Talk about a double whammy this week. Leah and I are prepping for #HOGWild17 and this is the last week with all of our kids for the summer.
It’s been an incredible month, as it’s been every year when we switch to a month and month schedule. Obviously the joy of unity transitions into the pain of being apart. I fly my youngest son back to New Orleans on Friday, so this is the last full day he has with us. The rest of the kids bug out Friday night.
To tell you that my focus has been on this cross-country trip would not be telling you the truth. I’ve not packed or even kicked stuff into a pile yet. Fortunately, I’d developed what I call a switch during my years of working undercover and SWAT. It allows me to immediately transition from one environment to the next without being tethered to what I’d just experienced.
This switch will flip once I head back on the return flight after hugging and kissing my boy goodbye. By the time TSA sees me slip through without luggage, I’ll be planning our departure on the Harley Davidson for Saturday. If you’d like to connect and come along on our adventure, please CLICK HERE
I did however bring the Ultra Limited into the shop at Longhorn Harley Davidson this week for service. Leah made sure to have a cup holder installed for her. It’s so big, she could slide an ice chest in it.
I was talking to one of the guys at the service desk who had made many pilgrimages across this country. He wished me a safe trip, so I asked him if he had any last-minute advice. He grinned, “Keep it upright.”
Speaking of Leah, she is the planner. While I’ve always taken off with one extra undies and bathing suit, she actually likes to know where we’ll sleep and when we’ll get back home. It works out wonderfully. But, at the expense of her prep work, she likes to buy just about everything based on recommendations for our 6,000 mile trek. We’ve purchased everything from beef jerky to pure air bottles.
On a side note, we discovered those last December while in Dunton Hot Springs, Colorado. We were at about 9,000 foot elevation for the week and never acclimated to it. Snowshoeing, snowmobiling and simply walking to supper exhausted us. They are actual cans of air. It looks like bug spray, but what the heck. It beats altitude sickness swirling along the backside of Montana mountains.
Anyway, I saw a giant pile of black, orange and leather shoved in front of our bed. I asked Leah what it was, and she said it was for the trip. Unless she’s going to wear it all, all of the time, there is no room. After all, we need the bottles of air, right?
We always go through the same routine of piling up everything short of the kitchen sink. Then we start weeding out duplicates, and then unnecessaries, and finally we try cutting to the bone. When we’re limited to two hard saddlebags, a touring trunk and a bungie-strapped duffel bag, you have to cut into that proverbial packing bone.
Basics such as rainsuits and jackets take up lots of room, but can’t be left behind. Planning for weather that will range from one hundred plus, down into the thirties also requires layers along with versatile overcoats. We’ve each got a favorite leather jacket, but they’re too bulky for the trip.
Now to the topic of cold feet. I guess on an occasion or two I’ve stopped to think about the reality of living on the road for 21 days. The limited resources and unplanned stopping points. I’ve also considered that I’ve never driven a motorcycle up or down a mountain or high elevation roadways. I cycled up and down mountains in several 100 mile bicycle races, but never on a motorbike.
Leah has been showing pictures of the epic roads we’ll be travelling. The curves and switchbacks are amazing. But as I told her, I’m basically pretty good at going straight. We’ll see how it all works out. Like her, I just want to ensure we have a safe and fun adventure.
I’m never one to draw back, but I also realize the last time I was consistently logging hard miles on a motorcycle was about 20 years ago. My body and my butt were much tougher back then. I’m sure ibuprofen will be in ample supply. Our goal is to cover ground, but at a pace that allows us to enjoy the journey. Typically I say that, but I can’t live by it. I love to push it.
So with two days left and zero packing started, we’d appreciate any words of encouragement!!!
We’re posting on social media as we go, and will attempt regular articles on this site. We’d appreciate you coming along with the hashtag #HOGWild17, and also signing up for the latest in our adventures by CLICKING HERE.
If you see this face, smiling or exhausted, please say hello, or I will. Either way, it’s always fun to meet new folks on trips and connect with friends.
I hope you enjoyed Motorcycle Cross Country Is Almost Here: No Cold Feet, Right? Please feel free to Like and Comment below.