Last Tuesday opened with blue skies and temperatures lingering near the 70-degree mark. For a moment January had been put on hold, and after a long working weekend at the Pennsylvania Farm Show, I escaped.
I picked up a trickle charger a few weeks ago in order to maintain the battery and up my chance to get out and ride on a day like this. Thirty dollars well spent. After six weeks sitting idle, the slash-7 started on the first try.
The road conditions were good, but varied in dryness depending on how long the surface spent in the sun. Corners were quick when the surface was dry, but a wet and oily sheen coated them if they sat in the shade all day. I remained cautious.
This was the first time I took the bike off the paved road. A road of gravel and dirt mix between the backside of the airport and Fisherman’s Paradise gave me a new appreciation of the words ‘flat’ and ‘dry.’ Speeds slow, awareness increases, and every little pothole is cause for concern.
Slowing down brings the landscape into perspective. The temptation to stop every quarter-mile to make a photograph is hard to resist. I am beginning to understand Steve Williams’ love of the Vespa and the way in which it has opened his appreciation for the passing landscape (Sorry Steve, I’m still not buying one).
The cold has settled in again, and I don’t see any relief in sight. The long range forecast remains in January mode. It looks like the warm weather won’t be around for a while. Time to hunker down and chip away at everything I’ve been putting off until winter.