nicely and I experienced some really great road time. Even though the sun proved to be both, a help and a hindrance, it provided the best backdrop I could hope for, to ensure a beautiful day to ride. I perceive there will be more days like this in my future.

Lady R