Ignore this if you want sidecar content- I was riding my solo GSA. About once a year I get together with friends that all started riding when we were in high school in Vista, CA. We are in our 70's now so the group is smaller but we have all been riding since then. I was was scheduled to meet them in Fortuna for a 5 day ride. I almost didn't make it. Seemed like the God's were against me. 2 days before I was due to leave I slipped in the mud while watering and fell with my worst knee oddly twisted underneath me. It make a sickening sound like tearing cardboard and hurt like hell. The day before I was to leave I was trying to start the gas engine on a pressure washer and the thing kicked back furiously twisting my hand and especially my thumb backwards and I couldn't move it all night. I decided to soldier on anyway and left the next morning. 50 miles from home I had a bird strike to the gourd. I have had a lot of close calls with turkey vultures but this was the first time I was hit. There were a group of them on a long straight on Hwy 36. Even though I was traveling at 65 mph they all took off before I got to them so I didn't slow down. I didn't even see the one that hit my helmet. It felt like I had been hit with a baseball bat. I didn't go down but it took me a couple of hundred yards to process what had happened and get stopped. The bugger was laying spread eagle in the road so I went back to access the damage and take a picture. When I pulled up alongside it struggled to its feet, blood dripping from its mouth. As I left it tried to waddle a little but I doubt it survived. My only injuries were a sore neck, a splitting headache, and a small cut by my eye from my sunglasses. Still managed to have a fantastic 4 additional days on the road.