Our New Hampshire trip - Part One - Steve Saunders Goldwing Forums

 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-20-2009, 12:45 PM Thread Starter
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OK, this is long overdue I know, but it's the first chance I've had to sit and tell about the trip through New Hampshire. There was so much in that trip, the sights, the roads, the people,that I'm not sure how to put it all in one posting.



When we left on Saturday, I must have really pissed off a rain a cloud as it followed us the full length of New York. We left later than we wanted, so we decided to take the thruway to make up time, bumper to bumper traffic in a heavy rain at 45 to 55 miles an hour the whole way. There were times when I couldn't see the car in front me or the one behind me. I didn't dare try to pass in the rain and I couldn't risk slowing up for fear the car behind me wouldn't see me slowing up until I was sitting on his hood ornament. So we moved on, stopping at the service areas along the way. The rain didn't stop until we hit Vermont, and from there we followed the rain, never seeing a dry road until the next morning. It was this part of the ride where I really appreciated having Wendy with me. There is a vulnerability in riding a motorcycle, we all know that, but consider the passenger. They sit back there seeing everything, but denied a feeling of control over the situation. They sit with there with their hands at their side, completely relying on you, your skills, your judgement, your choices to keep them safe. They honor us with this trust and we should NEVER take them for granted. We came up on a semi in the rain, the traffic in front of us had been passing him until we found ourselves riding his wake. There was no where to go, we had to deal with him. The windshield was so wet and continually fogging up to the point I spent much of the ride looking off to the side of the it. I realized the only "safe" answer was to pass him, not a choice I relished, but it was what it was. So when traffic opened in the other lane, I moved into it and prepared to speed up, that's when realized the complexity of the situation. The semi was hauling tandem, two trailers, and to make it worse there was a curve to the left coming up. I worked with a rider, a good rider with decades of intelligent experience who was caught in the draft of a semi and pulled under, this was a thought that was very much in my mind. I decided to hold back until after the curve, traffic filled in the spot I vacated behind him, so I had to hold position off to his left and control the bike in the rain and fight the buffeting of the wind from the trailer. Finally the curve straightened out and moved ahead, as I passed I moved as far left as I could and I noted he drifted to the far right of his lane, when I passed him I hit the signal and continued moving until I felt safe cutting over. Just before I was ready to change lanes I heard two short blasts on his horn and saw he was flashing his lights. My dad was a truck driver so I knew what it meant, he was letting me know that he saw me and it was safe to move over. about 45 miles later we came to a stop and I could pull over and clear me nerves and my head. Now I mentioned the courage and faith of our passengers, never, not once, did Wendy bother me during all of this. She understood the situation, realized that between two choices, there was only one to make, and even though it scared the hell out of her, she sucked it up and and held herself in position. She never once commented about not taking the car or anything.



God I love this woman.



Anyway, we arrived at our motel late, about 11:30 pm, I was completely soaked through my leather coat and chaps, Wendy on the other hand only had to wring out her socks. Next trip there will be TWO sets of frog togs. As she went to our room, I parked the bike where I could see from our room and covered it for the night after wiping it down a bit I saw a couple trailers, but didn't give them any thought. I was about to get an amusing discovery that would be an ongoing event through the trip.



The next morning I grabbed a couple of towels, uncovered the bike, wiped it down and let dry while we went for breakfast in the motel. It was then that I understood the trailers. The Harley riders were unloading there rides. Now these weren't stripped down bikes, they were all fitted with trunks and saddlebags, fit and ready for a ride, yet they were being trailered in. Maybe they came from a long ways away I thought, but no, looking at the license plates they were from Ohio, just a few hundred miles from where I was from. I chuckled and headed to meet Wendy in the lobby for breakfast where the rest of their party was eating as well. They had their riding clothes on as did we and they knew we belonged to the wing and were treating us with expected contempt, not saying anything to start a problem just being very obvious with their attitudes. At first I got a little miffed about it until Wendy pointed out how sad it was that they couldn't afford a motorcycle that they could trust to take them on the ride without bring them on trailers with all the tools and spare parts in tow. Did I mention how much I love this woman.



Anyway, we had breakfast and started out for the New Hampshire coast. The ride was nothing less than jubilant, the view of the mountains, lakes and rivers and the roads. Well kept roads with hardly more than a mile between curves, the founding fathers had to have seen the coming of the motorcycles and built the roads for us. Well, on the way there I noticed that the one highway footrest was loose, so we pulled over, got the tools out and I proceeded to tighten it up, thats when I started laughing, Wendy asked what the joke was so I told her. Those foot pegs, the only part of the bike that almost fell off, was meant for a Harley. So off we were to the coast. Now I'm not going to be able to mention route numbers here as I never remember them right. If anyone needs, feel free to ask and I'll look them and tell you what there were. We got to the coast and followed that along the coastline... oh wait a minute, there was a little misstep along the way. You see, whenever we go out on the bike, Wendy is the navigator, I'm happy riding and could usually care less what roads we take, besides, she's been out that way before so she's calling the the shots. We come to a traffic circle, and she points out a street and says go that way, so I go that way. I mean I love this woman, and if you love someone, you trust them, right, and besides, she's been here before. So e go down this very non-decript road for awhile, and I'm noticing it's a bit different than anything I've seen before. The trees and bushes are further away from the road and there are no road signs or advertising signs, and then I note some thing curious, behind the trees and bush's I'm noticing glimpse's of chain link fence, high chain link fence, high chain link fence with concertina wire on top. Well, while I"m pondering this, I suddenly have to slow up and come to a stop, there's a booth up ahead marked with stop signs and as I approach it there a man coming out, a man in uniform, a security uniform, complete with club and what looks to be a Glock and look his hand is on the Glock. In fact it is a man in a uniform, with club, hand on the Glock and a very unfriendly look and demanding what we're doing here. Now, I'm the driver, the guy, the man, the leader, it's my my place to answer his question, besides, he was looking at me. So I quickly formed an answer that should be forward, honest, and direct.



So I reply "Probably wishing I were somewhere else."



Ahhh, so the man in the uniform with the club and his hand on the Glock DOES NOT have a sense of humor. So, dropping that answer, I speak up with the only answer that will get me out of trouble with him.



"Don't ask me, she's the one giving me directions."



Very good, now the man in the uniform with the club and the hand on the Glock is looking at her. I will pay for this later, but for now, I am safe....maybe.



She explains what route we were looking for and that she got confused coming around the circle. At which point the guard explains that we just entered a secure entrance to a Nuclear power facility, not the main entrance, the secure one, the one we told later is used to bring in and remove nuclear material. We were even asked if we noticed any little red dots on our clothes as were driving down the road.



Anyway, he gave us directions told me where to turn around and watched us leave. And I watched him, even as he disappeared in the mirror, that hand never left the Glock.



So now, I have the maps.


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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-20-2009, 03:32 PM
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Red dots!! Not good when a sniper rifle is trained on you.

You're not finished with the story yet, continue.




Michael
Too much chrome to polish, too little time!!
Have trailer, will travel!! Not all Wingers are old Wingers.

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Myself, USN, Vietnam Vet. 68-72, 74-76
VF-194 aboard the USS. Oriskany
USS Saratoga, ships company

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Bagmaster, our former forum Toolmaster and friend, is no longer with us. He passed away in February 2012.

The roads and byways, no matter how beautiful and exhilarating, are a lonelier place now. RIP Bagmaster (Baggy).
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-20-2009, 08:40 PM
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So far, a very good story/report. Now get to the part where you receive a red lump on your noggen

BTW,,,,,,,,,, welcome back home safe and sound.

Now please do go on.

The things I liked,,,,I\'ve tried em twice!
You have to be a little Crazy,,,,,, or else you\'ll go Insane.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-21-2009, 03:31 PM
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Good story so far...did you climb mt washington?....I ride interstates alot rain or shine....passing trucks used to un nerve me in the dry...now it's just relax your grip some...stay in the middle of your lane..you need some where to go if you get a wind blast...and be ready for the turbulence...don't tarry along side but don't full throttle it either....if the rain is coming down to the point that your visibilty is seriously impared...time to get off the highway
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