Sunday, March 28, 2010

Italian Bob

Although Mr. Wilson got me started on this blog business, he doesn't post much anymore, so every once in a while I feel the need to post about the things Bob is up to. Some of you know this, but about a month ago, Bob bought a motorcycle.

Its a Moto Guzzi Breva 750 and he has been enjoying it and riding it quite a bit. I'm guessing that he is approaching 1000 miles in the month he has had it, which is pretty good since it was still raining for the first couple of weeks. This is a picture of Bob's actual bike from the dealer's website before he bought it.

As he says, its very interesting to have a motorcycle that likes to turn. The bike is great around town and very good on the twisty secondary roads, but is a little small for high speed, long trips.

I'm happy that he found something unique in character and so very Italian. His garage must be very interesting with the Breva parked along side his Beck Spyder and his Alfa Spider. Nice going Bob.

This picture is a nice view but not Bob's bike and has a few farkles that he hasn't gotten to, yet.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Gratuitous Yosemite Pictures

I finally got my camera back and could upload some pictures.

Now that I'm back home, I'll try to get some thoughts together on my time in California.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Yosemite, the 30+ year difference

More than 30 years ago, I graduated from college, accepted my first "real" job, and decided to take a month off before starting that job. My idea was to explore the country in my little Austin Healy Sprite and to visit friends from college who had dispersed across the country. Somewhere in this adventure, I visited Yosemite, enjoyed the roads, took some pictures, and was on the next adventure. Although beautiful, I never told many stories of Yosemite, in part because it didn't seem all that adventurous.

All those years that I lived in California, I never made it back to Yosemite. Now 12 years after leaving California, I've been back.

So what's different after 30+ years? Well, the trees are a little taller.

Just kidding. How about, I have a better camera?

How about going there in winter (February) when the snow is gorgeous and the crowds are smaller.

The smell is wonderful. You can't beat the smell of a damp forest and melting snow running into a brook.

The problem 30 years ago was that it was a little too pretty, a little too civilized and controlled. At least I had a little British sports car with the top down and that I never knew when it was going to break down to provide adventure. Now we all wear designer outdoor gear, drive in reliable SUVs or vans loaded with every creature comfort. We have become a National Parks Poster version of ourselves and it makes me sad that we don't embrace risk the way we used to.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Not Me!

You'd never catch me trying anything like this. Thanks to Doug for passing it along. Enjoy the video.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Helmet Hair, itch, itch, itch

One of the major distractions of motorcycle touring is that, after the first couple of hours, the hair on my forehead begins to itch and there is a nagging desire to stop, take off my helmet, and scratch. I guess its the being bent backwards at the roots or the motion of the helmet relative to my head over time.

I also know that its the shape of my helmet. My old HJC was a little tight in the forehead and I'm sure the extra pressure didn't help the blood circulation. The new Shoei is a little better, but I still had itch in the Shoei after a time.

This weekend, I may have come across a potential cure. I have been travelling for more than 6 weeks now and my last haircut was last year. This is the longest my hair has been since long hair was fashionable in the 70's. So last weekend, using my old HJC helmet (thank you, John), I rode for 5 hours with occasional stops. The long hair folded straight down into my face and, amazingly, no itch.

Now others have done the shaved head thing and I suppose that would work too, but I'm not ready for that.

August, 2011 Update

I don't usually pass on commercial interest comments, but the comment on M-Gen is interesting. Looks like a scientific approach to the problem of helmet itch. I haven't tried it. It's kind of pricey and has to be shipped from England, but it is interesting enough to pass along.