...until I buy a donorcycle.
Relax, not this weekend. But I've been thinking about it for about ten years, and now I've known people who've ridden that long, and also now that I have a lot more bikers in my social group, I have a better appreciation for the benefits of safe riding techniques, good gear, etc, etc. So....I'm still thinking about it.
The weather was beauuuuuuutiful in NC today. Cool, clear, gorgeous fall day. Garth and Larry had been planning a ride today, and I half-jokingly invited myself along. Until they both were like, "Um, yeah, why don't you come with us?"
So, I did.
They warned me it was going to be long. I said, okay. They warned me it was likely to be fast at times. I said, great. We devised a plan for how to find me if I got lost. They suited up, I opened the sunroof and rolled down all the windows. And off we went.
We had a hell of a good time.
The drive was absolutely gorgeous. I'm hoping we can do that again in a couple of weeks when the fall colors have really developed (I may try to con my way onto the back of someone's bike for that, actually, but the Jeep really was excellent). The roads were a little twisty and the countryside was quaint and it was very pleasant.
We ended up at this lake, first driving across the dam that held the lake in. It was incredible. The view was absolutely spectacular. We stopped for a while to admire the view, and in the midst of that whole sitting out looking at the lake thing, I commented, "I didn't even know we had a dam."
Garth said, "Virginia has a dam."
Hmm, well, good for Virginia, I thought, kind of wondering what that had to do with anything. We enjoyed the scenery for a bit longer and then saddled back up, and were off again until we got lost. This ultimately entailed pulling off at a visitor's center (that was closed, but the boys TOTALLY got credit for stopping to ask directions) and fussing with my GPS, which Larry was messing around with and got somewhat discombobulated so I took it back and hit the "My Current Location" button. And made quite a discovery.
"SonofaBITCH!" It suddenly dawned on me. "We really ARE in Virginia!!"
They both looked at me like, um, yeah. Don't you remember the big "Welcome to Virginia" sign??
Totally missed the sign. Apparently saw the one next to it that said radar detectors were illegal, but missed the giant one announcing I was passing into a whole different state.
We made a pit stop shortly after that revelation as one of the bikes needed filling up and all three of us needed draining, so we stopped at this little gas 'n' go kind of place. So I walk into the little general store, and of course the first thing you see coming through the door was the display of ammunition, fireworks, and liquor. There was also a large tub full of minnows and fishing poles hanging from the ceiling. It was...quite an experience.
This led to more fun being poked at the city girl, of course...
But we made it back and the drive back was also just as lovely. We stopped at a local place for beers and a late lunch (since it was about 4pm by this point) and some good conversation.
I finally made it to the gym after that, came home, spent a really long time trying to comb the knots out of my hair from having the windows open in the car, and then made my way back to Jen and Bill's. Maggie got to come too, and she and Eddie had a wonderful time running around and exploring the backyard. Jen, Bill, Leigh, Garth, Garth's son, and I sat around the fire pit and enjoyed the crackling fire and the yummy, yummy s'mores, and a couple of other friends joined us later. Once again, good time, good company, good conversation. And, of course, chocolate.
One thing (of many) that I love about this circle of friends is that, you know, I see them every single morning. You'd think that, being in the different life situations, different occupations, and being from different backgrounds that we wouldn't have that much to say to one another. But we can still do things like spend an entire day together and still look forward to seeing each other at the coffee shop in the morning.
It's good. It's really, really good.