“She’s Headed to Where She Came From”

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Aug 1st, 2013
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The title of this post is what my mother said when she found out where I was headed.  Lemme explain.

 

My paternal great-grandfather made his way to Indiana from a small town in Maine.  I discovered this fact in the sixth grade when some over-zealous teacher decided that we should trace our genealogy.  I still think it was just a ruse to make us insolent teens go home and actually speak to our families.  And extended families.  And call that one aunt that had the family bible so she could read all the names and dates listed inside on that one page in the middle where you can record such things.  This is also when I discovered that my parents were “practically” married when I was conceived. What’s a few weeks between friends?   So…yeah.  fun assignment.

 

Anyway, I found myself in the general location of the small town where my great-grandfather was born while on vacation.  Bath, Maine.  So naturally, I got all nostalgic for a place I’ve never been.  Makes sense, right?  (If you know me this totally makes sense.)

 

Oh, Maine.  You are so wonderfully sucky.  The weather?  Crappy.  The scenery? Awesome.  The roads?  Train-wreck.  The people?  Utterly charming.   The tourist trap-ish prices?  Outrageous.  The food?  Heavenly.  See what I mean?  Wonderfully sucky.

 

 

 

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Despite the rain, the skin-ripping wind, and the soul crushing, dreary, cloudy sky, Maine was really quite lovely.

 

 

So here’s the summary:  Plates of seafood eaten: (some really large embarrasing number).

 

 

Number of Maine residents that apologized for the weather during our vacation: All of them.

 

 

Seashells picked up and packed on the bike and were broken on the way home: 3

 

 

Duration of visit at the visitor center discussing my family history: 1.25 hours.

 

 

Coastal islands driven on, walked upon, lounged around and photographed: 2

 

 

Number of lighthouses that made me happy-pants: 4

 

 

All in all, it was a fantastic visit to a great state from my family’s history.  Maybe someday I can go back when the damned rain quits.

 

 

Off on a tangent (oh look! something shiny!)

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Jul 10th, 2013
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I have a couple more vacation posts almost ready, but I got sidetracked by some cuteness and haven’t quite finished tweeking (twerking?) them.

 

 

I have been all ” I am productive! I can accomplish all the things!”, running around home and work putting things in their proper places and being all busy, when this happened:

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Cuteness.

 

 

 

 

 

The eldest offspring has been babysitting fairly often, and this is one of the victims kids that she has had at the house lately.  It took about four whole minutes before she had everyone (including The Man) doing her every bidding and acting a fool to entertain her.

 

 

 

Yes, she’s cute.  Adorbs.  Yes, she’s got that wide-eyed innocence that capitvates even cold, black hearts like mine.  But folks.  FOLKS.  The words.  Oh Sweet Baby Jesus in Footie Pajamas, the words.  The things that come out of this kid’s mouth take the cuteness factor to DEFCON 5.

 

According to the mind of this small person, all adults of a certain age fall into two catagories:  Grammaw and Gramps.  Which is precisely what she calls The Man and I.  Cute, right?  But no, it gets even better.  She pronounces it “Dramma and Dramps”  And then I fall into a puddle on the floor and offer to let her break everything I own and burn down the house.  Who could resist?

 

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” I will hug him, and squeeze him and call him George”

 

“Please make the child release her death-grip or I will call PETA.  Yes, dogs CAN dial the phone.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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“May I drip red Kool-aid all over your new black leather recliner, good Sir?” ” Well      of course, dear child, drip away. And please get some on my shirt also.”

 

 

 

 

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Not one grumble was heard as we cleaned jelly fingerprints off the iPad, and no one complained that someone ate all the Cool Whip out of the container with a spoon.  (This time it wasn’t me, honest-injun.)

 

Small children are made adorable so that we don’t leave them on a curb for pouring an entire bottle of dish soap on the dog while it’s tied up with your favorite bra and laying on your new couch.  It’s a scientific fact.    Probably.  But this kid, running around mock-whispering “Where’s Dramps?  Motorcycle?  Vroom, vroom!”  makes my non-existent ovaries hurt.

 

Lordy knows that I give thanks everyday that my child-rearing days are drawing to a close, but sometimes a toddler is just what a mama of teenagers needs to restore her faith in kids.

 

PS.  The first person to whisper “Granny-lust” at this post gets shanked.

 

 

Where’s my damned silver lining?

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Jun 29th, 2013
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Day 2

 

We woke up in Pennsylvania (by the way, all the cool people there only say PA, never the entire name of the state, just so you know), to a weather forecast of doom and gloom.  It seems a storm had followed us from the Midwest.

 

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Doom and gloom, ya’ll.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now here is where I have the opportunity to wax poetic about the glory of our great country and the beautiful splendor of Mother Nature, but the reality is that it’s hard to see any damned splendor with rain stinging the crap out of your face and a lovely sludge-y mist from the tires of the other drivers painting a fine coating of crud on your entire person.

 

We entered New York State under the clouds and mist you can see above, succumbing the inevitable reality that we would have to stop and put on rain suits.

 

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We put these on at a roadside rest stop. High fashion, it ain’t. Also? Putting a rain suit on over damp clothes is an exercise in me rolling around on the sidewalk with my boot caught halfway down my rain suit pant leg and my jacket rolled up around my neck trying to choke me to death.  It leaves me panting, cursing and probably with my bra tugged up above one boob, and my boot removed and flung across the parking lot.  I am a wonder for all the rest stop patrons to behold.

 

 

 

 

Did ya’ll know that New York is one big ass state?  My mid-western upbringing caused faulty perception I guess.  Other than New York City and a state capitol that no one ever got right in the sixth grade, I honestly didn’t think that there was SO MUCH of New York.  Traveling from the southwest corner to the Vermont state line took forever.  I wish I had pictures of how much forever this took, but due to the rain, my camera (currently known as MY PRECIOUS) was tucked safely away, dry and happy.  I, on the other hand, was not.  My only shelter from the elements was a rain suit, which I soon discovered had migrated north to approximately my knees, my trusty helmet, and huddling behind The Man.  (See that teeny, tiny windshield up there on the bike?  The Man chose to replace the larger one that came on the bike with that one which he thought looked better.  And by better I mean, cooler.  Who’s wet now, Mister?)

 

 

Side story:  All this rain caused great concern for our GPS device.  How was I going to find the nearest Starbucks and/or Dunkin Donuts if it became water-logged and non-working?  While we were stopped at a gas station to fill up, I suggested buying a condom and putting over the Starbucks-finder.  This seemed fitting given my “Fuck you Weather, don’t you know I’m on vacation?” attitude.  Instead, The Man opted to ask the kind lady at the station (which also housed a Subway/Uncle Chesters Chicken/Pizza/Roller Hot Dog area) for a piece of Saran Wrap.  He then wrapped the coffee-locating-device tightly and all was well in the world again.  Coffee for everyone!

 

 

Day Two had us stopping more often than we liked because of the weather.  At some point a torrential downpour wins, and you just have to pull in somewhere and ride it out.

 

We made it to Albany, NY that night (almost Vermont!) and the hotel staff was kind enough to give us an entire industrial roll of paper towels to stuff in our boots to absorb all the rain that I had been soaking up for the past 12 hours.  In reality, they were probably just tired of hearing me squish up and down the hallway, leaving puddles everywhere I stepped.

Daily Miles: Approximately 420

Total Miles from Home: Approximately 925 (longer than usual but we stayed away from toll-roads)

Condition of my Ass on a scale of 1 to 10:  10 (I say this with a smile because this new bike is way more comfortable than the one we left at home.)

Condition of my New Cute Harley Boots: Wet.

 

 

Geeking on some biker stuff

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Aug 14th, 2012
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Vacation Day 2 (Better known as the day we tried to do and see ALL THE THINGS because our time was cut short and we had to return the next day)

 

One of the reasons why we chose Milwaukee was to visit the Harley Davidson museum.  Our trip a couple of years ago had taken us to the Harley factory in York, Pennsylvania (you can read about it here) and The Man got to see where his baby was born.  And by baby, I mean his Harley.  It was cool and interesting and not nearly as testosterone-filled as I had imagined, so an actual museum sounded like a neat place to soak in some biker history. I was also betting that they had a huge gift shop full of sparkly things for me to purchase.
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The Iron Horse Hotel had graciously given us complimentary tickets to get into the museum, so not only were we super excited to be be doing actual vacation-y type things, but we were doing them FREE!  Which means more money for me to spend in the gift shop!  (If you should find out that the Iron Horse does this for all their guests, please don’t tell me.  I like to think that I’m special.)

 

Inside the museum, I took about 200 pictures (God bless digital cameras) and I’m gonna make you look at each one of them.  (Just kidding.)  I don’t know what happens to me when I go someplace that I should act all cool and interested, but I turn into THAT person.  You know, the one that takes a picture of every damned thing that doesn’t move and usually from a squatting/leaning/standing on my head position.  I’m artsy, ya’ll.

Bronze hill climber statue in front of the Harley museum, purchased by the Davidson family for the museum.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inside was a biker’s dream.  From the first bikes to the newest models, and everything in-between, it was like walking through 100+ years of rubber, racing, righteous rides and ridiculousness.  (Alliteration WIN!)

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1942 WWII V-Twin used for military dispatch and courier service

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Probably my favorite picture from the entire museum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peter Fonda was not there, I looked.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bedazzled!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harley Davidson commemorated it’s 100th anniversary with this Ultra Classic Electra Glide with sidecar.  After it was built, it was dismantled and shipped all over the world, to be signed by the over 6,000 employees of the company.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After spending a couple of hours touring the museum and buying approximately 38 pounds of t-shirts and assorted gift-y type things,  we ventured over to the cafe.  All those made photography skills make a girl hungry.  The cafe did not disappoint.

 

 

 

 

 

This picture makes me hungry all over again.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After our lovely meal, we had a few minutes to relax and plan our route home.  We met some other bikers while I was busy enjoying my drink with my feet up, and learned that they were on a five-week, cross country trip.  Someday, I thought.  Someday.

 

 

 

Late night conversation with a jerk

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May 3rd, 2012
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Last night I had the following conversation with mydog.  (What?  You don’t talk to your pets?  You’re weird.)

Me: Dude, you’re kind of a jerk.

Dash: Nope, I’m fabulous. Like Barbra Streisand or Charlie Sheen.

Me: In the past few weeks you have eaten an entire box of Godiva chocolates, sucked the green medicine out of four Nyquil gel-caps, chewed up three replacement cartridges for an electronic cigarette and wrapped yourself up in an entire roll of scotch tape. Normal dogs don’t act like this.

Dash: Listen here Judgey McJudgerson, I don’t bring up all the weird things you do. I’m tolerant. Like Ghandi or the Godfather.

Me: The Godfather wasn’t actually all that tolerant.

Dash: *sigh * Again with the judging….

Me: I’m afraid your actions will influence the other dogs and soon I will have total anarchy in the house. You do realize that I’m the master here, right?

Dash: I will not cave to your dictatorship. POWER TO THE PEOPLE!

Me: ummmm, you’re not…people, exactly.

Dash: I was speaking metaphorically, asshole.

I'm bad to the bone!

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