Sunday, September 26, 2010

Motorcycle ride to Kansas

Cliff's Kansas brother, Don, bought a used Harley motorcycle a couple of years ago; he put a lot of work put into it. It was a good-looking bike.  

This was taken when he first got the Harley, before he added a windshield.  That bike was NOISY, even for a Harley.  Of course, that always seems to be a source of pride for Harley owners.  Whatever.  
Don found out that his hand went to sleep if he traveled far on the bike, and he began wishing he had cruise control.  He starting looking for a Honda Gold Wing.
He finally found one, a 1988 (I think) 1500.  Cliff was dying to see it, so we agreed to meet Don and his wife in Fort Scott, Kansas, and picnic in the park.  This would give all of us a two-hour-plus ride, one way.

When I went out to get in the hot tub yesterday morning, it looked as though a beautiful day was brewing.  Checking the weather forecast, though, I found out there was a fifty percent chance of rain in our area after noon; not so at Fort Scott, where only clouds were forecast, no rain.  I told Cliff, "Fifty percent chance of rain means we have a fifty percent chance it won't rain; let's go ahead."  

We gassed up in Bates City, where lots of motorcyclists had gathered for a ride.  Blue skies, nothing but blue skies did I see.  (I sang that to Cliff as we headed south.)

We took a wrong turn in Kingsville.  Cliff chose a shabby-looking blacktop road off this highway and I said, "This looks like the kind of road that will turn to gravel before long."  He ignored me.

The road turned to gravel.  Cliff found a place to turn around; we looked at a map and got back on course.

Cliff remarked on those huge grain bins.  The words on that barn say it's a Hereford farm, but we saw no sign of any cattle; the farm was all planted in soybeans and corn.

We entered Kansas, and Highway 2 turned into Highway 68.

We had agreed to meet Don and Mary at the Walmart in Fort Scott; they beat us by a half-hour or so.

In spite of the fact that Don's 1500 Gold Wing is an older model, it has all the extras and looks almost as if it just came off the showroom floor.  Wow!  (To my St. Louis sister-in-law:  I'm sorry I didn't get a better shot, but Cliff and Don were swarming all over it and this was the best I could do.)

Heading back home, we wondered what those huge smokestacks in the distance were about.  Notice the blue skies have a few clouds in them now.

By the time we got past Harrisonville, Missouri, things weren't looking very promising.  We were moving right along until we saw police cars with blinking lights ahead, and the traffic stalled.

Oh brother.  This was not what we needed.  As we sat there waiting to be allowed past the wreck, I felt sprinkles on my face.

As we were allowed to move on, I took this brief video.  I know it looks as though night was falling, but it was 4:30 in the afternoon.  It's the clouds causing the darkness.  

I thought I was taking a video here, but the camera was set for "photo".  At this point I put my camera away because it started raining pretty hard.  Shortly after this we pulled into a gas station and put on our rain gear; by the time we got all decked out and ready for rain, it slowed to a sprinkle.  The rest of the ride home was enjoyable.  
To make a good day even better, as soon as we got in the house Cliff's sister called and invited us over to eat with her and her son.  So I didn't even have to worry about cooking supper!  


  1. smokestacks probably belong to La Cygne Power Plant
    we used to go fishing there

  2. Thanks, Meesha. I was counting on you to tell us about that.

  3. Sounds like a good day after all. Just a few sprinkles was a lot better than a long downpour. Helen

  4. You are very adventurous! We are used to the rain in WA, but not many of us have motorcycles for that reason. Our weather is too unpredictable!


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