Getting Ever So Close

Day 10 I Think

July 18, 2008

Getting ever so close

Well today I did the unthinkable and awoke to an alarm clock. The only clock I use is my internal one and that is still on PDT. So I needed an alarm clock to get up early enough to make my 8 O’clock oil change appointment.

Holzhauer Auto and Motorsports and Everything Else was just down the road. It was easy to find. There was corn and then a place with ever imaginable thing that has an engine in it. From Shelby GT’s to Honda generators to Stingray, and Monterey boats to Honda, Suzuki and whatever else kind of motorcycle to Jet skis of all makes Atv’s of all brands, and Dodge and Ford trucks. What a pile of stuff.

Of course out of all that they had never actually sold a Can Am Spyder and the tobacco chewing kid who worked on my bike had only done one oil change on a Spyder. I asked if he could hook up the computer to it and see if there were any error codes and of course he said he could. Well then he went to a meeting on how to fill out his time card and about an hour later he started changing the oil. When done with that he tried the computer thing but I think an anvil and hammer were more his style. After three hours of putzing around with it I had him button it up so I could get on my way. I guess I will have to wait until I get back to Marina Boat Sales in Lodi before I get any serious work done on the Recluse. These were really nice people and I am glad they took me in. I am not sure that I appreciate BRP letting them learn to shave using my beard.

So after a $122 oil change I was back on the road. I made my way back to Route 66 cutting through the corn fields. It is all corn fields. And it is flat. And they have the biggest bugs. And they wear helmets. When they hit my face shield it sounded like they had broken it. I thought how smart I was to have bought a new helmet way back in California because these bugs would have left a divot.

I did not travel far before it was time for lunch and I stopped at Myra’s on Route 66. I have been stopping at all of these non chain diners and café’s along the way and doing very well at them. Judging by my waistline a little too well. They all play fifties and sixties music and seem like they are stuck in a time warp. Fast food chains have ruined eating in America. I had a delightful salad, did the necessary flirting with the skinny blond waitress and was on my way again.

Finding Route 66 was fairly easy but it only ran for a short ways before it would either stop entirely or join up with the Interstate. I noticed that a lot of the signs had been stolen. In Arizona they stop this pilferage by painting the sign right on the road. Of course you have to be ON the road before you see the sign so it is more of a confirmation than any real use in navigating. In Illinois it was rather well marked but always a challenge to stay with it.

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Route 66 Illinois

Route 66 through Illinois is much like it was in Missouri. It is used every day and is not all that remarkable. Whenever I did get on it, there was my old friend the railroad running right next to it. It was comforting to know that I can always take the train home. And of course the people I meet along the way are really interesting. Like Eugene Craft of Atlanta, Illinois who is the quintessential farm with coveralls, a wide grin, and all day to talk to you while the corn grows. If you are ever in the area stop by Craft Farm. I think they grow corn.

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Covered Bridge Illinois

It got hot. And then it got cold. And then the skies opened up. I pulled over and put on my rain gear and the rain gear for the saddlebags and motored on just a short ways. I found a motel that would have me and pulled in for the night. Since my riding gear was already soaked and the bike was real dirty, I just grabbed a towel and gave it a good wash, out in this downpour. When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. Now the bike has fresh oil and a wash job.

So I am 90 short miles from Shoreline Drive in Chicago. I don’t think I will have trouble finding it since I hear Lake Michigan is pretty big as lakes go. Tonight I have to decide what to do next. I have decided to let my adoring public vote.

The choices are:

A) Get on I-80 and head directly back to California some 2200 mile away. Fast, safe, boring

B) Continue on to visit Big Butter Jesus some 300 miles further and then return home.

C) Visit Big Butter Jesus and then continue to the East Coast and take Hwy 50 from one end to the other.

D) Forget about BBJ and take the northern route home through Black Hills, Yellowstone Park, Glacier Park, Washington, Oregon and then home.

E) Park the bike and quit boring you guys with all of this.

Let me know what your choice is. I live to serve.

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Not everyone rolls balls of twine. Some paint water towers.

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