Get your motor runnin’
Head out on the highway
Lookin’ for adventure
And whatever comes our way – Steppenwolf
The trip to Sturgis was underway and I was beginning to develop my great love for riding. I never got bored. There was so much to do. I found it to be the perfect time for singing as loud as you want since no one could hear you. That’s what I would do and when I wasn’t singing, I was thinking … thinking about new ideas and developing plots for what might be my first best seller or better yet, I was solving world problems. Depending on the time of day, I might have been thinking about what’s for lunch. With all that important thinking going on, by the time we stopped for gas, I had lots to say. Frank and I would fill up the tanks, get a cold beverage, cool down and share some of our brilliant ideas.
At one of our gas stops in Missouri we must have had a lot to say because we stopped for about a half hour. When we returned to our bikes I saw that my helmet had slipped off the seat and rested on the kick-starter. (My bike was a 1984 HD Softail – the last year Harley manufactured a bike with a kick starter) I know, it doesn’t sound like too much of a problem. The kick-starter does sort of look like a great place to hang your hat but, believe me, it’s not. It’s a little bit too close to the pipes. That’s where my chin strap was laying. Right over the pipes! Oh, terrific! It was burned in half. I tried on the helmet to see if the strap was long enough to fasten but it was too short. Now what? Missouri was a helmet law state and there wasn’t a place to buy a new one so I did all I could do. I took my chances and rode without one. We were just a hop, skip and a jump from the Iowa state line. Luck was on my side … Mission accomplished! No helmet, no ticket. It would be days before I needed a helmet again so I was home free for now.
Tip Number 7: Beware, the pipes on your bike, especially after a long ride, are very hot. Avoid touching them, brushing up against them and please be careful not to let your helmet strap lay over them. It will burn!