The rains fell in the right places, away from the ride.

Thirty seven years after the Marguerittaville summer, I returned to Ottumwa, Iowa. I didn’t recognize the place!

Mike gave me a tour of the countryside and his old hometown called Eldon, site of the American Gothic House. For those of you unfamiliar with the artistic significance of Eldon, as Mike was too; it’s home to the second most recognized painting next to the Mona Lisa – see attached photo.

After Mike loaded his toys on the trailer, we dropped off his rig at a friends farm, unloaded the bike, and then headed out to meet up with the NVAR (National Veteran’s Awareness Ride) riders. Along the way, we stopped in Winterset, Iowa. In case that name doesn’t ring a bell, it’s the birthplace of John Wayne. How cool was that. Continue reading

POSSIBLE SNOW FLURRIES by October 18 – Let’s ride.

It’s an electrifying time when the bikes get out of winter’s cold storage and hit dry asphalt. Minnesota riders are as committed as the fishermen, frigid winds or not, they’re out there. Calendars everywhere note runs here and there for this reason or that cause. There’s not a weekend open till snow flies – or it gets too deep.

The “08” is ready for Rolling Thunder in Washington DC, on to Ground Zero and Boston, and then a scenic route home via Canada. After close inspection, the front end was in surprisingly good condition, but I changed bushings and seals anyway. During a closer inspection, when I decided to change rubber here, rather than in mid-trip, I found curls of steel reaching out between the frame and rear fork. Yuck! A constant beating from Vietnam’s trails were ripping the pivot shaft bearings apart. That may have something to do with low back problems too. Anyway, the drive belt is in remarkable condition, and only half the chrome on the pulley teeth is missing. LOL Continue reading

41,000 miles across Vietnam in Faith and Honor, with a playful Vengeance.

 

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