Total Distance: 633 miles/ 1018 km
I have now covered in excess of 500 miles, the dash registers 76 mph, 5k rpm, my mind decelerates as I glide pass a mammoth lorry and the digitally connected yet absent minded cage operator verifying his irrelevant status in my realm. I surf to renew this state, the moment where irrelevant complexities are simply that, irrelevant. If only for this fleeting instance, I will indulge, indulge in Moto-bliss. As I surf I recalled this quote: The Secret of Change Is to Focus All of Your Energy, Not on Fighting the Old, But on Building the New (Socrates?). Thus all of my energy is focused on this micro-occurrence as the catalyst for momentum forward. In this moment, all that matters are the electrical impulses being transfer to a machine that propels me forward as a metaphor for my existence. In this realm time perception is suspended, and it is here that I find what I seek.
Temperature range: 65F-81F Cloudy/Sunny, 18C/27C
Best mpg: 62 mpg
Best mpg: 62 mpg
|The Vstrom 650 and Ibex ready to Surf|
Dublin, Ohio to Paw Paw Michigan
The anticipation has begun, it overtakes your senses and awakens you. One anticipates the road, the sights, the smells, the opportunity to launch oneself into the unknown. On a Friday afternoon my friends SoParider and SoPaguider (SPR & SPG) rolled into Columbus from the East, whom I had not seen in a while. A week prior I opened their phenomenal digital invitation to accompany them for part of their cross-country tour. Instinctively, there is only one response that will resonate, I'm in. Quotidian obligations must be deferred, the fish, laundry, emails, phone calls, it all can wait and preparations must begin. It has been sometime since I have gone on a proper tour and never before have I toured with friends, a welcome deviation.
|Trip preparations begin long before these physical manisfestations|
Has a friend ever told you, hey if I am ever in town I will look you up and never does. That's not my friends. On a Saturday morning at around 0825 two motor bikes, three riders depart Dublin, Ohio, destination; Paw Paw, Michigan. SoParider is a master route planner and has meticulously drafted a route void of super slabs and irrelevant distractions such as big rigs, golf courses and mega malls. Instead we will be surfing the best unknown roads a State has to offer. Direct routes are for individuals keen on missing the idiosyncrasies that are the essence of an adventure. Indirect routes are for individuals whom welcome rural Main Streets with 25 mph speed limits, mermaid festival parades, grain silos, dilapidated barns, jovial bovines an a 1842 edifice that now serves as the local book repository.
The weather forecast has toyed with our emotions all week long, predicting rain with variable degrees of intensity, ready or not kickstand are up and we are rolling along. The skies are unreliable, overcast with Nimbus clouds in the distance ready to intercept our path. SPR & SPG lead the way as I follow three seconds back, the actual route is unknown to me and that is irrelevant at this point, the task at hand is simple: Ride uninhibitedly. The ever evasive Moto bliss awaits if only one is receptive enough to notice. The pace is relaxed yet extended, SPR & SPG are proficient Surfers and have earned their bonafide touring credentials, where as I aspire to renew mine.
We managed to reach the halfway point dry, until the clouds once again toy with us and release just enough water to awaken us and quickly dissipate. In a world fully connected (unnecessarily) and excessive moto-horsepower, SPR & SPG and I are riding modest steeds, unplugged. This is old school navigating, you are never lost rather exploring, one takes unplanned turns that lead to more adventures. All communication is visual, two steeds, three riders surfing in unison, Beautiful indeed. This was my first visit to Michigan (the farthest I have surfed West) and Michigan delivered with its smooth undulating roads. It is now late afternoon we have been surfing for nearly eight hours, my new two-piece suit (review forthcoming) is performing flawlessly, Ibex is surfing at a constant rate of speed, Rider and machine are now sync. Except my body is protesting, my throttle hand is numb, my lower back is failing to support me, my derrière wants to lift off like a rocket and Ibex seems to have inexplicably gained weight and is becoming unwieldy. We finally reached our destination safely and serene.
Paw Paw Michigan to Columbus, Ohio
From my few decades of existence on this blue Sphere I have now learned that I prefer see you soon as my parting greeting as opposed to good bye, thus parting greetings were exchanged as we headed in opposite directions. SPR & SPG are heading to the West Coast and I must return East. This is a more familiar circumstance, one rider one steed, minor trepidation full anticipation of a solo Ride. There is only one way to overcome it, double down on your existence, make peace with the world mount your steed and Ride. I have the luxury of zero commitments, zero responsibilities for the day, so I plan a route that will take me through some back roads and catapult me on to a super slab disguised as OH state road 33. The weather is exquisite, like a freshly out-of-the oven orange brioche, the wind is consistent, the sun radiates and energizes, the road is demanding yet smooth and Ibex's parallel twin engine throttle response is intoxicating. I know that today I will Surf, and the time is now. I roll the throttle and proceed to indulge.
|The ritual: pack-ride-unpack repeat|
|The view from the Cockpit|
And you may asked what does Pure perfection look like? I'm unable to answer that, I can only narrate what it feels like, Intuitively Effortless. If you were to be granted a wish with exactly what you asked for, would you know what to do with this Gift? My name is Fredo, I'm a TarmacSurfer and this is my reality, exponentially beautiful reality.
SPR & SPG, with friends like you I gladly welcome the future. Safe travels.