Adventures in Motorcycling, Part Three

I neglected to mention the fact that our room number was also my birth date.  We enjoy funny coincidences, especially in Sedona where the word ‘vortex’ is used in everyday conversation and they are thought to be locations that have a certain spiritual energy flow that exists on, what some believe, are multiple dimensions…

The entry to our abode.

Where all the magic happens

 

After a bite of breakfast at the hotel, we were ready to head on out and do some meandering about town.  Of course, we knew it would rain yet again but rain is some of my favorite weather and we certainly don’t get any at home so I knew I would enjoy it, regardless.

 The breathtaking views even made the public parking lots beautiful!

There are so many shops to visit and each one is unique-gemstones, jewelry, art, knickknacks, paddy-whacks…you name it.  We even found a Harley store and Robert found himself a new ring:

  We found a lovely pair of opal earrings for my mom-2nd row from the top on the right.  I think I was more impressed with them than she was.  I have to remind her periodically that they aren’t abalone…
 I find silly things are often the most pleasing.

We roamed around a bit more before my stomach started grumbling for a margarita, er, lunch, so we had a nice little break and chatted about how unusual we found Sedona.  Not what I expected, in the least.  Honestly, I thought for sure I’d find hippies dancing barefoot in the street telling of how magical “The Vortex” was while trying to lure us into their shop to get our palms read.  Instead, we encountered friendly people just enjoying their day like we were.

There were plenty of opportunities for photos with lovely scenes in the background.

Amethyst is my birthstone and as we were looking at some jewelry, Robert found a beautiful ring and bracelet for me.  I was absolutely spoiled and loving every minute of it!

 As we were about to cross the street to another set of stores that we hadn’t been to yet, lightning lit up the sky and a thunderous applause was delivered promptly afterwards.  We found an unoccupied bench and just drank it all in.  The sounds and smells of a fresh thunderstorm are indescribable.

It was amusing to me to watch the jeep tours drive by with the passengers wearing what amounted to giant trash bags-that’s some dedicated tourism! I think I would have been content to spend the rest of the day there on the bench with a hot cup of coffee in one hand and my other holding Robert’s. 

The rain died down a little so that we were able to cross the street that was quickly becoming a deluge.  I was almost hit by a distracted woman in her car who bit her nails knowing what she had almost done.  Rain and drivers don’t mix well.


The hunt was on:  Find an umbrella!

We walked down the street, unsuccessfully dodging raindrops, until we stopped at Murph’s Country Store.  We looked around a bit until Bingo!  Green umbrellas at an Irish grocery!  I’m not sure what was said, exactly, but Robert got us into the best conversation with Ann that I’ve had in a long while.  We discussed rebellious teenagers, our relationships with our dads (who are both deceased) and she had me in stitches with Feckin’ this, and Feckin’ that-if you stop and take the time to have conversations with strangers, you’ll often find it truly rewarding. She was a wonderful story-teller and I could honestly get a little glimpse of what her life was like in Ireland.  What a treasure!

After saying our goodbyes with promises to return on our next trip, we made our way back, green umbrellas in hand.  Yes, we each got one because Robert didn’t want to share.  He knew it would become mine and he’d be the one left in the rain.  Smart guy.

My Robert.  He’s such a ham.

It was about time to start heading back to the hotel so I snapped a few more pictures and then we were off.

    

And away we go!

We arrived back at the hotel just in time to watch the sunset.  After a day full of rain, thunder, and lightning, the display was spectacular.  I took some photos while Robert chit chatted with other observers standing by.  It’s fun being social.


    

We ended our day on a happy note, ready to travel to Laughlin in the morning.

Adventures in Motorcycling, Part Two

We left the hotel for the next part of our trip and headed over to get a bite to eat.  Drinking is one of my most favorite pastimes so I was well acquainted with the need for bacon to fill my aching tummy after our night on Whiskey Row.  We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast and discussed how long our drive would be as well as the rain clouds that were looming overhead.  Yes,  we would be in for a wet ride today.


 The clouds were gorgeous, but sure enough, we got rained on for most of the way to our first stop in Jerome, Arizona.

Jerome is an unusual little town that has houses built into the side of the mountain.  It would have been quite an experience to do more exploring but I urged Robert to get us back on the road and head to Sedona (only 10 minutes after we paid to visit the Jerome museum) because I really wasn’t outfitted for rain.  We were, however,  able to take a few pictures in front of the sprawling landscape of the Black Hills.


 Back on the bike and on our way to Sedona!  I was loving the clouds even though they were becoming increasingly dark and threatening.  My ears were starting to freeze which reminded me how ill prepared I was for anything other than Southern California weather.  Pshaw, weather…we’re in a drought-what’s rain again?  Something of legends.


 Isn’t it gorgeous? If only I could bottle the aroma of fresh rain on asphalt with a hint of gasoline notes to highlight the rumble of a Harley on the open road.  That’s bliss, I tell you!

Freedom

Just as I was about to take off my gloves and shove them up inside my helmet to protect my freezing ears, we arrived in Sedona.  Oh happy day!

 We promptly located our hotel and found a place to park.  I wish I had gotten a picture of Robert when he first got off the bike because he was drenched.  My man was also my windshield because the ankles of my jeans were barely wet while he was soaked up to his knees-even his ass was soggy.  Of course I laughed, being the slightly wicked individual that I am.  Alas, I was too busy delighting in his misery to think of taking a picture.

We got ourselves checked in and sweetheart that he is, Robert let them know that our trip was also a celebration of my 40th birthday. The receptionist reached behind her and produced a bottle of wine and two glasses and wished me a Happy Birthday.  That’s some top-notch service in my book.

Our room with a view was quite comfortable and provided us with the relaxation we desired.

  Notice he’s barely taking off his shoes and I already have half of the bottle gone.  That’s how I roll.

  We had little bursts of sunshine as the clouds ran off, but they quickly returned and brought more rain.      I was a bit tired and convinced Robert that we should stay in and enjoy the views from our room while eating some delivery pizza.  Of course, I drank the whole bottle myself (minus a few sips I allowed him to have) and sank myself into the bed while watching a couple of episodes of Dance Moms.  Did I mention that he’s a good sport?  If not, let me tell you now, he puts up with me and my shenanigans and still talks to me the next day.  That’s a good guy, right there.

  At some point, I passed out from exhaustion (and wine) and woke up well rested and ready to embrace a brand new day exploring Sedona.

Adventures in Motorcycling, Part One

I’ve developed a certain fondness for adventure over the last couple of years.

Fondness?  Maybe insatiable appetite would be more fitting.  I crave it.

My husband bought a motorcycle a year ago figuring that he would enjoy the opportunity to ride on those rare occasions he’s allowed home (he’s an OTR truck driver). It was basically built for one.  He didn’t realize, however, that once he took me for a ride, that one seater would be getting replaced with a couch built for two, and he would need to add a back rest.

A little less that a year later, we found ourselves with a bigger bike equipped with plenty of room for me to carry my essentials (my crap), a nice little stereo, and plenty of room on the back for me to feel safe and comfortable.  So comfortable, in fact, that I’ve nodded off a few times!

At the beginning of May we were able to take our first real trip on our new bike and it was a great introduction for me.  We ran into heat, rain, gusty winds, and a break down that he was able to figure out and fix, thankfully.  I absolutely loved it.

The first leg of our trip had us heading to Yuma, Arizona.  If any of you are familiar with Yuma, you can understand when I describe it as The Devil’s Butt Crack.  It’s not uncommon to reach 115 degrees in the summer, if not higher.  Heat and I do not mix well.  Thankfully, there’s a place in Thermal, California that sells date shakes which, if you haven’t had one yet, I urge you to do soon;  they’re glorious creations that will cool your tongue in the middle of the blazing heat.

See how happy I am?


I remember wishing that the shop had been cooler inside but I was grateful to have a little break from the blazing sun on my shoulders.

Onward we rode with me on the back snapping photos of our surroundings with the Cannon we picked up especially for our trip and with my iphone 6.  I’m very new to that camera so I have a lot of learning to do-I was disappointed in my ability to take action shots while riding.  Most came out blurry but I was able to manage a few usable ones.  Of course, I managed to take some selfies, too.


I find ways to entertain myself on long stretches through the desert…!

We made it to our first destination-visiting family and lounging about for a day and night and then it was time to say goodbye and hit the road again.  This is where we ran into a bit of trouble.  The bike had been running smoothly up to this point so we thought nothing of stopping at the one store in the middle of nowhere to grab something to drink.  Apparently that was some bad decision-making because the bike wouldn’t start back up again-completely dead.  Jumped on the phone to HOG (they help with towing, etc.) to see if they could get us to a nearby mechanic which turned out to be 70 + miles away and would cost us $800. Yikes! Thankfully, Family Dollar carries some basic tools and my husband was able to figure out the problem and get it fixed. Amazing!  I was so relieved because it’s no fun being stranded in places to which you are unaccustomed. Like I said, I do manage to find ways to keep myself occupied so I made my own little biker buddy while my husband was on the phone.


I try to go with the flow as much as possible, even if I don’t always succeed.

We made it down the road a few miles before the issues returned but Robert was able tighten a few more screws and there were no more problems for the remainder of the trip.

That evening we arrived in Prescott, Arizona. Neither of us had ever been there and I do wish we had gotten there earlier in the day as originally planned, but I was thrilled at how cute the town was as we made our way to the hotel.  Pulling up into the driveway , we came across a group of German tourists that had rented motorcycles  to make their way from Florida to Las Vegas and back.  They were loaded down with packs of beer and settling in for some relaxation.  They extended an invite but we declined as we already had plans to hit Whiskey Row.

After washing the dirt and grime off from our adventure earlier, we plotted out our path to Whiskey Row.  We had been told by different people that the walk was only about a short block so when we looked on our map and discovered it was actually a mile and a half…we decided it was worth it anyway and so off we went on our little excursion.


Our initial plan was to get a drink from each of the bars but when we discovered what an excellent bartender we would have in the first one,  we decided to stay and enjoy ourselves there for a few hours.  I’m too competitive for my own good so I stayed neck and neck with Robert on the drinks and needless to say, that night is a little fuzzy.  I believe we ended with him having 8 and me having 7.  The drinks were excellent as was the service.

Here’s a little sample of our adult beverages:

This was the BEST Bloody Mary I’ve ever had.  No comparison!
  This was my last drink and packed a wallop.  It was appropriately named Finger in the ass.    We managed our mile and a half back to the hotel just fine (and upright) and slept in a little later the next morning.  We had so much fun and hope to return later this year and see our favorite bartender.

(By the way, I was corrected on my pronunciation of Prescott-apparently, the last syllable rhymes with biscuit.  Like Pres-cuit.  I’ll just continue saying it how I normally do:  PresSCOTT.)