2 Aussies, 2 bikes and a 3 month lap of USA!

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Terry & Janelle, Feb 4, 2017.

  1. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

    Joined:
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    That’s odd. You ought to have had some action. I’ll take a look at the ad.
  2. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

    Joined:
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    craigslist ad looks great. Perhaps that it is now the last week of October you'll get some action. It may be beneficial to remove that timeline information now.
    Terry & Janelle likes this.
  3. Terry & Janelle

    Terry & Janelle Two Aussie riders planning a 3 month tour of USA

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2017
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    We have had some interest in craigs list. But insultingly low.

    Spoke to a dealer today and another one tomorrow and we do have commission options, just need to haggle over prices and fees.

    Also had a few pm's with similar options so we will follow them up too.

    So bottom line is we still have 2 bikes but we also have options.

    Thanks everyone.
  4. bonneville53

    bonneville53 kiwi

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    newcastle nsw aus
    After such a fantastic trip (mainly hassle free) any monies recouped V the cost of rentals. I think you will be smiling all the way to the Big Island
    And continue to do same for many years
    Don't sweat the small shit
    Don't count your money before you leave the table
    New balance of power in Canberra. Liberals fucked up big time. Wentworth goes to Independent lesbian. See what happens when you go on holiday.
    Thanks for the write up, I know it digs into riding time, but it has been appreciated by many.
    black top bob likes this.
  5. holckster

    holckster dougholck Supporter

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Lodi, Ca
    Post a separate report here on Trip Planning regarding end of trip and Moto's For Sale.
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  6. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2005
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Villa Maria Sanitarium, Claremont, CA. USA
    This is a great idea. You May get some incoming Internationals. I generally get a few planning to head south at this time.....mid November is prime Baja time. Funny thing.....have had only one enquiry for a bike since July.
  7. Terry & Janelle

    Terry & Janelle Two Aussie riders planning a 3 month tour of USA

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Days 38, 39 and 40: 14th to 16th September. New York (part 2) and we head south.


    Well hello stranger and thanks for hanging in there. Apologies about the radio silence but since the last post everything just got more hectic, the weather turned against us, adventuring got serious, days got harder and finding time to write just completely disappeared.

    But that’s all changed now. Yesterday we consigned our wonderful bikes, our homes for the last 10 weeks and the only reliable constants is this story, to a dealer in Palm Springs. We picked up a boring as batsh*t hire car, collected our suitcases from James in Claremont and will shortly relocate to an Airbnb in west Los Angeles to serve out our last few days on the USA mainland. “Serve out” is the most apt term I can find because although we’re sitting by the pool in some semi-forgettable hotel in Pasadena, we are both wishing… longing… that we were back out there on the road, heading off to somewhere, or anywhere, or even nowhere, but here. Our achievement is slowly dawning on us, but for now there’s still quite a sense of loss. This was our first morning in more than 10 weeks that those 2 bikes weren’t waiting for us to load up and ride away. There’ll be time later for the pride that will come with the memories. But right now it’s all just a little bit empty.

    But at least now there is time to try and catch up with the story.

    And so you’ll recall the sun set on my significant birthday in New York by playing Imagine in tribute to John Lennon and a twilight walk through Central Park.

    Well we awoke on the 14th September, our 3rd and final day in Manhattan, to threatening skies… and a plan. Trust me, if you’re in NYC a plan is essential.

    Along with half of humanity we just had to do that (in)famous walk over Brooklyn Bridge. Please don’t ask me why, there’s no logic to subjecting yourself to that torture, which indeed we did.

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    The subway took us to Brooklyn and from there we walked the mile or so to the pedestrian start. They’ve built a walkway above the traffic which is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because nobody dies but a curse because there’s no movement control whatsoever. And everyone, yes including us, needs to take a whole bunch of photos. Although I must say we didn’t feel the need to stop every 5 paces for a dozen selfies as hundreds of younger females from those places north of Australia needed to.

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    In fact, despite the craziness, or maybe because of it, the little jaunt turned out to be rather epic. Certainly a must do and certainly something we wouldn’t have missed, even with knowing what awaited us. The entire crossing back into Lower Manhattan took about an hour which I suppose wasn’t too bad really. And we even avoided the mini tourist cities that were camped at both ends selling every imaginable shape and size of mass produced junk to the mass produced hordes. We didn’t need to, we had a much more significant NYC memory planned for our last night.



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    Not too far from the end of Brooklyn Bridge is one of those discount theatre ticket outlets. We found our way there and lined up, planning to see the acclaimed Book of Morman. However, understandably, that show doesn’t do discount tickets. So instead we decided to help the universe deliver Janelle her new motorcycle boots (ordered 3 days earlier on the internet) to arrive before we left, and we settled on the Broadway hit Kinky Boots.

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    Tickets were secured at a very favourable price (thanks Jock and Elizabeth) and so we took ourselves shopping. Hey Calvin Klein jeans for $35… Wouldn’t you? Janelle picked up a 2 pairs of blingy sandals which unfortunately didn’t turn out to be as comfortable as they seemed. But I get ahead of myself.

    Now the problem with trying to walk the streets of lower Manhattan, is that they were never designed with that in mind. Tall buildings, narrow roads and the 2 million+ humans that travel in there every day, just don’t play together that well. It’s an overcrowded chaotic mess, straining at the seams. But it is also exactly what it is. It’s Manhattan. Arguably the most well-known city in the world.

    But then again, it could all just be a great big theme park and we are all just entrants on a pay for play thrill ride. I’m not sure the difference is that great really.

    Anyway, we finally escaped back to the tranquillity of Jersey City to prepare for the evening. Two highlights were in store. First was our shout for dinner with Rich and Flavia to thank them for their incredible generosity. The second was the Cyndi Lauper scored Broadway show..



    And we arrived back to the apartment to a wonderful surprise. Janelle’s very own brand new kinky boots were waiting for us. You know we just had to take a photo.

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    We were going to finish in style, guaranteed. Just one small concern… we’d invited our dinner guests to choose the restaurant and we were maybe a tiny bit worried about the potential effect on our bank account. Ok, maybe a little more than a tiny bit… because… Manhattan, New York, New York.

    As it turned out they were very kind to us and chose a lovely seafood restaurant on the Hudson shoreline aptly named Pier A. However, we misunderstood the walking distance and Janelle’s pretty new sandals started to wear holes in her feet. Unfortunately, there was a lot worse to come but we hadn’t realised that yet. Dinner was just gorgeous, the setting very New York and the bill rather favourable considering. A truly wonderful way to kick off the evening. Sadly we had to break it off and hurry away for the uptown train where Broadway awaited us. The timing was very tight and it was a very fast walk from 42nd Street Station to the Al Hirschfeld Theatre on Broadway. We made the show with about 5 minutes to spare and then received a huge surprise. Not only had these so called discounted tickets delivered us the front row, but we also had a perfect view of the band. We could see every bead of sweat on the stage, but could also watch the band playing everything under it. I really didn’t know where to look half the time! So I kinda shared my time a little either way and picked up a few professional tips and tricks that I’ll be subjecting the band to when we get back.

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    Kinky Boots was totally incredible and we highly recommend it. I’m not sure where it’s playing in Oz, but if you get a chance, then do yourself a favour.

    Afterwards we decided on the short walk up to Times Square for a final dose of NYC. It sure lived up to its reputation. Just completely over the top, huge screens everywhere, a dozen languages spoken in every direction, street sellers, scammers and roadworks right in the middle.

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    We took a photo or two, bought a hot dog and decided a glass of champagne was the right way to finish this chapter of our adventure. But it had to be right, had to be iconic, so luckily Ruby Tuesdays loomed out of the glare and we found ourselves at the bar, glasses in hand, toasting each other. That’s a little strange I know but it felt that we deserved it.

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    By now Janelle had realised her new sandals had chewed her feet up rather badly. We took photos but I’ll spare you the details. Let’s just say that new footwear and a long walks around the night spots of NYC don’t go together too well. Bandaids and betadine would become a daily 20 minute routine for the next few weeks. Just the thing when you’re trying to break in new motorcycle boots. Not!

    After a drink, a final look around and another toast to adventuring, suddenly it was done. We escaped the masses, found the subway and with a few hops made it back to the Oculus and the train to Jersey. And just to confirm… that “City that never sleeps” thing. Naaa, it’s crap. Lower Manhattan at midnight on a Friday night is a ghost town. Really it is!

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    And with that our visit to Manhattan was done.

    The next day we got ourselves ready to move on, visited the quarterly Jersey City street fair which was fun, wrote some of this blog, and just generally took it easy. Then just before 5.30 we walked down to the Hudson again and took in the sunset. Surprisingly the sun had actually come out and we were treated to this most spectacular sight of the Manhattan skyline reflecting a stunning golden hue. It was just about as good as it gets.

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    And it was certainly the right way for us to close this chapter. Now we turn south, about as far south as possible actually. We expected to hit New Orleans in a couple of weeks.

    And so next morning, Sunday (so we miss the traffic) we packed the bikes up, said our goodbyes to our amazing hosts and on a whim decided to ride over to Liberty Park and also farewell that old lady with the torch. The “no motor vehicles” sign was duly ignored, we rode up to the edge of the walk way and took a few photos. A final gear check and then, in perfect weather we hit the road on a kind of loop route to Washington DC via Gettysburg.

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    It felt really good to be back on the bikes again and out helmet intercoms were full of happy chatter as we rode the rather uneventful, easy and fun day with a little highlight thrown in along the way. As we rode through a little town called Whitehouse in New Jersey we clocked over 10,000 kms and stopped for a quick photo to remember it.

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    A few hours later we arrived in Gettysburg on one of those gorgeous late summer evenings, had an outdoor meal in the centre of town and then found the Artillery Ridge Campground. We set up camp just on dark and turned in early, well satisfied and loving this adventure we were on.

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    We had decided on a little civil war exploration in the morning. Unfortunately Hurricane Florence had a sting in her tail and we woke to threatening skies and a forecast of heavy rain for 2 days.

    I suspected this rain was actually training us for bigger things to come.

    Unfortunately my suspicions were going to be proved correct.
  8. MapleRoad

    MapleRoad Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
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    Such a journey, guys! I can't wait to see the rest of the posts!
    black top bob likes this.
  9. Terry & Janelle

    Terry & Janelle Two Aussie riders planning a 3 month tour of USA

    Joined:
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    Canberra, Australia
    20181101_144419.jpg Hi everyone.
    We've now left the USA mainland and are recovering in Hawaii for 3 days.

    I'll finish our blog and everything as soon as I can and we really hope you will all keep in touch now that our USA Adventure is over.

    Fyi, those of you who have our phone numbers. They will shortly stop working.

    You'll get us in Australia on +61 409 652 099

    Thanks for all your amazing generosity, assistance, guidance and just everything.

    We really hope we will see many of you again and that one day you allow us to return the favour for you in our wonderful country.

    Stay safe out there!
    And thank you America.

    Terry and Janelle.
  10. MapleRoad

    MapleRoad Been here awhile Supporter

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    There's nothing quite like Hawaii, my friends. Relax and enjoy. And relax some more.
    holckster likes this.
  11. rkover1

    rkover1 doc

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2006
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    Location:
    Kailua-Kona,Hawai'i, USA
    Aloha! Enjoy Hawai'i while you're here. Safe travels home!

    doc
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  12. Terry & Janelle

    Terry & Janelle Two Aussie riders planning a 3 month tour of USA

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    269
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Enjoy Hawaii....?
    Hmmmm....

    So while we were yachting off Waikiki...

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    2018-11-02_17-47-11_HDR.jpg 2018-11-02_17-22-30_HDR.jpg
  13. MapleRoad

    MapleRoad Been here awhile Supporter

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    Hey, tell Kevin to put on his life preserver!
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  14. holckster

    holckster dougholck Supporter

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    Bummer the weather wasn't better for sailing, the water is all ripply.

    What a great ending for your trip.
    black top bob likes this.
  15. Terry & Janelle

    Terry & Janelle Two Aussie riders planning a 3 month tour of USA

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Goodbye America.
    Thanks for everything, even including your shitty weather.
    Nothing worthwhile comes easy so that made it extra special.

    Now you all have to come and play down under.

    See you on the other side.

    2018-11-05_09-13-40_HDR.jpg
  16. Geezerguy

    Geezerguy In the shadows

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    Base of Mt Princeton
    Thanks for visiting. Come again anytime and we’ll try to do better with the weather. :D
  17. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2005
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Villa Maria Sanitarium, Claremont, CA. USA
    Weather was awesome all three months on the west coast!
  18. black top bob

    black top bob gray goat Supporter

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    It was fun following your thread. Good on ya. Go Collingwood. BTB
  19. Terry & Janelle

    Terry & Janelle Two Aussie riders planning a 3 month tour of USA

    Joined:
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    Canberra, Australia
    Finally got the time to bust out another chapter...
    https://terryjanelleinternational.com/days-41-42-and-a-half-17th-to-19th-september-washington-dc/

    NOVEMBER 21, 2018 BY TERRY & JANELLE

    Days 41, 42 and a half: 17th to 19th September. Washington DC.
    And so the plans for our little self guided exploration of Civil War Gettysburg were washed away but luckily we had found some decent coffee and were able to gear up and waterproof everything before it started raining properly. Then it was only a matter of working out how to escape through the crazy rabbit warren of narrow streets, in pouring rain, with a GPS screen that was virtually impossible to see. It took a lot longer than it should have and probably quite a few more choice words then were intended but before too long we found ourselves turning onto another of those interstates heading towards the home of our next ADV Rider host.

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    It only took an hour or so before we cruised slowly up his street and spotted the open garage with 2 bikes parked inside. Adventure motorcycles are so rare in US that you only need to see one to know you’re in the right place. We pulled into the garage and out of the rain just as Bob appeared through the internal door to greet us. A quick photo, a careful unpack and about 20 minutes later our soaking wet riding gear was hanging up drying and we had changed into dry, warm clothes and were sitting upstairs with our new host sharing adventure travel stories. Then, as the rain pelted the windows we ate lunch and made plans for our visit to the heart of it all, Washington DC.

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    Bob gave us a rundown on how to navigate the subway, or Metro here, which key stations to look out for and all that basic info. And then he most generously offered to drive us the 20 minutes to the station so we could catch a train into the city. He even loaned us two umbrellas which we were soon to be so very thankful for.

    It was that not too much later we emerged from the Smithsonian Metro station up onto the Washington Mall. The sky was very threatening but for the moment at least it was only a slight drizzle. To our right was the Capitol Building, to our left the great needle they call the Washington Monument and beyond the most well-known of all, the Lincoln memorial. We decided to go left and take a slow meandering route down past the WW2 Memorial and Reflecting Pool. We hadn’t gone far when the small rain break ended and the sky opened with a vengeance. We made it to the Korean War Veterans Memorial but our attempt to get over to the Roosevelt Memorial was met with another torrential downpour. We gave up and made a very tenuous run for the only dry place in sight, the Lincoln Memorial.

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    Ive no idea how many souls have visited this spot over the years, many millions I’m sure. And for good reason. It is genuinely impressive in both its size and its gravitas. After a few photos we had to sit down on the tiles over to one side and take it all in. I don’t claim to know much about US history but to deserve this memorial this man must have really been someone.

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    It was while sitting there, on cold tiles, gazing at the statue and living in the moment that I had a sudden, and somewhat macabre thought which, after some consideration I’ve decided to share with you here. If (as I have heard some who are disillusioned by this current administration say) their Commander in Chief were to meet the same fate as this national hero (possibly by his own supporter when they realise he can’t actually make anything great again)… there would be an unintended and quite terrible result. Such an act would elevate this man to the same level as Lincoln and Kennedy (also Garfield & McKinley). I’m sure we can all agree that is most certainly not something any of us could accept. So I for one would like to wish this “leader of the free world” a very long life.

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    After a time with no sign of the rain letting up, our thoughts turned to dinner. Google maps is a wonderful beast and we quickly discovered a number of cafés and restaurants reasonably close by. What we didn’t know was they were all in amongst the campus of George Washington University. We found out quickly enough – around the same time that we realised we didn’t really want to try any of the latest fad foods you’ll find on an up market university. All wasn’t lost though and after half an hour or so of wandering through what is actually quite an impressive campus, we found what we needed. Simple, hot and cheap student food. We sat at a window and indulged in what had become our second favourite pastime in the US (after motorcycle adventuring) … people watching.

    And as it turned out this Café was located on Pennsylvania Avenue just a block from the White House. So after dinner, and noting the rain had stopped… well… you know we just had to. A very heavy military presence, sniffer dogs being guided through the crowds, a #metoo protest outside the main gates, some guy with a bible trying his hardest to explain his world to anyone who wanted listen, and soldiers. And there, over the high fence was the building that we’ve all seen so many times. Except for the guards and the pretty lighting it could have been empty.

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    We looked around a bit, snapped a couple of pics, didn’t feel it worth a selfie, and moved on. Found our way to another Metro station, sent a quick text to Bob to give him an eta and as darkness fell we descended the steps down to the Metro Centre station and ended our first day in the US Capital. A big one to tick off and so glad that we didn’t let a small thing like a Cat 4 hurricane stop us. I cant close this day out without another honourable mention to Bob who was waiting at the station for us.

    The next day dawned bright and sunny and there was excitement in the air because it was going to be a big one. Today was the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. I’d been looking forward to this for quite some years and my enthusiasm had rubbed off on Janelle too. Even more in the last few weeks since our overnight at Charles Lindbergh Park up in Little Falls Minnesota, I was really looking forward to actually seeing his incredible aircraft. Neither of us realised that even greater wonders awaited us. We just knew this day was going to be one to remember. Believe me it didn’t disappoint.

    Bob again drove us to the Metro station on his way to work and we quickly navigated our way to emerge again from the Smithsonian Station. It couldn’t have been different today though. The rain had given way to glorious sunshine and although there were still large puddles everywhere, it was a completely different place. A five minute walk and we were at the doors, security was tight as expected but no dramas and amazingly, free entry!

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    And straight away, greeting us in the large foyer was the Apollo Lunar Module LM-2 which they have gone to great lengths to configure as the landed LM-5 (Apollo 11’s Eagle) which carried Armstrong and Aldrin on the moon.

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    But just as we had taken that in, we noticed suspended from the ceiling right above it was the aircraft that had been front of my mind for weeks now, Lindbergh’s Spirit of St Louis!

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    So I could write up the story of our day in this amazing place, but I honestly don’t think I can do it justice. It delivered everything we expected and so much more. I’ll let the photos tell the story.

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    John Glenn’s Mercury capsule
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    Chuck Yeager’s X1. The first aircraft to break the sound barrier.
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    One of only three X15’s. Capable of Mach 6.75 and equipped for flight outside earths atmosphere.
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    Supermarine Spitfire
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    Messerschmitt 109
    However, tucked away in its own dedicated gallery is one particular aircraft that would be remiss of me not to mention. The very first. The one that started it all. The original Wright Brothers Flyer. Yes… the actual aircraft that in 1903 began the era of powered flight. Complete with a model pilot lying in the flight ready position.

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    And then to raise the level even more there is however one small, yet in my opinion incredibly profound item that I cannot do justice to this diary without mentioning. Attached to a side wall in the Wright Brothers Gallery, barely noticeable and I’m sure missed by many, is a plaque containing a small piece of the aircraft fabric and a sliver of propeller wood. The attached letters tell the story. When Apollo 11 went to the moon in 1969, when Neil Armstrong made that One Giant Leap for Mankind, they carried these two pieces of the Flyer with them to the lunar surface. I have often since wondered about the person that dreamed that idea up. I hope they have truly won at life.

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    And then it was done. Our little side adventure in Washington DC was complete and that night we signed it off by taking Bob and his lady Karen out to dinner as a thank you for being a fabulous host. As a result we didn’t quite manage the early night we wanted, but still woke refreshed and ready to get going again. With the time off the bikes in NYC, and now two more days in DC, we were seriously missing the road. I suspect you have to ride motorbikes to understand, but we really needed to be out there again.

    Bob left for work early and left us to pack and lock up the house. But not before leaving specific instructions that Janelle was not to kidnap his gorgeous cat. I suspected she was sizing up the tank bag for that exact purpose.

    We rolled out of the driveway around 10.30, had cleared the suburbs by 11 or so and about an hour on the interstate had us in West Virginia (our 16th state) crossing the Potomac at its intersection with the Shenandoah river and stopping for lunch at a strange little town called Harpers Ferry. It looked to be far too big for the minimal catering available (an Italian restaurant was about it) but we never found out why. Good pizza though!

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    A few more miles down the road brought us to a town with the strange name of Front Royal nestled at the northern end of the Great Smokey Mountain Ranges. We didn’t know it yet but this was the start of almost a week of the most amazing roads, the most beautiful scenery, the complete lack of any commercial vehicles (because they are actually banned) and what we both agree was the (riding) highlight of this whole adventure.

    It all started just south of Front Royal when we took a left turn at a non-descript intersection onto the 160 km they call Skyline Drive, which ran the length of Shenandoah National Park…

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  20. Wreckchecker

    Wreckchecker Ungeneer to broked stuff. Supporter

    Joined:
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    6,388
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    Damascus, MD
    Nice write up and thanks for sharing your trip.

    Janelle - Schmoozer is waiting for your return.
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    black top bob likes this.