Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Road Tripping the Light Fantastic

DAY ONE: At 4:30 Saturday morning Troubadour and I reluctantly dragged our behinds out of bed to get ready for the road trip to Seattle for the International Motorcycle Show. In the pouring rain at 5:45 am RickRick picked us up in Tedward the Isuzu Trooper and with a quick stop to pick up Bolty we were on our way .

We stopped in Wilsonville at Starbucks for a potty break and a pick-me-up. Sufficiently rested and coffee in hand we headed north again. We made a few stops along the way for gas and to stretch our legs. Soon enough we were at Qwest Field Events Center and looking for our friends Douglas and Eddy who journeyed up together for the day.

This picture shows them hamming it up at the Honda booth. Eddy on the left and Douglas on the right.

Bolty went off to volunteer at the women's center booth and the rest of us headed for lunch as we were starving. Luckily a Pyramid Alehouse was only a short walk. We were too hungry to take pics, but we did have a nice meal of battered fish sandwiches and club soda. It was nice to relax and visit with some friends we hadn't seen in a while.

Back to the show we went and wandered around to look at the bikes and take some pictures.

Troubadour sat on a Harley but wasn't impressed....

He was equally unimpressed with the Victory finding it quite long.

Rick sat on a Victory and Eddy helped him mug for the camera....

I found the 2011 Suzuki TU 250. I like my red one better, but why does it look so small with me perched on it?

Troubadour tried on some Arai helmets..... ooooh...... ahhhhh....

I saw this t-shirt and had to take a picture. Funny how shirts like these don't usually come in sizes large enough to cover those who need it the most,wink-wink, nudge-nudge..... Don't ask me why the mannequin was cold, I have no idea....

Speaking of headlights, I was intrigued by this ensemble....

Time for a group picture....

Rick having entirely too much fun on the Honda Fury.....

Me on the Suzuki GS 500F (wish it wasn't an F model)

And after much texting and playing "Marco - Polo" through the Expo Center we caught up with Bobskoot and Mrs. Skoot. I managed to get Bobskoot and Troubadour to stand still long enough to pose for a picture.

I found the most comfortable and my favorite bike at the show was the Ducati Monster 696. (Of course Triumph wasn't there or it may have had a different outcome)

When looking at the specs, the ergonomics are almost identical to a Triumph Street Triple while the cost is about $500-$1000 less. I have been warned away though due to the rumored high cost of maintenance and upkeep. Any info and/or experience in this area I would appreciate hearing.

Having wandered around for almost 5 hours we made our way back to the parking garage and took a few pics on the way.

We found the hotel and checked into our room. Standard room, king bed, nothing to get excited about. However, I was impressed with the cleanliness and we left housekeeping a nice tip upon checkout Sunday morning.

Rick suggested Buca di Beppo for dinner. It was a great family style Italian restaurant. We ate way too much but it was nice once again to sit and visit with friends we had not seen in a while. We did not get any pictures in the restaurant but Bobskoot had his camera at the ready and I'm sure he will favor us with some pictures. The food was amazing, as was the Frozen Peach Bellini.

We returned to the hotel and sat around the gas fireplace drinking juice and visiting some more. Soon it was 10:30 and we all headed to our rooms to turn in. I think we finally made it to bed by about 11:30.

All in all it was a great day..... stay tuned for day two.

-Au Revoir

"Friends are relatives you make for yourself." ~ Eustache Deschamps


  1. Too bad we missed you guys. It would have been fun! You look awesome on the Duck, but if I had the budget I would go for the Striple Trumpet any time.
    Hope to see you sometime next year? If you got plans to go up to BC let me know...

  2. It looks like the Monster was made for you. Ducati's have an incredible heart beat, and to hear one can bring one's passionate Italian soul to the surface causing you to go into debt before you know what has happened. I think given the choice of Monster or Street Triple, I would take the Italian Monster. Putting passion aside it would behoove you to research the routine maintenance schedule and cost as Ducati's do have a somewhat unusual valve train. If only there was more garage space and money....

    I'm curious as to what bike had the pointed head light?

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. The Seattle IMS looked a little empty both vendors and attendees. Were there very many manufactures represented? I actually thought the Harley shown looked pretty good. All blacked out, standard controls and I must admit that I still love the way many stock Harleys sound at idle and they do seem to have a lot of torque at low rpm. (kind of like a diesel) Going to one of these shows would be fun since I have never really went bike shopping before.


  4. Ducati or trumpy.......both great bikes. Some neat pics there thanks for sharing.

  5. I wondered how the trip went. I know you guys talked about taking the train and when I heard they were blocked by slides, I hoped you weren't going to be stuck in that mess. It doesn't look like the show was very busy in some of the photos.

    Eyes up. I tell my self that all the time in the it's gonna have new meaning, lol.

    That Monster looks like a nice fit! Wicked, sexy bike!

  6. You do look good on the Duc! Someone once told me that all Italian bikes seem to be built on a Friday, but if you have a good dealer that can straighten them out they're gold. Don't have any experience. I'm just a small displacement guy. Did any of the guys sit on the CBR250? And if they did, did they look like Gulliver?

  7. +1 on the vote of you looking good on the Duc. Very nice. But that stigma of cost and leakage... The Triple is definitely something to look at. :) Great pictures of all!! -Lori

  8. GAW, the pointed headlight was a 2011 Honda CB1000R.

    Keith, I sat on the CBR250 and thought it a very nice bike, it really didn't feel small and fit quite nicely. Much nicer looking than the old Nighthawks and should give Kawasaki a run. It was very popular with the ladies.

  9. Thanks for the feedback on the CBR250. I appreciate it.

  10. Trobairitz:
    I tried the Monster 696 and Thruxton Bonneville when I was looking at buying the Street Triple. At 5'8", seat height was one of my major criteria and all 3 bikes filled that admirably. However, for me, the ergonomics of the Monster and Bonnie just weren't as good as the Triple. Within a minute or two of getting on it, everything felt "right". And this was coming from a Honda Blackbird! Its light weight and low C of G means I've had no low speed/parking "oh sh*t" moments which were occasionally experienced on the Blackbird!

    I don't know whether you've seen it, but my long term Triple evaluation is here:, with some earlier posts on the subject too.