I woke up at 06:00 this morning when this long forgotten tiny shimmer of light crept across my face. Call it an internal time clock or just a fluke, but one eye creaked open and peered out at the beginning of a pretty neat distant sunrise. I always have helmet ponders, so I guess this is somewhat of a pillow ponder, how foofey is that? My ‘pillow ponder’ brought me to the conclusion that Ma Nature is at least giving some thought to spring. Oh yeah. Something is definitely different this morning. I whip up a coffee and go stand outside. Yup, it’s still cold and without a breath of wind, but… kind of nice in a Canuck sort of way.
Between the rising sun and me is my squirrel feeder. It wasn’t originally intended for that purpose, but that’s what it turned into and must be rated five stars in the ‘Critter Michelin’ book, because four portly rodents were trying to cram themselves into a size three squirrel feeder and the little birds are getting righteously miffed. As I chuckle at the lightning fast whirl between feathers and fur, I also find that the rising sun is hitting my face with some sort of meaning, I can actually feel it. Blue Jays arrive and the feeder frenzy really gets cooking. The Jays are heavy hitters, but the squirrels are no match for these avian thugs and they leap for cover, flip whatever bird you want; for now the Jays own this joint. My old chocolate lab really wants to chase them all, but what the heck; that is just way too much work. Two semi-dedicated ‘barks’ are directed at the whole kerfuffle and that’s good ’nuff for her.
I know that salt will be all over the roads, but since my bike has zero chrome and kind of gets along well with dirt, I think that today might be good enough to ride, maybe. Not far, watch for sand in the corners, I’ll remind some cage pilots that the world of motorcycles still exists, hmmm. Just a quick putt, yeah that’s the ticket. Call it a ‘February fix’ for a motorcycle junkie. Hang on, I’ll be back.
Okay, I’m back. Oh yeah. Sixty clicks and I feel much better. I went and checked out my paltry 6/49 tickets – zero, nada, back to work you whiner, then on to the local Timmies, -4.5 C. This feels good; watch out for the shadows ’cause there’s ice in them. People in cages are giving me the thumbs up. Now there’s a twist, usually it’s another digit. Lots of fine sand in the corners, but then I’m not in a knee scraping mood anyway, I putt. I start to feel my heart recharge. I also feel that spot where my neck is exposed, quick fix. This is it. This is the way things should be. I have the shield on my Nolan open a crack because I lost the inner anti-fog liner somewhere around Whitehorse last year. That’s what you get when you pop your lid open at 120.
A grandma dynamite parks beside me at the Timmies and immediately starts yakking about everything. What is it about motorcyclists that bring out the best in people? I swear that I could be the scariest looking dude going and she’d still have told me that her friends missed the entrance. She’ll just yak with me until they turn around, which she and they did, of course by that time we’re fast buds and she has to introduce me to everyone.
A little girl with her Mom and Dad walk past and she says “I like your motorcycle Mister”. Dad wants to stop but Mom is stuffing a young hockey player in the minivan and giving him the look. It’s like I’m the only guy in the world people want to shoot the breeze with. Must be my bizarre yellow coat; ’cause it sure can’t be good looks.
I head home and take the more travelled route. I have a beat up pick-up truck pass me and I’m ten over in an 80. That stuff they now spray on the roads in Ontario tastes kinda odd. Thanks buddy.
My driveway looms up and let me tell you, my driveway is a challenge. Go straight up about fifty metres and make two switchbacks that have been the recent recipient of some major run-off. I miss the muck and roll into the shop. I nick into neutral and flip the side stand out, the GS ticks away while I get some clothes off. I shut it down and look at it. It really is an ugly machine, but in a very beautiful sense.
Today, my GS was a motorcycle junkie fix and a damn good one at that. I really should name it, but it’s gotta be something cool; something only Mojo readers would think up. If you think you have a totally awesome title let me know because today… my zero chrome R1200GS was way prettier than ‘Butt Ugly’. Who knows, maybe I can talk the gang into presenting a really cool (warm) Mojo hoodie to the winner. MMM
Ride Safe. Ride (very) Far, Stu