Monday, September 12, 2011

Making deliveries

This past Wednesday-Friday, I was scheduled to conduct a morning intermediate riding course in the morning and one in the afternoon.  Honestly, I hoped that there would not be enough students to run the course.  One must have at least 6 students to begin a course, otherwise it can’t run.  A full class is 12 students.  The morning class only has two people on the class roster.  Both of the people on the roster did not show up.  However 9 students got in as walkins.  The afternoon class had one person on the roster.  She did not show but 2 walkins showed up and the class was a no go.  For someone who is working full time plus full weekends, time off gets to be a treat.  I have scheduled off 3 1/2 weeks of vacation to teach motorcycle classes as well.

So what to do with myself was the first question to be answered.  Abigail, my wife, had done some major school clothes shopping for my granddaughters.  I knew that they really needed the clothes.  The forecast for Thursday was rain all day.  The morning class was overcast.  I went home after class, checked the radar and it looked like I could make it to Champaign dry (120 miles).  The ride home was questionable.  Nice thing about the Concours is that is has a great fairing and 3 hard cases. 2 were filled with the school clothes and one had what it always has, rain gear, tool kit, air compressor, etc…  The ride down was a breeze with a strong tail wind and completely overcast skies.  After dropping of the clothes at my daughters job, I dropped by the Motorcycle Rider Program Office to drop off a packet for a finished class since I was in the area.  Before leaving, the radar looked like I might get a little wet.  After leaving the office I filled up the Connie as it rain. 

HPIM7282It continued to rain the entire way home.  Just a steady rain, riding on superslab, with very little traffic.  All said, I enjoyed the ride home just as much as the ride down. 

Knowing that I would probably ride home in the rain meant I wanted to do it during daylight hours.  The only regret I have is that I didn’t stay around long enough to so see the granddaughters.  School is in session and they go straight to the daycare program.  Riding long along in the rain with little traffic allows one to reflect.  This ride I thought of how full and satisfying my like was when they lived with me for that full year.  My schedule was crazy, but I thoroughly enjoyed the daily routine with them.  Cooking breakfast and dinner with them.  They went on the long walks with the dogs (2 miles) every night.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Labor Day Weekend

The 3 day weekend was the first weekend that I have had off from teaching MC classes.  It was the last weekend off until after Halloween.  According to the schedule I will have taught 37 basic classes and 2 intermediate classes.  The intermediate classes are a compressed basic class (10 hours) and the students need to come knowing how to ride along with already having a permit.  The class is designed for returning riders and riders who are looking to get legit.  There are so many riders who get without either the permit or a license.  I have taught of few of the intermediate classes over the last couple of years.  The first two exercises are meant to be screening exercises.  If the rider doesn’t demonstrate efficient shifting and stopping skills, he/she is excused from the class and encouraged to take the full basic course.

The weekend was punctuated by carpet cleaning Saturday, church and a 9.5 mile run on Sunday, and a bicycle ride with my wife on Old Plank Trail.  I had looked forward to riding beyond our normal turnaround spot in downtown Frankfort.  However, when we arrived to find a Fall Festival taking place in it’s downtown.  We parked the bikes and walked like cattle from one craft vendor to the next.  After a granola bar and a drink, we pedaled back to Matteson.