Category Archives: Road Tales

In a fast-paced world where most long journeys are viewed from 20,000+ feet in a jet airliner, we miss out on the detail afforded by the low viewing angle of a motorcycle saddle. In this category I have stored a collection of interesting experiences gleaned from years of motorcycle touring. Each tale may describe a multi-week trip, a single day, or one sublime instant. Some tales even have photographic evidence. While I post these tales largely for my own amusement, I have been told they have inspired some to try motorcycle touring. If so, then that seems like a useful purpose. May they help you realize that the universe still holds many thoughts to consider, humor to be enjoyed, and wonders to behold.

Memphis Cruise: Map, Stats, and Photos

Map

Here is the map for the Memphis Cruise. Click on the routes on the map to navigate to the trip report for that day.

hc_mc_map

Retrospective Note (2016): Back in 1997, Apple Maps and Google Maps didn’t exist yet. Consequently, the map is tiny and based on a screen shot of a MapQuest map.

Posts

Statistics

Total number of days: 6
Total miles: 1,807
Shortest Day: 62.9 miles (Day 4 – Around Memphis)
Longest Day: 400 miles (Day 6 – Corydon, IN to Ann Arbor, MI)
Average Miles/Day: 301.2/day
Number of States/Provinces visited: 5 (MI, OH, KY, TN, IN)
Average Miles per Gallon: 43.12

Photos

Memphis Cruise Preview

Earlier today, I accepted a full-time position; a “real” job that will mark the demise of the consulting business that I’ve been operating for the last four years.

As fate would have it, my new employer won’t be ready for me to start until the morning of May 28th, so I have some time to waste. Seeing as next weekend is the Memorial Day holiday, I know that tons of riders will be moving on Washington D.C. (Rolling Thunder), and crowds are something I want to avoid.

After some consideration, I decided to visit a museum exhibit of R.M.S. Titanic artifacts in Memphis, TN. Sound weird? Hell, it’s something worth doing and it gets me out on the road. Anyway, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Author’s Retrospective (2016)

This trip marked a significant nexus in my life. I was getting divorced. To keep the house, I had to shut down my technical communications business and (as noted in the text above) get a job that provided a steady, predictable paycheck. The plan was that my soon-to-be-ex wife would move the first set of stuff out of the house while I was away and move in with her folks. 

At the time, I would have never guessed that this trip would be the watershed moment that released a serious passion for crossing the country on two wheels. At the beginning of this trip, the Cruiser had a mere 19,444 miles on it. I still have this bike, and the odometer reads 148,116 miles. Between that and the 84,000+ on the Vector, I found one of my life’s primary sources of joy.

About the Trip Report Format

The trip reports that follow for this cruise are in letter form, as there were several individuals (e.g., Mother, wife, etc.) who were sure that I was going to die on the road. Consequently, I would write a daily email message and send it to those who needed to know that I was still alive and kicking. That’s why you may see side notes to my mother, father, wife, etc.

It’s worth noting that these trip reports were written on an Apple Newton and sent as email over not-always-convenient phone lines. For more details on this process, see the retrospective post Road Blogging Before the Internet was Ubiquitous.

Posted from Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States.