Sunday, April 29, 2012

Short Ride

Yesterday we were up at 5 am since Troubadour was teaching a Team Oregon class. He needed to be on the range by 7 am.

I rode Max to coffee solo and visited with everyone for a few hours and then headed downtown to grab us some lunch.  The plan was for me to ride to Albany to the range so we could have lunch then maybe go for a ride somewhere.  I stopped at Vietnamese Baguette and picked us up a few orders of Tofu Salad Rolls with peanut sauce for dipping.  Yum.  Something nice and light for the sunny day.

As I arrive at the range they were just finishing up with the riding portion of the day.

(Troubadour putting his range cards in his pocket)

He wrapped things up and talked with a few fellow instructors and we left the range as another class was due to arrive for afternoon training.  We walked up a bit of a grassy knoll to eat lunch while we watched the next students arrive and begin.  One of the bikes they are using now is a Suzuki TU 250 like what I owned before Max.  I watched as one student accidentally did a 'stoppie' on one while practicing emergency braking. Whoa, didn't know they could do that.

We decided to ride to Salem.  We stopped at Premier Motogear in Albany for an oil filter for Max (he is  a little overdue) then took the back roads over some of our favorite twisties.

We stopped at Cycle Gear and looked around and then headed to Wal-Mart because occasionally they will have Mobile 1 synthetic motorcycle oil.  No such luck.

We didn't stop for any pics on the way to Salem or on the way home but I did manage to snap a few in the parking lot of Wal-Mart while Troubadour was working on something.

(Troubadour futzing with Lucy)
While taking pictures I noticed our sunshine was fast disappearing as the clouds rolled in from the west.  I expected to get a little wet on the way home but the rain never came.

We only went about 100 miles (160 km), but it was a great afternoon of riding with hubby.  I can't ask for more than that.  Because we were up so early we were knackered by the time we got home from Salem.  A bit of vegging on the sofa and we headed to bed early.

Today we get the pleasure of having lunch with RichardM from Richard's Page.  We are looking forward to seeing him again.

- Au Revoir

"For the man sound in body and serene of mind there is no such thing as bad weather; every day has its beauty, and storms which whip the blood do but make it pulse more vigorously." - George Gissing, "Winter," The Private Papers of Henry Ryecroft, 1903

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Five Minutes of Fame

The lovely Pam over at Helmet or Heels motorcycle blog is doing a series of posts on female motorcycle riders.

Today I happen to be the featured rider.  Click the link below if you would like a chuckle and a bit of background you may, or may not, have already known about yours truly.

Please check out her previous posts on the other lady riders.  You may even recognize others you know.  Check her blog every day for a new profile.

- Au Revoir

"We are all worms, but I do believe I am a glowworm. " - Winston Churchill

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Where Does Your Bike Live?

Flyboy over at A View From Above threw down a photo challenge.  After posting pictures of his awesome new 'man cave' he challenged folks to post up a picture of where your motorcycle or bicycle lives.

Ummmm here goes...... 

I guess technically this picture would do for both Troubadour and myself.

(It's like a game of Where's Max, not Where's Waldo)

(There he is hiding behind Lucy)
Troubadour rides Lucy every day while commuting so his bike is always out front.  Of course I am more of a weekend warrior so Max hides in the back.

It's not very exciting or 'man cave' like, but it does do the job considering it is a one car garage holding both motorcycles, 3 bicycles, the clothes washer and dryer, lawn mower, recycle bins, and all of Troubadour's tools, equipment and extra riding gear, etc.

So...... where does your bike live?  After posting a pic please click on the link in the first paragraph above for View from Above and link your blog to Flyboy's original post.

- Au Revoir

"The modern idea of a home has been well expressed as the place one goes from the garage." - George Wickersham

Friday, April 20, 2012

Sunday Nursery Hoppin'

We try and divide our time between riding and gardening and last weekend was no exception.  Since we had a great day of riding on Saturday we decided that Sunday we'd drive to a few plant nurseries and take a look see.  Also, we were in search of a Magnolia "Little Gem" tree for our front yard.

By the time we left the house it was almost noon so we stopped and grabbed a few sandwiches to go and figured we'd find a nice bench at the first nursery and have lunch.

First up was Dancing Oaks Nursery. They are a little out of the way to the North and West of Corvallis.  They are definitely worth the drive because of their display gardens. We've bought several trees from them previously.

After driving through the beautiful farmland we made a right turn onto a gravel drive. Although we were in the Subaru, I think it would be a great road for dual sports. 

(head for the hills)
Getting closer

(I think I can, I think I can......)
Once at the top of the hill we go down the other side.  You can barely make out some buildings in the middle of the left side of the photo.

(Over the hills and through the woods......)

Once we arrived we grabbed our lunch and water bottle and started wandering.  We found a nice pond area with a wide ledge to sit and relax.

(Pond where we had lunch)
(Our lunch companion)
(Our view while eating)

After eating we wandered through the display gardens and greenhouses snapping pictures as we went.

(Hellebores )

(To me this looked like a tribal mask and headdress)

(Troubadour found a plant with his name on it)

(Pink Flamingos for Keith at Twists and Leanings)
(Flowering Currant)
They did not have any Little Gem Magnolias, but on the way out we saw the coolest kitty.  We sure wanted to take it home with us.

(Cool nursery cat)
As we were driving away Troubadour stopped at the top of the hill so that I could take a few pictures of the Willamette Valley below.

(Looking North East)
(Looking East)
(Looking South East)

From Dancing Oaks we made our way to North Albany along the back roads and decided it was the perfect time to use my free Starbucks coupon.  All the fresh air and sunshine had made us thirsty.  We hit up the Starbucks drive thru and then went to Tom's Garden Center which is nearby.

I didn't take the camera in with me as I didn't think I could safely juggle my drink and the camera at the same time.  I am a bit clumsy you know.  We took our time and enjoyed the sun.  Another nursery cat took a liking to Troubadour and he even carried her for a bit.  Alas, they didn't have a Little Gem Magnolia so we had one more stop to make.

On the way to Corvallis on Highway 20 from North Albany is Garland Nursery.  It has always been a  favorite of ours, but then Troubadour did work there for nearly 3 years so we might be a little biased. We know a lot of staff that are still there and the owners.

More wandering and photo taking ensued.  


(Object d'art)

(I also found a plant bearing my name)

(I love snail statues!)

(Does it go faster when it's orange?)

I took the above picture on the way out.  It is in a bed in the parking lot.  Very eye catching.

We did find a Little Gem and brought it home and planted it in the front yard.  We had three large overgrown miscanthus grasses in a bed out front that had over stayed their welcome and weren't doing very well. So far it has been a nice change.  When the rest of the bed is complete I'll take a picture.

Rumor has it we'll see 75˚F (23.8˚C) this weekend.  Woohoo!  Sounds like riding and gardening weather - in that order.

Does anyone have any fun plans for the weekend?

- Au Revoir

" The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five sense." - Hanna Rion

Monday, April 16, 2012

Saturday Scootin'


Helmet......  Definitely helmet........

We were out of bed by 7:00 am on Saturday and looking forward to riding.  The weather forecast was looking good and the sun was shining. 

We rode to coffee where we were met by Andy of Adventures with Bud E fame and also Meg - aka SpartanBabe.  Actually there were over a dozen people at coffee Saturday morning all with different plans for the day.  

We'd prearranged a ride to Eugene to meet up with SpartanBabe's hubby Josh, who'd ridden down earlier in the day.  Steve, riding his Harley Road King, also joined us for the ride.

The plan was to arrive in Eugene by 11:30 am to meet for lunch.  True to form we arrived at 12:10 pm.  Sorry you had to wait for us Josh.  We had lunch at the Cornbread Cafe but it wasn't as good as it had been in the past.  The food seemed really salty for some reason.

We left the cafe in Eugene and headed south. Three dual sports, two cruisers and Max. We were a motley crew.

The first stop was to check for directions and wait for Josh who was running behind due to stopping to fuel up his V-Strom.

(I managed to get all 6 bikes in this one)

(Troubadour and Steve)
Andy checked for directions and we decided which was the best way to go.  We were heading towards Territorial Road so that we could hook up with Hamm Rd towards Creswell.  It has a nice stretch of 15 mph twisties and switchbacks that no one can resists.  A GoPro would have been nice to have.

Once through the twisties the more experienced riders waited at a fire station for the rest of the group.  

(Troubadour giving me 'the look')

(Steve, Josh, Meg & Andy)
Across from the fire station was a beautiful pasture.  My zoom wasn't quite up to getting a close up of the cows though.

(Facing North - across from fire station)
I thought views of the road might be good too.

(Looking towards the West - where the twisties are)

(East towards Creswell)
Oooh look at the beautiful puffy white clouds against the blue sky.


We rode back over Hamm Road then down Territorial to the highway to Cottage Grove (<--- link shows Hamm Road and highway into Cottage Grove) where we stopped at the Safeway for Petrol and to use the facilities.  I didn't take any pictures because, well, it was a grocery store parking lot, not very exciting.

We relaxed for about half an hour and soaked up the sunshine with our jackets off. Steve and Andy decided to head out on a different route since they were aiming for the East side of the valley.

Josh, Meg, Troubadour and I suited up and headed back the way we came.  Instead of turning to wards Eugene we kept a bit west to Veneta then to Cheshire and north towards home.  We made a quick stop in Cheshire for a break since we were getting weary.

Again no more pictures.  

Out of the house before 9:00 am and arrived home at 6:00 pm.  A great day with great friends and great weather.  The best type of Saturday.  (193 miles, 310 km)

- Au Revoir

"Well trained reflexes are quicker than luck" - Author Unknown

Friday, April 13, 2012

Why Not....

On my way to the post office before work Tuesday morning, I was stopped at a red light on the corner of Jefferson and 4th Street in downtown Corvallis.

I noticed the building on the corner, which has been under construction for over a year, had tulips and Hyacinths blooming in a planter around it.  Luckily the red light was long and I had the camera with me.  

I took the above picture, but then the light changed so I couldn't get a zoomed in shot of the tulips.  
Yesterday morning as I drove by the sun happened to be shining and I managed to get a more wide angle picture to better show the placement of the flowers.

I am glad someone thought 'why not' and planted some tulips to spruce up the otherwise drab construction site.  When I see it, it makes me smile.

- Au Revoir

" People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us." - Iris Murdoch, in A Fairly Honourable Defeat

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sunny Sunday Ride

On Saturday SpartanBabe (aka Meg who just bought a Triumph America) came to join us at coffee and we discussed a possible ride for Sunday if the weather was nice.

Sunday dawned with nothing but blue skies and the promise of warm temperatures. Just before 9:00 am SpartanBabe sent us a text message stating she would be ready to roll at 11:30 am.  I sent her a message back and let her know we'd meet her at her house.  She was planning on riding around the east side of the valley and that suited us fine since we were having trouble coming up with ideas for a route.

Troubadour led me though the back roads for about 24 miles and we arrived with a few minutes to spare.  Troubadour parked in the driveway, but because of the incline I opted for parking at the end of the driveway since we were at the end of a cul-de-sac and I knew there wouldn't be any traffic.

Here  is Max all by himself at the end of the driveway.

Soon enough we were off.  Troubadour and SpartanBabe both needed fuel so we stopped at the Safeway petrol station.  I managed to snap a few more pics.

We headed east and turned this way and that, went south for a while along the river then east some more, then north a little.  I can't really tell you exactly where we were as I had no clue for most of the day.  I don't know much about the back roads on that side of the valley.  It is a good thing that SpartanBabe was gracious and led the way.

At one point she made a slight detour because she thought I'd be interested in a local covered bridge.  She was right.

The Thomas Creek (Shimanek) covered bridge.

(Thomas Creek - Shimanek Covered Bridge)

Oregon has the largest collections of covered bridges in the west and one of the largest in the nation.  For more information on the names and locations of our covered bridges please click this ---> link.

I also took a few other pictures while stopped.

(Notice how the Suzuki has to trail the Triumphs ....... kidding ...... I swept by choice)

(wide angle to show some terrain)

This was the last stop of the ride.  We looped around and ended back at SpartanBabe's house.  I think it was about 2:00 pm.  From there we headed home.

Round trip for us was 125 miles.  Not a long ride, but is sure was nice to be out in the sunshine.  A lot of other folks must have had the same idea as we saw a lot of other riders on the road.

When we arrived home the thermometer said it was 68˚F (20˚C) in the back yard in the shade.  We decided it was a perfect time to relax on the deck and just enjoy the warm weather for a bit.

This weekend is looking to be another warm one.  Fingers are crossed for some more riding.

- Au Revoir

"Live in the sunshine, swim in the sea, drink the wild air." - Ralph Waldo Emerson