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Days 4,5 and 6 of our 48/10 Last Summer


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Hope you enjoy the middle part of our journey.


Day 4





CN 95

RI 95

MA 95

NH 95









Today was probably the most grueling as far as traffic, but we totally expected it. Knocked out the New England area, adding 10 more states to the “Been there done it” list after an 870 mile run. We have yet to have a 1000 mile day and we don’t care. The steady pace we’ve set seems to be doing just fine, since we have 25 states under our belt in 4 days.


We visited Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and New York. The Bronx deserves a whole story. I’ve rarely seen people that stacked up on top of each other. The over passes were multi-story apartment complexes. We purposely waited to hit this leg of the trip in hopes of hitting less traffic. It worked. I guess. But it was still bumper-to-bumper, fast moving and layers and layers of humans living on top of each other with lots of food smells.


When we got to the edge of the Bronx, we stopped at a McDonalds.


“That was intense,” RD said.


I stood guard over the Mistress while he went to get the food. I noticed many other people staying in their cars as well, sending only one individual inside. I decided we needed to follow the example set by the locals. Also, I didn’t like the feel of the guy that pulled up next to us and didn’t get out of his car. Just sat there staring out the window. RD left me with instructions to smack him with my helmet if he got out of line. It’s nice to be protected by the one you love.


“And remember to hit him in the nose,” he said as he was walking away.


I wondered which helmet he wanted me to use. I stood there in my tigress stance and watched the guy sleep for about 20 minutes before he tried to leave by driving over the cement divider in front of him.


I was on bear alert all day. I saw 8 deer on the side of the road and may have shrieked. RD stayed calm then asked if I’d seen any bears.


“You’re right,” I said. It’s spring and they aren’t hibernating anymore!”


“And they’re hungry,” RD replied.


Since it was Fathers day, I started thinking about RD and how we met. I saw this guy on the racetrack that would gallop horses in blue jeans, leggings, helmet and goggles. No shirt. I’d hurry and get chores done, so I could ogle him when he came by. Ogle means blatantly stare where I’m from. He was in perfect balance with the horse and perfect shape. Now 25 years later I’m with him on the Mistress. And he still makes me laugh. I love this man!


What is it exactly that we love about this sport? We are always cold, or hot, or sore, or wet or something other than comfortably sitting on the Lazy Boy watching TV. I think it’s the state of being. When we are on the bike, the past doesn’t matter; the future is the next turn. We are in tune with every sense in our bodies. The smells, the wind, the vibration of the bike skimming over the road. The scenery streams by but does not go unnoticed. For a small window of time, we are adventurers. Pioneers. Only on faster horses. And it is perfect.




Day 5


PA 90

OH 90

IN 90



A long straight haul today took us through rural New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan and into Indiana. Doesn’t sound like much, but we racked up 730 miles in gusting winds under threatening cloud cover. Do they get tornadoes in this part of the country? If there was a tornado, where would a person riding on a motorcycle park?


We met another motorcyclist on our break in Ohio that was traveling behind us and got caught in a hailstorm. He had to pull over. A family in a SUV let him crawl in with them to wait it out. He was pretty shook up. I don’t blame him. He didn’t have a helmet on. We got lucky and breezed right through the middle of two fronts in sunshine and NO RAIN!!!!


We have a problem with our intercom system. RD can hear me, but I can’t hear him. So we had to resort to sign language. He actually got mad at me because I couldn’t read his made up language. Well gesturing right back at ya buddy.


The scenery was kind of monotonous through Ohio, which left me free to watch people and do my favorite thing – make up stories about people I don’t know. I’ve single handedly made more people I never knew do more things they’ve never done than anyone else on the planet. Here’s an example:


Yesterday a man blew by us in a box (car) with a sign in his window that said, “FEMA. Disaster Relief Vehicle.” He was heading towards Iowa with New York plates. Probably on his way to help in the flood areas, but here’s the real story.


Just as Joe’s wife was notified that her elderly mother had taken a turn for the worse, the phone rang.


“We need you, Joe,” the FEMA director said quietly, “the levy isn’t holding and it’s going to be bad.”


“You gotta go Joe,” his wife said before he could protest. “They need you.”


“Oh great!” yelled Brian, Joe’s son from his third marriage. “I guess this means I don’t get the car again!”


Or something like that.


They have travel malls here for rest stops. You pull into a huge parking lot and a big building offers McDonalds, Starbucks, Pop Eye Chicken, Chinese food and Sweet treats. A gift shop. Restrooms and family restrooms. Not sure what a family restroom is. Do they all shower together or something? Didn’t explore.


I scared a lady from India. We were making a very late stop to add our liners and she was walking the parking lot. A sport started by sore and weary long distance travelers. Parking lot walking. It should be in the next Olympics. Anyway, I was getting my liners out and looked at her as she passed and said hello. She grimaced – as in frowned – and scurried away. I got my feelings hurt a little. Until I went into the bathroom.


My headgear under my helmet is a single piece that covers my head and neck. It itches, so all day I move the helmet to scratch my head and by the end of the day my face is framed in some pretty wild hair. I looked like the Red Power Ranger with a horrible facial growth. I sat on the bathroom floor and laughed until my stomach hurt. Poor woman. We’d seen her and her family at the rest stop in Cleveland.


She probably thought I was following her. Scaring her. And now trying to be her friend! I wonder what kind of stories she’s making up about me!


RD is a little disheartened after today’s run. He’s fretting about mileage, thinking the route could be better. I’m trying to remind him of a few realities:


One – we’ve never done this before, so how can we fail? It’s all a creation in the making. Some days are great and some are power rangers with horrible facial growth.


Two – We have 28 states under our belt that we did not have five days ago.


Three – We average 800 miles a day. +/- 800 miles a day is an awesome feat even though it is hard on our seats. (smiling)


Four – We survived the Bronx!!!!!!!!!!!!!!





Day 6








We finished Indiana and knocked out Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. We have visited 34 states in 6 days and less than 144 hours. We knocked off another 730 miles. We have 14 big ones to go. Failure is not an option. I told RD when we left Oklahoma that we would be different people when we came home. He gave me the “you are the weirdest woman on the planet look.” But I stand by my word. Here’s why:


- Both of us no longer fit into our pants. They’re too loose.

- We no longer drink coffee. Swapped it out for bananas, yogurt, some kind of muffin thing and orange juice. Lots of orange juice.

- We no longer socialize with anyone that does not hang out in gas stations (or travel malls).

- We don’t carry anything that cannot fit into a pocket somewhere in some piece of our outerwear.


I’d say that’s different. I was excited about the prospects of all that I would learn on the road. Would I be the next Jack Kerouac? Or the next Ripley’s Believe It Or Not? My vote is for Ripley. I’ve learned all kinds of stuff I didn’t know 6 days ago.


I can take a kerchief out of my breast pocket, fold it into a triangle and tie it around my neck going 70 mph on a motorcycle. Laugh. Go ahead. Now you do it.


I can sit on my hands for 12 miles. Especially when my tailbone hurts.


I can stand up on the motorcycle behind RD with no hands. Angela, catch your grandmother. And convince her that I did not really do that today. Good girl.


North/South roads are odd numbered. East/West roads are even numbered.


There are 20 posts between each mile marker counting the mile marker.


Today we made it safely past Chicago. After the Bronx and Atlanta, we were more than a little worried. We drove from one end to the other in 37 minutes. I took a picture of a cop car as he came screaming by us.


From then on it was rolling hills and fantastic road. I thought that maybe I should put all the technical stuff in this series, like how many RPM’s do we hit when we slip into 5th on a straightaway. Or what kind of spark plugs do we use. Or even first take this highway, then this one, then that one. But by all means do not go over there. Over there is dangerous and has bad animal signs.


But I decided against the techno stuff. Why? Because it’s all documented and I can do it as a follow up when I get home. Right now we’re on the road. And the road deserves attention. It deserves explanation. I want to stay in the moments. Each and every one before I have to return to the monotony of being an adult again.


Today a little boy was standing in his front yard raking. When he saw us he started waving like no tomorrow. I got so excited I waved back with just as much enthusiasm and nearly ripped my arm off at the elbow when the wind hit it. Note to self: wave small.


RD was flirting today. Not easy to do on the Mistress. But my “remember the positive stuff” was wearing off on him. Sometimes when we ride he reaches down and grabs my thigh and squeezes it like a hug. It makes me smile. It makes me think that maybe after all these years he’s not bored, or unhappy or sorry that he married me. So when he “thigh hugged” me today, I went all sappy inside. Then a huge yellow bug committed suicide on my helmet visor.


We killed a bird today. He flew into The Mistress and she won. I felt so bad. But then RD almost swallowed a full-grown pheasant. It flew up out of the grass and right into us. Wings fully extended. I yelled, forgetting my microphone worked excellently. RD nearly jumped out of his stitch. He swerved, the pheasant veered left and everyone went home to their family tonight.


I saw a herd deer running today in a pasture. And jumping. Just for fun. It was amazing to see them in the wild. RD was happy to see them running away from the road.


RD finally helped me identify the small brown fat animals that stood up when we passed them in New York and Massachusetts – groundhogs.


Do you know in Michigan they have signs that light up when an animal is on the road ahead of you? Did you know that they never tell you what kind of animal is on the road, making the sign light up? Shortly after seeing the blinking neon, warning us about an animal at midnight last night, RD saw a huge dark beast running on the road beside us. THE BIG ANIMAL!!! AAAHHHH!!!!! Then he realized it was our shadow cast on the ditch from the car lights behind us. We pulled into the next hotel.


I think we need more warning signs on the road. I think we should add sparrows, pheasant, groundhogs and people on cell phones.



To see the pictures please go to our blog.

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