|Put a few new stickers on my new helmet|
I decided on the blog today because our trip was almost more of a "business" trip, so we don't have any good pictures to share. I would say that's the biggest disadvantage to riding my own motorcycle vs. being a "hubby hugger" is that I can't snap pics while we're riding down the road. David tried to get some GoPro footage, but the wind on Friday was No Joke. In fact, I'd say it was literally the most windy day we've ridden in at all. It was crazy!
|The only makeup I wear when riding|
The weekend dawned almost frosty in the mornings, warming up to a crisp 60ish degrees. Basically, classic Spring weather. Our trip was to be an overnight Friday/Saturday one. It sort of came about on accident; I suggested last weekend that we needed a hotel room w/ a hot tub to come home to, and that planted the seed for an idea. We discussed a few overnight possibilities, but by mid week I'd already decided to scrap the idea. We have a HUGE trip planned for July ... and this is already almost April. So we need to save as much as we can in order to pull off what we have planned. My creative side, David, came up with an interesting route taking us to just outside Nashville, then up into areas of Kentucky we've never been to. We were planning to ride to Family Video stores.
You may be scratching your head wondering what is Family Video? Well, it's basically a smaller Blockbuster Video type chain. And yes, they're open and thriving ... the video rental business is NOT dead! And just why would we want to frequent such an establishment? David makes a little extra money here and there by buying and selling movie codes online. Family Video buys their movies from places like Wal Mart, so they pull all the codes out of the movies and actually sell them. David found out they have all kinds of sales on their codes, so he figured we could have the best of both worlds; an overnight trip w/ a hotel room and hot tub AND make a little extra money on the side. Count me in!
We both managed to swing getting off work on Friday by noon, so we raced home (not on motorcycles; remember those frosty mornings??) jumped on our bikes, and hit the road. Our plan was to make it to 2 of the stores before checking into our hotel for the night, then go eat, then indulge in the hot tub. Time was on our side, because we fell back an hour as we headed west. A lot of the route was Interstate, and it was CRAZY. The wind was blowing so hard, the majority of our conversation back and forth was "WHOA! This is CRAZY". Lol. I have finally gotten used to how much Khaleesi moves around at high speeds. When I had only a few thousand miles under my belt, the movement would cause my heart to be in my throat, and my hands would cramp from holding my grips so tight. Add in high winds, and the bike feels like she's literally dancing around underneath me. But my mind was in such a serene place, it was weird. I sat nice and tall, kept my hands relaxed on the grips, and twisted the throttle more than usual as we zoomed up and around the semi trucks. What was interesting is I can feel the movement in my hips and core, but when I look down at my hands, the handlebars are secure and stable, NO movement in my hands. That's why I've been able to store up my confidence, is that what I'm feeling isn't necessarily a bad thing. David was almost feeling it more than me because he said the fairing on the Chieftan was catching more wind than he used to feel on his Vulcan.
|Red Robin ... YUM!|
We finally got off and rode some state roads. The wind was marginally better, but definitely still there as these were 55/60 mph roads. I was thoroughly enjoying myself because much of the central plateau area is not area we're familiar with. The sheer rock formations and wide open fields gave me plenty to look at and soak in, and before I knew it, we were arriving at the first video store. I didn't go in to any of them. I grabbed my book (an oldie, but one I've never read; John Grisham's "The Pelican Brief"), grabbed my drink, and sprawled out on the curb next to the bikes. I was comfortable in my layers and just took off my leather jacket at the stops.
After David did his thing, we made our way out to Hendersonville, TN. We've been to Nashville several times, but always IN the city. And never on the motorcycles. Hendersonville is roughly half an hour from downtown, and it was fabulous. Very beautiful landscape, lots of newer stores and restaurants, and our hotel. Let me just say, our hotel was SO nice. It had the fanciest bathroom of any normal "chain" hotels we've ever stayed in. Nice brown and teal carpeting, a soothing and light scent, and crisp white coverlet on the bed; NOT the big, giant puffy things that normally cover the beds. We ate at a spot that used to be a favorite treat, Red Robin. I'm pleased to say it was super good; the one we have out here close to us is TERRIBLE. Bad service, filthy restaurant, and bad food :( We stuffed our faces and made our way to the hot tub. YESSSSSS ... :):)
|Fancy shower and fancy Kohler fixtures|
The next morning we went to none other than our favorite Cracker Barrel and hit the road up into Bowling Green, KY. This part of the ride wasn't much to talk about. We had fun seeing the different landscaping and areas. I got lots of reading done as David made it to 5 stores. Finally, around 5:15 central time he was done. We got serious about riding and found a few roads that were more curvy. KY has interesting state roads, because sometimes they turn into tiny little country routes with twists and curves and lots of farmland. Once we hit interstate, that pretty much ended our surface roads. The wind was better, but as the sun went down the temps were dropping and I was getting straight up cold. I held on to the bike and we roared through the twists and curves and ups and downs of I-40 E getting back into the Knoxville area. It is NOT just straight, flat interstate. It is very challenging to roar through at 80 mph up and down mountains and around curves on Interstate that mostly does not have any lighting. I kept my eyes always looking for potential problems and wildlife, but our angels rode with us and we made it home safe and sound and 100% problem free.
|A road/motorcycle trip favorite|
Our Indians are so ideal for what we do. My bike is finally perfectly set up for my preferences. My back doesn't get tired, my helmet doesn't get buffeted by the wind, and my knees don't hurt from only having pegs to rest my feet on. David's bike has GIANT saddlebags with lots of room for all my extras, and he is so comfortable on his, too. He did change out the seat that came stock on his bike for one that came stock on a Chieftan Elite, and he is much more comfortable. His stock seat was just too soft and didn't give him enough support. His new one is also soft, but it's supportive too. The only thing he needs now for 100% comfort is a heel shifter. That's what he's used to, and it's what he prefers. My bike is so beautifully neutral in all conditions. I can cruise at 85 mph up and down hills, and I can weave and twist through tight, no center line roads. She never hesitates, never gives me trouble, and the 120 mile limit on the gas tank is a PERFECT stopping point for getting off and stretching/getting a drink. Our bikes also spark up conversation everywhere we go, every ride, no exceptions. We're always thrilled to promote the brand, and to meet enthusiasts where ever we go. Looking forward to our next "business" trip ;)
|How we secured our bikes at the hotel. Just keeps honest people honest|