Gone Walkabout

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by HowlingMad, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Hey thanks Rob, I don't think I know about Butler maps yet, but I did find some if the finest riding I've seen on the east. Some really amazing roads down here.

    Thanks for riding along
    #21
  2. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Hobbes! Great to hear from you, and great point, I'll try to give a current location and maybe even a direction if possible. I'm not above letting someone buy me a beer along the way.
    #22
  3. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Just broke into Oklahoma this evening. Today finally warmed up and overall it was a spectacular day. Although it started at 42 then dropped to 36, it eventually came up to 80. It was the first day without thermal liners and electric vest or grips.

    The roads in Arkansas are really spectacular and I thoroughly enjoyed the ride. The bike seems to be enjoying the weather more too. The fuel economy was just as wild as the temperature today starting at 36 and eventually reaching 44 at times. I suspect there may be an issue though and need to find time to plug into the computer. The engine light stays on longer than I remembered. Funny thing about these types of trips is that you obsess about your machine and every little noise, vibration or smell becomes a focus. That or I have OCD.

    I'm currently in a little town called Disney,OK. Really, I couldn't make this stuff up. View from my campsite:
    [​IMG]

    Tomorrow I get to see the action packed Oklahoma again. I can hardly wait to wear the rubber from one side of my tires as I ride in a straight line for a full day while leaning dramatically to compensate for the constant wind. Yippee skippee.

    The short term goal is to head for Cimarron National Grassland in Kansas, someplace I've been trying to get to for a while.
    #23
  4. wvboy

    wvboy Been here awhile

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    I like the thought of a ride without schedules but I don't think the lower 48 is big enough to clear my little mind.

    Enjoy every minute of the trip, then write about it :D
    #24
  5. Nice_Rumble

    Nice_Rumble Long timer

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    John- I knew there was something I liked about you the first time we rode together at the Toys For Tots Adventure Bike Ride a few years ago, your sense of adventure. You're not alone with your spiritual restlessness as I think a lot of us think about just taking off into the unknown. You however are actually doing it despite a lot of soul searching and questioning. You will learn a lot about yourself on this trip and maybe even find what you are looking for. Thanks for taking us along with you. We've got your back. Be safe.
    #25
  6. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Hey Skip!:wave
    You know, I've been fighting a cold for two days(always fun being sick on the road), fighting the wind for 400 miles today and your comment really made my day.
    Thanks for the support.
    #26
  7. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Hypothetically speaking, what's the protocol for passing a firetruck? I mean one on the way to a fire, with lights on and all that. What if he was only doing 70, in Oklahoma which only has straight roads? Guess I was in a bigger hurry than him. The look on his face was priceless though.



    And in Oklahoma, if you want to go in a diagonal direction, say northwest, you can't. They severely frown upon anything that resembles a curve or turn. In fact this is the only way to do it in Oklahoma:
    [​IMG]

    Oh, and let's not forget the wind. It's a good thing gas is cheap here because between the boredom and the wind, I was down to 33mpg today.

    [​IMG]

    And to the Trip Gods; thanks so much for responding to my request for warmer temperatures. I really appreciate the enthusiasm you put into it, but I'm all set now. You can turn off the oven anytime please, thanks.

    [​IMG]

    Currently in Liberal, Kansas. Decided to treat myself to a hotel room since I'm still not feeling great. That, and I stink.

    Had lots of thoughts about job stuff that I wanted to get to tonight as well as compiling some footage from Skyline Drive, but I've simply run out of steam. More tomorrow I hope.


    Thanks for riding along, I needed the company today.
    #27
  8. Arek Kontrol

    Arek Kontrol Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2011
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    Ex-pat Poles in Adelaide Hills, South Australia
    Brilliant RR :clap
    Keep it coming man, lovin' it!
    #28
  9. BillNighSciGuy

    BillNighSciGuy n00b

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    With all the cold weather (before the 95F), feeling sick, and needing a hotel - It sounds a bit like an old winter trip I remember. Hopefully you won't have to park in any snowbanks soon. And don't chew your medicine.

    What has been your sleep spot tally so far (trail/offroad, campground, house, hotel)?
    #29
  10. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Oh, man that was a trip. No flat tires yet either. While shopping for cold medicine yesterday I noticed TheraChew (Theraflu when you don't have water) and it still made me shiver a bit.:loaded

    Last night was my first hotel, but I've been cheating and camping in state parks with all the luxuries like running water and toilets, although not always in the same place. Hopefully back country camping will get easier soon.
    #30
  11. Kamala

    Kamala Long timer

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    Roll (and Rock) on John, it's out there, you'll find it. Stay safe! :thumb
    #31
  12. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Yesterday I had a lot of very uninteresting miles to think about the real reason I'm out here; finding my next mission in life. I kept thinking about something a potential employer said to me on an interview a while back. I went to Singapore to look at a job as a project manager updating an oil rig in the gulf of Thailand. I'm not really a project manager per se, but the job looked really interesting.


    After spending about three or four days learning about the industry and going out to the rig to see the challenge I came back to the office and expressed my enthusiasm and interest in the job. The owner of the company, who is pretty clever dude, kept asking me how I like the industry. I knew from the question that the correct answer was that I love it, I pour kerosene on my pancakes and marinate my chicken in diesel. But the truth was that I don't really care. It's fascinating, it's new to me and I know nothing about it so it would be very challenging, I'd like that it adds another diverse element to an already eclectic resume, but I doubt it will be the last industry I work in.
    He's Swedish and a very direct kinda guy, I respect that. One thing he said has troubled me ever since though. He said, "you have to specialize in something, you can't be a generalist, otherwise you'll end up like me; useless." Funny thing is that this guy owns an oil rig making something like 6000 barrels of oil a day.


    The problem seems to be that everyone wants you to specialize in something, but I like being a little more of a generalist. I like having to rapidly learn something, and apply a very diverse background and set of skills to find new solutions to problems. It seems to me that it takes as much energy to learn 90% of something as it does to learn the remaining 10%. To say it another way, it takes as much energy to get an A- as it does to get from an A- to an A+. I'd rather be an A- in lots of areas than the best in just one. Life is short, learn and experience as much as you can, right?


    Now, I know what the Swede was looking for, and I'm happy and eager to learn to do the best job possible for his project, but I had to be honest with him and explain that I was very interested in the oil and gas industry, but it's just another industry and it's probably not as unique as people think it is. So many employers appear to want a candidate with a very narrow focus, someone who was born to be a cog that fits only their myopic view of what the role needs.


    I used to hire people based on attitude, enthusiasm ability to adapt. It created diverse teams that produced unique solutions and ran circles around our competition. The last company I worked for gave me the trust and freedom to manage as I saw fit and in return they had a group they were really proud of. But like the ronin, my master is dead, killed off in the 2008 economic downturn. Now I feel like I'm left with two options; 1)Like the some of the ronin, hire myself out to anyone willing to pay for my services and have little allegiance to anything more than a paycheck, or 2) Find a new master, one with a great problem that I can help with and pour myself into the mission. If I can't find option 2 soon, I'll have to resort to option 1 but there's something really vacant about that route.

    By the way, I would have taken that job, but the quality of life for spouses of ex-pats is fairly low and Bethany probably would not have stayed with me for the year that was required. Too bad though, it was a very interesting challenge.



    A couple of pictures from the Songkhla oil field, Gulf of Thailand.


    [​IMG]


    It's hot, damn hot. I feel like my head could burst into flames at any moment. [​IMG]
    #32
  13. BillNighSciGuy

    BillNighSciGuy n00b

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    Yes, you've got a real good, real long story to tell. It is a shame that the proper version of it is longer than most cover letters and interviews last. Perhaps in the infinite mind-time of your trip you can find the best way to make it as succinct and marketable as possible. A pretty darn good start there:

    #33
  14. prsdrat

    prsdrat Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    San Diego, CA
    Your statement about specializing vs. being a generalist reminds me of
    a point made by one of James Micheners characters in "The Drifters" .
    To paraphrase, he said something to the effect that one had to determine
    what he wanted to be before the age of thirty, otherwise he would just
    become a bum. By that definition I'm now a retired bum. But damned if
    I don't have a lot of useless eclectic skills. And I still want to learn.

    Give 'em hell.
    #34
  15. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Hey Kamala:wave Nice to to see a local in this thread. Hopefully see you at Beez's party again this year?
    #35
  16. Jedi5150

    Jedi5150 Road Warrior

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    Jul 9, 2007
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    Central California
    Nice ride report John! Thanks for taking us along on your adventures and journey.



    I knew that these two looked familiar. Very nice couple. I chatted with them for a bit while we both waited on our Corbin seats to get made at Corbin, in Holister, CA (Well, mine was being made and Sarah's was getting an adjustment). They are on quite the adventure of their own (or were about to be when I ran into them). It's incredible how small a world it is.


    #36
  17. HowlingMad

    HowlingMad drags knuckles

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    Thanks for following along
    #37
  18. BTBW 01

    BTBW 01 BTBW 01

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    SOUTH OZ
    I understand where your coming from,
    like many of us,
    Your a Biker and live to ride.
    Enjoy & thanks for sharing.:thumb
    #38
  19. Nice_Rumble

    Nice_Rumble Long timer

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    Excellent video John! Creatively shot and edited. Right there you have a future!
    #39
  20. RTLLTR

    RTLLTR RotoTiller!

    Joined:
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    Hmmm..................:wave

    Keep it coming OCD boy! Oh yeah also please hurry home so we can ride some dirty stuff!
    #40