Hey, looky here… He’s blogging again!
Yeah, it’s been that kind of winter thus far. But, I think I’m starting to perk up a little. In my efforts to “burn off” some of my vacation time I left work early on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and was able to get in a little saddle time each day. Tuesday was confined to the eMotion Rollers, but I was able to get out on the road Thursday and Friday for some “real” riding. Thursday was a balmy 72°F and I snuck in a quick 20mi ride before the rain started. Friday was more like 48°F and that same 20mi loop sure seemed a lot harder than it did the day before.
Last night being Friday night means we were having a grand ole’ time at On The Border with our friends Deb & David on our side of the bar and our faithful barkeeps and friends Jeff & Matt on the business side of the bar. The maggies were flowing nicely as the majority of our time was spent refining our plans for bike week at Panama City Beach in early May; it just can’t get here fast enough!!! We are so ready for another mini-vacation in PCB. We seem to keep expanding our itinerary so that we can enjoy at least one semi-quiet day before and one semi-quiet day after the masses come and go, never mind missing the awful traffic that comes with the migration to PCB from all points North via Alabama through a couple of really narrow choke points. It’s shaping up to be another great weekend, that’s for sure.
After doing our OTB thing last night, bless her heart… Debbie had volunteered to go and sit with the grandkids for a while. So, she headed off around 8:00 PM and didn’t walk back in the door until around 12:30 AM. And, instead of finding the girls tucked in bed and asleep when taking over the sitting duties from her sister Andrea, she found the girls in the kitchen eating cake icing while Andrea did some baking. Guess which little girls were wired for the next two hours! So much for Debbie’s quiet evening reading while the girls slept. Oh the joys of grand parenting.
Today was an early to rise so that we could go spend a couple of hours at the North American Motorcycle Show over on the other side of Atlanta at the North Atlanta Trade Center in Gwinnett. I like to get there when it opens at 9:00 AM on Saturdays so that we can make our rounds and be gone before the masses arrive. So, after making breakfast for Debbie and me, we got ourselves ready and were out the door by 8:20 and made it to the show by around 9:15 AM.
As soon as we walked into the main hall we ran into Bob S. from Earl Small’s Harley Davidson at the BMW of Atlanta booth, noting Bob was incognito and checking out the competition. Bob S. was the Sales Manager I closed the deal with on our Harley back in June. Just a great person, as are all the folks who we’ve met at Earl Small’s. Anyway, we had a nice chat with Bob before he continued with his rounds and we then moseyed on over to the BMW S1000RR display so I could show Debbie what I’d like for Valentines Day! Yeah, right. Add that to my Dream Garage list of bikes. Anyway, the cool part about our visit to the BMW booth was running into Nate Kern, BMW North America’s “Factory Pilot” and just one of the nicest, informative motorcycle enthusiasts you’d ever want to meet. Because we had gotten there before there were a lot of folks standing around we had the pleasure of spending a good 15-20 minutes chatting with Nate about everything from the S1000RR to his old R1100S bike up for sale on Ebay to his thoughts about the different BMW sport bikes he’s ridden and what he’s been doing for BMA N.A.. I’m thinking I / we might just have to go and participate in one of his track days at Roebling down near Savannah this year.
Anyway, after that we made the rest of our rounds, visited with some other friends at the Earl Small’s booth — Brian, Sam, Hannah, etc. — and got a great 50% off deal for Debbie on a really nice leather H-D jacket with a cute little orange sleeveless hoody. We picked up a few other small items and made some contacts with a leather apparel vendor who we’ve made plans to visit with at PCB in May. Anyway, by 11:30 A.M. we’d made two complete circuits of the show — which looked to be a bit smaller in size and the number of vendors from previous years — and headed for home.
After having some lunch we geared-up and headed out for a nice 25mi ride on the tandem… yes, finally, Tandem Content!! The temps were hovering right around 60°F but that was just about right for a moderately paced afternoon ride. We had a generally uneventful outing, other than jettisoning a water bottle when we hit a pot hole that I didn’t see in the shadows and, wouldn’t you know: the car that was behind us nailed the bottle. So much for the top on that one: dagnabit. It was one of our new bottles from The Dancing Bear Lodge up in the Smokey Mountains. Well, at least we know were we can get a replacement this spring! Anyway, it was a great ride.. mostly because I finally had my sweetie along vs. going it alone the previous two days.
Tonight we’re going to skip our usual Saturday night at Olde Towne Tavern & Grill and head over to the Georgia Rib Company on the other side of Marietta where our friend Roger Strauss’ band Exodus will be playing. Yes, this is the same Roger Strauss of Georgia Tandem Rally and CNN fame of whom we’ve written in the past. I suspect we’ll find a few of the “new” usual suspects on hand for the Pork & Rock Fest, so it should be a good time. The last time we saw Roger’s band play was over at Wild Wings Cafe a few months back. We’re actually headed to Wild Wings this coming Thursday night to support our friends in the band Pretty Twisted when then take on the battle of the bands. Again, always a good time when Jody and the boys are making music! Oh yeah, and it’s also their guitar player Tyler Porch’s 16th Birthday… yes, just 16!
Holly cow, we still have tomorrow to take care of! Like I said, a great couple of days.