The Bumblebee and the Vespa 2014

I think it's time for me to redefine what this new blog is about. In the past I've posted individual blogs for motorcycle/motor scooter rides to places like Alaska, Nova Scotia, Key West, Mexico, Canada, New York, etc. That's all well and good but it seems nowadays I'm dividing my rides into shorter ones comprised of two or more weeks each on different bikes. The total time and mileage is about the same, it's just split into multiple rides with a break somewhere in the middle.

The summer of 2014 serves as a good example of that wherein I rode south to Tombstone, AZ on my '92 BMW R100GS Bumblebee/Ural sidecar rig, (phew!) then returned home for a few days and set out again on my '07 Vespa 250ie motor scooter to visit Canada. That summer has gone and the seasons have changed as will the reports, some will be about shorter rides, some will be about maintenance, and maybe on occasion I'll post a photo or two just for interest. I may even introduce other bikes, a few of which are lurking under cover in the barn...

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Friday, July 4, 2014

Jul 04 - Day 11 Bumblebee - Brigham City, UT

Well whoop-de-doo, it's the 4th of July and I'm celebrating way out here in the middle of Utah's back country. How much more excitement can an old geezer like me handle?

Fireworks? We don' got no stinkin' fireworks! Hey, am I starting to look like a traffic cop? License and registration please.
Another manly meal at the Super 8 this morning. The breakfast room was crawling with whatcha call yer Indonesians, all dressed up for the special holiday. I wonder if they were expecting fireworks or something akin to that way out here in the sticker bushes? Did the tour bus people mislead them ever so slightly?

BTW, I've observed there's a preponderance [Ha! the spell checker went wiggo over the way I spelled that one] Anyway what I was alluding to, it seems that the Hospitality biz in America has been taken over by those folks. Nearly every place I stay in is operated by them and I see more each year. Must be an industry ripe for the picking and they're taking advantage of it. Or maybe all the 7-Elevens got snapped up and it was time to move on?  No complaints here, they seem to know what they're doing and that's good enough for me.

Last night I had an attack of loss of adventuring spirit so instead of just hitting the road per usual I decided to reserve a room somewhere. Man what a wuss I've become. I talked to the front desk guy [who was not an Indonesian] and asked what he thought the odds might be of scoring a room on the 4th just by showing up. That seemed to have touched his funny bone so I went back to my room and dialed 1-800 Reservations R Us or whoever handles those things and they hooked me up with the Days Inn in Brigham City, a little over 240 miles down the road. Or up the road if you're looking at a map and have it oriented with north at the top of the page. But I digress, this isn't about map reading.

Setting out all glassy-eyed and full of Independence Day vigor I headed north on a semi-quiet little 2-lane, one of those tracks with two designations, 6 and 191. Never could come to terms with that silliness, why the heck don't they just call it by one name?

I took a few pics along the route and per usual what I see with my eye the dumb camera is clueless to. I'll tell you this though, Utah's desert country is infested with gazillions of small flying bug critters that are relentless with their attacks on the unsuspecting would-be photographer.

This was just a couple of miles from my Green River motel.

Telephotos just never seem to work well for me. Has something to do with my body's natural resonator frequency I think.. Sorta wobbly. You know those image stabilization features the camera sales people lie to you about? My cameras all have that and they all produce similar results, maximum fuzziness. 

And of course this is the ever-luverly Green River itself. Yup.

I was really smitten with this view as I crested the hill so I u-turned the BB and headed back up to the top just so I could capture it. Only thing is, I got captured by swarms of hungry little flying critters so I moved on without fine-tuning the shot. 
More pretty pointy rock formations. If I were an old Indian instead of an old geezer I'd make up really scary stories about them for the grandkiddies, maybe how Big Foot resides there, that sort of thing. My granddad introduced me to the boogie-man whom he claimed lived in his barn but that's another tale. I never set foot inside that barn.
Boy I like the smell of new-mowed hay. Farm boy, that's me. This is my favorite photo.
This was another "roadside attraction", this time it was all about Utah's coal industry and included monuments to victims of mining disasters. Mining has to be one of the most dangerous vocations there is, definitely not one I'd be interested in. 

Look closely on the right side of the photo and you can see a guy on a cat pushing piles of coal around way down the canyon. Imagine doing that all day long every day. Eww....

Sad memorial testifies to the inherent dangers of the mining industry. 

A more recent disaster closed the mine, I think for good. 

This is what it's all about, black gold

I've no idea why I took this shot except it was pretty and that was good enough. That long black horizontal line looks like it must be coal. 

This kind of sums up what Coal means to Utah. The end. 
Another festive 4th of July has gone. Bugger all I hate it when that happens. BTW, I saw more state troopers having a field day with law breakers today. They missed me as I was being a good boy. 234 happy miles today.

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