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A bad / good day to the office.


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The day was perfect, sun, a cool 17C and for the first time in a long time my back felt pretty good.


A quick run up to work 30 miles was in order. I wasn’t going to be needed there long so I didn’t think I would be compromising my back issue much.


I climbed aboard my GS, started up and out the driveway, a few turns later and I am on a four lane street heading north out of town.




The first thing I noticed was the right mirror was giving me a good view of my chest. I had just installed the right half of a pair of Ztech extenders on the bike and had not adjusted them. A quick adjustment brought the desired result just before I had to stop for the first stop light.


A little fine tweaking, the light changes and I release the clutch into second gear, fortunately the GS has enough low end to allow me to salvage that error.


The mirrors are giving me an unusual view to the back, really quite good but I will need to adapt to them.




Next up a light that changes and I push through actually hitting red before I am half through. I chastise myself, I have been forcing myself to brake rather then twist the throttle. Dumb.


For some reason I am feeling a little buzzy, everything is just a little off, when it should be a good ride. I just seem to be missing things, like I am not seeing the whole road. A bit unsettling but we are now out of traffic and on our way into the country.


I’m taking it pretty easy on the first down hill sweeper that hits bottom and then sweeps up in the opposite direction to a real hazardous access road, completely blind.


Damn what a sloppy job on those curves, but I am well focused for the blind access.


Then I fall behind a mustang rolling along at 30 over and I back off and let him lead.




Soon we come up behind a truck that slows us both down. There are a couple of driveways on the left side of the road but I think to myself I have never seen anyone ever turn left into them, I am checking the road ahead and starting to think pass, as I am sure the ford is thinking too. He isn’t making the move so a downshift and . . . . then trucks brakes come on hard and so does his left signal! Of course the Mustang is hard on his brakes and I get to practice a very rapid deceleration as well.


The truck pulls left, the ford moves right, I move right, the truck swings right for a reverse into the driveway!


We are on the brakes again.




Next up a climb to a stop light at a raceway intersection, meaning traffic both ways are always trying to beat the light. Its green for us, the mustang is turning right, I’m going straight through up onto the escarpment but there is no way I am going around him until he is well clear and I can see both ways, cool I’m in third heading up into a very sharp very narrow switchback road to get to the top of the hill but there is a roadwork sign, a truck on one side, a trailer on the other, a pile of gravel.




I hit the nautilus horn just in case, drop to second and thread the needle. No men, oops a couple of cones and around the first bend guy raking gravel off the road into a ditch.


No problem I scoot by and head for the switch back. It is very steep, very tight and very narrow. I always drop to first, lean and counter weight the bike to make as wide a turn as possible, lots of Sterling Moss types come down that hill.


So I drop to first and throttle for the exit and….. neutral!


Damn, I’m falling into the corner fast and fortunately no one is coming down the hill, I am able to kick it to first and save the guard rail contact, straighten out and climb to the next reverse corner which of course I completely screw up as well.




OK time to cool it big time so I take it up to third and say to myself, that’s it no more f*&% around. But still feel weird.




Coming off the escarpment has always been a favorite set of curves but today I am doing it sedately and it just feels bad.




Railway tracks and freight train. I stop, focus close focus far. Not my eyes. I mean I feel OK just me and the bike are out of synch somehow.




Next is the straight run to the office, basically a back road with nice scenery of the said escarpment on my right. 80 kHz limit here but after a dip and rise it drops to 60 though no one ever does that. I am still holding to my third gear self induced speed limiter.




Well there ya go the local constabulary, haven’t seen them on this road for two years, but they are here today. Now the GS is a US bike so the big numbers are mph and the itty bitty numbers are kph, hence the reason I usually have my gps on just so I can see how fast I am going. I know I am over 60 but . . . .


“Nice bike sir, what year is it? Do you realize you were doing 94 in a 60? Could I bother you for your papers?” Friendly young fellow at least.


“94?” I say. “I usually have my gps etc etc, not that that is an excuse but” . . . smile.




“I’ll just go back to my car for a minute sir, see what your record says.”




He is carrying the infamous yellow sheet and envelope; supply your own stamp envelope.




“Well sir you have a clean record, at 34 over you are subject to a $300.00 fine and 2 points. I am giving you 15 over that’s $52.00 and no points.”




“I appreciate that, thank you.”




“Your welcome, I’ll wait till you pull out sir, have a safe ride.”




Now here I am at work, typing this down. Why? I don’t know. Might be instructive for somebody else, maybe not.




The reason for the disjunction between rider and bike? A little pill taken last night as a muscle relaxant, no idea it would last so long, but it has.


That’s part of the lesson for sure; do not operate machinery while taking this medication.


Another would be, one anomaly OK, two anomalies Yellow, and three anomalies Red.


Of course the main one is, there are major hazards out there we deal with every time we get on the bike, all the above in a 30 mile commute, do not compromise your ability to deal with them, ever.



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Wow! I'm glad to hear you got through all of that OK (not counting the award). It could so easily have gone otherwise. I hope the ride back home went better (or that you left the bike and called a cab).

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Wow. Glad to hear you made it to work OK.


I recently had a medication change as well, to a time release muscle relaxant called Baclofen. I had a similar experience, took it at bedtime, but was drowsy in the morning. I drove my car to work, but never really felt quite right. In fact, I was drowsy all day. Took a half pill the next day and felt more "normal."



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Somedays I don't need the muscle relaxant to do similar stuff. I think that I am starting to recognize those days and ride like my grandmother. Usually the first curve tells me what kind of day it will be. Sometimes I just sigh and go home.

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Somedays I don't need the muscle relaxant to do similar stuff. I think that I am starting to recognize those days and ride like my grandmother. Usually the first curve tells me what kind of day it will be. Sometimes I just sigh and go home.




Some days you have it and some days you don't.

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