My name is Stephen, but you can call me Sper (pronounced spear). I'm 25 years old and have called Chicago home for the last 3 years. Before that, I went to undergrad at Taylor University in central Indiana and grew up outside Grand Rapids, MI. I'm a nerd by training and career, with a degree in Computer Science and a few years doing consulting and custom web application development (that's making websites to all you non-techie folks). I started riding motorcycles when I moved to Chicago and have found a new passion in my life. I started taking more long weekend tours on bikes and found a lot of pleasure in doing so, with the only problem being that I didn't have enough time to see and do everything I wanted. What was the best way to remedy that? I found my answer -- quit the great job I have and leave for 6+ months! So that's what I did. My last day at work was 7/15/10. The next few weeks were spent relaxing, prepping my KLR650 (his name is Oscar -- the grouch), seeing friends, taking a couple of extended camping test rides on the bike to situate all of my gear, and procrastinating on leaving to start my trip. The plan for the trip is to head to the Northwest US for a couple of weeks to see the sights, then to Colorado for an HU meeting, then down to Mexico and Central America the first or second week of September. If I'm still loving the trip in Guatemala, I'll start considering going to South America, but I don't want to commit to that just yet. After delaying my start date a 3rd time, this time because a replacement part for my GPS was shipped incorrectly, I finally decided I was done waiting around. After some great customer service from Garmin in Chicago, I was able to find the part I needed, which I installed right away, packed the bike, and hit the road.