And the jackets and helmets were for?
Well, you see, it's like this. Mrs, who does this work on sick
folks and those who come in paralyzed from motorcycle accidents
still likes to ride on the back of my Harley.
However, a cruiser, my bike is not, and with the last child leaving
to go off to college in just a year, I hear the road calling.
And yes, that's a Honda down there, newly redesigned, sleek and
all that. And the price is kind-of right, at least relative to a
similar Harley, seeing how it's about 8 to 10 thousand dollars less.
But here's the rub. The 2002 last year's model that has a price
that got me into the store has to be purchased, without being ridden.
"You heard me Mr., and I don't care that Honda says you can
test ride a 2002 Goldwing. Not at this store. You want a test ride?"
"Find someone who has a bike and borrow it."
Uh huh. Right.
You all want sixteen thousand dollars for something that I can't
drive. And besides that, what if Mrs doesn't like the ride on the
Too bad buddy. Buy it or leave.
But I also know that folks can be a little less uptight outside
of the metropolitan area, so before the track meet I called and
asked if we could do the demo thing. "Sure" the guy said,
"but you won't buy it here in Grand Rapids."
"People just don't do those kind of things. But you are welcome
to come over and try the bike."
"Does it count that I am driving my 3rd Chevy purchased from
Berger Chevrolet right there in Grand Rapids? And I bought em all
But anyhow, just as we drove up to the dealer, I saw a hot yellow
bike drive out and I pointed and said, "There it goes."
Unfortunately, I was right, as the dealer had just closed for the
The salesman I spoke with was there however, and we chatted for
a few minutes and he let us sit on one of the bikes in the darkened
The next chance we will have for a demo will be in about 3 and
a half weeks, but then only for a brief moment, as MRS and I trade
places at the lake shore, because she will be off to Europe to retrieve
her daughter and all.
But you never know, even though the practical in me says that it's
best to wait another year at least, the irked in me might just go
out and buy a nice new bike while mom and daughter are cruising
from Spain to Italy.
(phots from www.hondamotorcycles.com)
Slightly disappointed at the the loss of our "demo" wheels,
and encouraged by a sunny day, we decided to head on over to Lake
Michigan and the small town of South Haven.
Mrs had discovered it some time last fall and wanted me to see
the town, the light house, and the great beaches.
Remember the wind thing?
When we pulled into town and got really close to the water, I rolled
down the car windows while I was stopped at a light. Big mistake.
The temperature had dropped almost 20 degrees and all of a sudden,
thoughts of a nice walk on the beach in the sun were blown away.
I put some money in the meter at the deserted parking lot and got
out of the car so I could open the back doors and get my windbreaker.
I zipped it up over my sweatshirt and headed down to the pier, camera
bag in hand.
I think my trip lasted some thirty or forty steps and I returned
to the car. I opened the rear hatch, took off the wind breaker and
grabbed my leather riding jacket. Over that I put the wind breaker,
and then I pulled the hood tight. I also grabbed the mono-pod (single
pole on which you support a camera) and headed on down toward the
By the time I caught up to Mrs the right side of my pants were
soaked and the camera was thrust inside of my jacket. In just moments
I was chilled to the bone but there was a certain excitement to
the place that made one want to stay and watch and watch.
The lighthouse is part of two piers through which a river empties
quite a ways out into the lake. There was no way that anyone could
walk out onto the right hand pier, but I took the shot of this sign
for two reasons. First of all it gives a bit of perspective of the
boiling sea, and second, it gives you a point of reference for a
couple of shots, because I stood behind the sign on my side of the
pier so as to try and hide some from the wind.
Yes, proceed at your own risk.
Go ahead, wash yourself off into the 40 degree water.
Click click click click
Erasable images are great. I keep the good ones, and throw the
After I shot close to 50 images Mrs suggested that we drive up
the river a bit and cross over to the beach on the other side. She
wanted to eat, but I told her there was no way I was going to miss
getting something from the next series.
Did I mention that there were 3 or 4 surfers out on the left side
of the pier?
Well they were out there, and I promise you, that at 5:00 on this
day when the outside air was about 48 degrees and the wind was blowing
close to 30 knots, they were out there, and doing some impressive
No how, no way.
Photo shoot ended with a search for just the right place to eat.
Even though it was cold and the town seemed half deserted, there
was a slight wait at Clementines
so I was asked if I would like to see spouse's favorite hotel just
one block over.
So as we walk in, it's not just, I'd like to show my husband your
hotel, but "do you have any rooms for the night?"
I kind of frowned, because I really like my own bed, and it seemed
like it would be a long time before the sun got low enough on the
horizon to entice me to stay.
The inn was quaint, but I was not in the mood for "light soundproofing"
which I was sure would be the case in an hundred year old building.
We thanked the hostess and told her we would eat and then check
The food was great, and so was the beer.
All of a sudden a two and a half hour drive home started looking
long in the tooth.
And besides, soon the sun would be setting.
Although the wind was a bit subdued, I have to tell you, that I
was wearing gloves in addition to the hooded double jacket get-up
that I adorned. Gloves. The next day is June 1, and I'm wearing
gloves to keep my fingers from freezing there on the edge of the
Suddenly the light started to fade quickly, as the sun dipped into
a thick haze. In just moments it slid through a group of clouds
and disappeared, never making it down to the water in front of the
That doesn't really bother me though, I think I've got an image
or two here that I may even make into prints.
That's the way it is with sunsets, you never know when the lights
go out early.
We packed up, and started to head out of town, for we had spent
some 30 minutes checking into 5 or 6 Bed and Breakfasts spots to
find them either not yet open for the season, or full for the night.
On the way out of the parking lot Mrs suggested that we check out
"one last place" on the way down the bluff.
"I think it's only about 5 minutes south of town."
Great memory, but being allergic to mold sent her running from
the first room we were shown.
"What about the new building there? Can we seen what rooms
you have there?
"Those rooms cost quite a bit more than the one you were looking
at, but I do have one with a Jacuzzi tub and a fireplace and a king
So we looked and then she asked if we could see the cheaper one,
regular room, no Jacuzzi, queen beds.
I asked for a discount and did get an offer of 10% off for either
I told the lady I'd take the one on the end of the building, second
floor, overlooking the lake.
Spouse raised her eyebrows because of the price. Mr "I don't
want to spend the money when I've got a great bed at home"
had just hauled out his wallet big time.
"Trust me" I said, "it's the better choice."
Like the ad says, there are those priceless things in life.
And sometimes ya just gotta whip out the plastic to get there.
And it was....
You'll just have to trust me on that one.