Catharsis thy name is Scramster

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Ginger Beard, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. taranaki

    taranaki nomadic

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    "The negative aspect is that I struggle with depression and I often find it hard to stay focused and motivated."

    Me too, and I try every day to think of it as something other than a negative. The alternative is to abandon one's feeling heart and that leads to doing all sorts of foolish things just to feel something.
    #21
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  2. johnwesley

    johnwesley wanta be

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    I’m in gingerbeard. We have more in common than I first thought, both 44 too. Hope the ride settled your soul and gave you some direction. The gramos thing is awesome!!!
    #22
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  3. waybill

    waybill wayward

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    Great story Dave look forward to the rest. I've been looking for the photo of your bike out on that lake bed at the Polar Bear with all those other "adventure" bikes, it's one of my favorites. I'll keep looking but came across this one for now.

    [​IMG]
    #23
  4. Webman

    Webman Been here awhile

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    Jeez, what a resume! All very cool! I just went from being an architect to a college professor! Whatever you decide to do, I'm sure you'll be great at it.

    I understand what you're saying regarding feeling watered down, but I'd suggest that all of your design, artistry, and obvious fabrication skills could serve you very well if you find the right outlet. I'm a terrible entrepreneur, but I can't imagine that your skillset wouldn't be in demand. It's strongly suggesting some sort of design and fabrication consultancy, or perhaps designing and building your own products; I'd think about what you're most passionate about, and figuring out how to serve a need. I wish I could be more helpful.
    #24
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  5. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    Great looking HD conversion, I’m amazed the factory hasn’t wanted some of the ADV bike market and produce something similar for riders wanting more off tarmac performance. Nice job:thumb
    #25
  6. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    Congratulations! I never thought I'd make it past my 20s let alone become a granddad. :lol3



    Thank you sir!

    You have described my teens and 20s to a T. The problem with ignoring feelings is that you wind up ignoring the good ones too. Life, even at it worst moments, is too beautiful to ignore. Thanks for sharing.

    Welcome to my RR John! From reading your posts and seeing your pics over the years I kind of figured we did! Would love to meet up with you out on the road some day.

    Waybill , great shot and thanks for posting it. I was bummed to have missed the PBR this year. Wish I had a pic of the faces on the other riders when I showed up for the big bike "A" ride on the Scramster! :lol3 If you do find that other pic please post it up!

    I truly appreciate the feedback Webman. Just being able to discuss these things and hear about what worked and what didn't for others is a huge help. A close friend of mine (with the old blue Chevy) went through a similar metamorphosis a few years ago and he has really inspired me to ignore the easy route and utilize my skillset as a whole rather than in parts. He likes to call it "professional dabbling". :lol3


    Thank you!! I'm not sure why HD has never chosen to make a similar bike especially considering how truly capable it has proven to be. Oh well, that's what the aftermarket is for.:D
    #26
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  7. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

    Joined:
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    Continuing day 1,

    After speaking to my very excited daughter for a while, I got off the phone and just sort of stood there for a few minutes. I'm going to be a grandpa and I haven't even figured out what I want to be when I grow up. I'm sure I looked a tad insane to passersby as I stood there laughing at that thought. Alright gramps, time to get back in the road.

    I needed to make time and that translates to riding on the *gulp* interstate. :becca Anyone that knows me also knows how much I loath the superslab but the unfortunate reality is that sometimes it's necessary. I hunkered down and put two hours of I95 under my belt.

    Needing a break and some fuel for both me and the bike, I pulled off the very next exit and into a McDonald's. Not my first choice in fast food but as it was the only restaurant for miles, well it beat not eating. I do have to say that this place was super fancy. Not a counter to speak of, just little pedestals with tablets atop them and the friendliest staff I've ever met at any restaurant. They also bring your food to the table. Certainly not your run of the mill McD,s!!

    Sadly, the food was just regular McDonald's fare...

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    My bike sitting in the scorching sun. The air conditioning in the restaurant felt so good compared to what was waiting for me outside. I really wasn't looking for to getting back on that seat!


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    After scarfing down my mediocre meal as though it were manna from heaven, it was back on the bike and ripping down the interstate through the blast furnace known as a Florida summer's day.

    I made it about another hour before deciding to bail on the interstate. That was all I could stand of crap drivers and traffic congestion. A truck driver in a big rig tailgating me in the slow lane then inexplicably flipping me off when he finally chose to pass me was the last straw. I gave him a honk honk and a silly wave when I rolled past him in the grass to my exit as he sat perfectly still in construction traffic. Jackass..

    A back road to Palatka.

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    #27
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  8. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    Thankfully it began to rain just south of Palatka. It was a welcome break from the dizzying heat of the day.

    I love these old town Florida backroads. To me, they feel like a welcoming embrace in their familiarity. So much of my life has been spent flying amongst these oak canopies that they define "home" for me.

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    A few minutes after this photo the skies opened up but only briefly. I pulled into a gas station to top off my fuel and ring out my gloves. I also tracked down a cheap hotel just across the GA state line in a town called Fargo. Looks like that will be my home for the night.
    #28
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  9. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    Once out of Palatka, I passed through Green Cove Springs then headed west and into the Osceola National forest. I saw very few fellow motorists the rest of the way to Fargo. To say there's not much in the way of civilization through this part of FL and GA would be an understatement.

    I reached the GA border and decided to take a break, sttetch and drink some water. 20 minutes later and not one other vehicle had gone by. It was such an enjoyable feeling of solitude save for a few friendly Ravens that grew curious enough about my presence that they landed right next to me an investigated my bike.

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    My view during my 20 min stop. Nice and lonely.
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    #29
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  10. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

    Joined:
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    The rest of the ride was uneventful as I rolled into Fargo... A town that you'll miss if you blink. The part of town that is on the main street is roughly 1 block long with only 3 businesses; a gas station, a restaurant and the hotel.

    Speaking of hotels, this one is nestled next to an abandoned outfitters business and it is tucked at the back of a parking lot that has a chain across the entrance. If I hadn't spoken to the owner just hours before then I'd swear it was closed down. It isn't and the owner Kevin is a super nice guy. He had let me know ahead of time that he wouldn't be around but would leave the room open with the key on the nightstand... "By the way, we are cash only. If you leave before I get there in the morning just leave the money and key on the nightstand. I know your good for it." Man I love small towns!! The place, though old, was immaculate and it looked straight out of a 70's road trip flick! Score!


    If you ever pass through Fargo, don't hesitate to grab a room at the Gator Motel!

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    #30
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  11. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    After unloading the bike I walked across the street to have dinner. It's a cool little country kitchen with good food and cheap pricing. The only other patron was a local construction worker that didn't seem much like chatting. Instead I spent my meal time with two deer friends.

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    No crowds at the Swannee River Cafe tonight.
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    Less than $10 for burger steak, fries, salad and a drink. Definitely not in south Florida anymore!

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    The restaurant is for sale by the way so if you want to live the small town life and buy into a successful turn key business then this just might be the ticket!

    After dinner it was time to get some sleep. I called my girl then tried to watch a movie. Sleep won.
    #31
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  12. johnwesley

    johnwesley wanta be

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    Good going man, the I-state is a living hell, especially in you part of the world. Good on ya for hitting the old two lane and seeing some of small town America, it’s the best. Good ride report and pics. Hope we can meet up some time. I rarely get out to your part of the USA. I give ya a buzz if I do, it’ll be cool to hook up.
    #32
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  13. peejayess

    peejayess Adventurer

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    Cheltenham UK
    I'm in to hear the rest of this.

    Got made redundant four times, first one just after I hit my 40s. I know things happen differently your side of the pond, but reinventing myself several times was great fun, even if a struggle at times. The way I saw it, it was their loss when they got rid of me, and to prove it I prospered whenever I went self-employed and hated it if I got tempted back to the "security" of employment. Don't let the b******s get you down!!
    #33
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  14. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

    Joined:
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    And I'll do the same the next time I head west!
    #34
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  15. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    That's encouraging. One thing I've come to realize is that life almost always seems to improve after a struggle. Thanks for following along!
    #35
  16. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

    Joined:
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    Day two started early. I was up, showered and loaded by 7 a.m. I had a quick chat with my only neighbor for the night. He was on a solo trip around the SE USA in his truck with a scooter in tow. He was just going town to town and when he found a place he wanted to check out, he'd unliad the scoot and go exploring. Pretty cool!

    Kickstand up and on the road by 7:15 and a short 1/2 hour later I arrived in Homerville GA with a hankering for breakfast.

    The best thing I can say about the meal I had in Homerville is that the AC was on high. I begrudgingly finished my food, made a quick call to my girl and rode around the town just to check out the buildings.

    I was drawn to what looked to be the original train station for Homerville. I didn't know it at the time but apparently it is a historic landmark for the area...

    Station No. 11
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    As I left town, I began to realize that my 430 mile push the day before may have been a bit too much aboard a bike that had been built to look and feel like it had fallen straight out of the 1960s. I was sore. My ass, my neck, my back and my arms were all expressing their discord with my decision to ride for so many hours upon such a contraption.

    It was now 9:30 a.m. , I had traveled a mere 60 miles and it was time for break number two. My desire to burn down miles on day one would trouble me for the remainder of my ride to Asheville.

    A nice shaded spot under a bridge.
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    Now, something I've talked about in other ride reports is my love of old structures and abandoned buildings. What I don't love is seeing the death of small towns and knowing deep down that it created heartache for others. To witness the ghosts of unraveled dreams or to stand atop the crumbled tombs of someone's beloved way of life brings with it both a sense of reverence for the struggle and a sorrow at seeing the finality of how it played out.

    No other region that I have visited in the USA showcases it's most recent scars like that of the American "South".


    With a Post Office being the sole survivor in this town, it's hard not to view it as a lone flower clinging tightly to a barren wind-scoured precipice.
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    #36
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  17. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

    Joined:
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    Pushing on I settled into a nice rhythm as I potato-potatoed along beautiful Georgia byways to a gas stop and a snack. I got to making small talk with a few locals when a group of fellow riders pulled in.

    It turned out that they were headed up to Maggie Valley and invited me to ride with them for a while. I thanked them but declined. I was enjoying the sedate pace I had set and had little interest in a group ride at the time. We bid eachother a safe trip and parted ways.

    Another few miles and another abandoned town.
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    The brutal temps and my still suffering body were conspiring to end the day early so I began looking for a place to hang my hat.


    Beautiful mainstreet in Louisville GA and two fellow travelers. Thought about sticking around but lodging was way beyond my budget. I had planned to camp on this trip but with nighttime temps in the low 80s, it just wasn't happening. "Adventure" doesn't need to mean missery...
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    #37
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  18. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    I made it as far as Thomson GA and called it. The White Column Inn had cheap rooms and a bar in the lobby as well as a Zaxby's across the street.

    Winner winner and a litteral chicken dinner!! Man I love Zaxby's. The meals come with Texas Toast and they serve sweet tea. Holy hell I'm a human garbage disposal at times.
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    I ate delicious poison then headed to the motel bar which was empty other than the bartender, her boyfriend and me. Had a good talk with bartender about alcoholism (something that I struggled with in my youth), relationships and life in general as I sat there enjoying a small glass of whiskey.


    Off to my room and a phone call to my buddy and usual riding partner, Victor. On my way to the room I ran into a work crew from Mexico and Guatemala. I shocked the hell out of them by speaking to them in Spanish. We talked about work and politics for a couple of minutes. They then offered me a couple of beers but I decided that I needed to rest more than I needed a hangover so I thanked them , shook hands and headed to my room where I called Victor. Somehow the conversation went south as is often the case with us. Sumbitch started telling me that I need a Goldwing Trike now that I'm a grandpa. For some reason this culminated in us texting eachother kissy faces. Sadly this was not alcohol induced...

    That's right @viclan , I'm throwing you under the bus!!:lol3
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    My poor woman actually kisses this mug!!
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    I called her a short while later only to have her tell me that Victor was right and that I'm an old grandpa. Thanks universe...
    #38
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  19. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @oneworldcycles

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    One nice thing about staying at hotels rather than camping is that you can be on the road with much less effort. No rolling up sleeping bags and mats. No drying off your tent and no having to pack it all back up.

    As a result I was on the bike and headed down the road by 8 a.m.

    Goodbye Thomson GA.

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    #39
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  20. peejayess

    peejayess Adventurer

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    Please educate a Brit - what's Texas Toast? Presumably toast, but different ...
    #40
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