Tuesday, June 12, 2018

That's a beginner's bike, isn't it?

After a light lunch, I took the Vespa out for a cruise.  Well, I was intending to find the current scooter tag: your scooter by ornate cornices (the scrolly stuff on some older, fancy buildings)... this is south Texas - our architecture style could best be described as "Spanish hacienda with a touch of island casual."  I looked all around our town... looked at some fancy homes, schools, churches... this place was a blue collar shrimping/fishing town before tourism came around - not much fancy architecture here.

I rode to the next town down the road.  Nada.  Then, the next town, still on the bay (Laguna)... nope.  Not a big "loss," I got in a nice ride.  Oh, it was hot and windy (the thermometer on the Vespa read 95º once away from the water, the wind was gusting around 25mph)... but, it was a good test of the Laminar Lip windshield attachment: 55mph into a 25mph quartering headwind... yep, this thing does as advertised!

Helmet shield up or down, the noise level is WAY less.

When I got back to the bridge to get on our island...

Yep, the gate was just coming down as I approached.  I took this photo to show the rack on the back of the scoot: that's the base plate for the top case.  I had to take stuff to the garbage when I left home, so I took the top box off and strapped the garbage to the rack.

Joan asked if I'd check mail on the way in.  Yes, I'm still giddy about having the new mailboxes.  Just a small catalog from Camping World (can't believe anyone still sends those out).  Back at my scoot, I saw Bob looking it over.  A little background: Bob is a widower; he had been married to Jo, a nice lady to discovered motorcycle riding when she was about 70 years old.  Bob's balance wasn't good when Jo was alive, so she mostly rode by herself... and she rode a lot.  Long distance kinda stuff.  Bob was always proud of her.  I'm guessing Bob is well into his 80s, and his memory isn't what it used to be.

He started telling me about his late wife's motorcycling.  "Yes, Bob, I remember Jo - she was a good rider."

"You knew her?" he asked.

"We've owned here for 20 years.  I remember when she used to work in the Activities Office; I think everyone around here knew Jo."

Bob doesn't remember that I've talked to him several times regarding the Honda scooters in the past (we seem to wind up at the mailboxes at the same time now and then).  He would like to ride again, but there is still that balance issue.  He looked at my Vespa and said, "That's sharp looking - that's pretty much a beginner's bike, isn't it?"

I chuckled and said, "Well, I'm pretty new at this... only been riding about 50 years.  This gets the job done for me."

"Is that a Honda?"

"No, that's a Vespa."

"I don't think I've heard of that before.  My wife used to have a Honda."

"Yeah, Bob, I remember Jo's Honda Shadow."

"You knew my wife?"

"Yes, sir, I did."

Then he said, "Well, I have to go now."

Back at home, I took a moment to download photos before cleaning up.  My furry boy hopped up on the back of the couch...

Joan said, "He really missed you.  He heard when you pulled up and has been meowing at the door."

I probably haven't mentioned this before: he is such a good boy!

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