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Day 183 – 9th June 09

Posted by TravellingStrom on June 9, 2009

Tuesday – Wytheville, Virginia

I actually met the DeathStalker today 🙂

The day started out sunny which is a big relief, I wonder how long that would last 🙂 I spoke to Deathstalker and sort of arranged to meet around lunchtime at his work address. I had a late start though because it was real hard to upload photos to Photobucket for some reason. After a struggle I managed it OK and set off around 10am, this is where I stayed.

Of course I needed to get back on the parkway, which was about 20 miles away, so by the time I was on the parkway where I left it yesterday, it was nearly 11am and no chance of getting to Wytheville by 1pm. I would phone DS a bit later and advise of the change in timing.

That is a picture of my Tyre Watch system, finally after all this time, since October last year, it is all working how it should. Mind you, the battery level in top right shows it will soon need a new battery in the main unit, that is just a watch battery, and should be reasonably easy to find, I hope. Mind you, where do you go in this country for watch batteries, anyone?

I could see a nice mountain view ahead, it turned out to be Grandfather Mountain, which I saw once again when I got onto the parkway itself.

The day started off real well, some nice relaxing roads to ride, some excellent views and I even managed a close up of those flowers that littered the bush around here. Imagine if all those hills had roads in them, you could spend a month here then and probably still not ride them all 🙂

But of course this did not last, more road works, I have no idea where these detours took me except at one stage I was back in Boone.

I have no sooner got back on the parkway after this effort, when the next one occurred and I was not going to ride up 9 miles, just to turn around.

This took me south for some reason, I wanted to go north, very frustrating, but it eventually ended after some 40 minutes of bush bashing American style, even past a heap of Xmas tree farms. That small orange sign in the middle of the last pix says ‘end roadwork’, a very welcome sign indeed.

Then back to the action, more views from the lookouts and more twisty roads, still limited to 50mph though, what a shame.

There have been heaps of bikes around of course, but very rarely do I have my camera ready when I need it. That is how most of the bikers over here wave at you, just hang the paw out the side of the bike, I still do the vertical hand raised thing.

I stopped for lunch at the Bluffs diner which was very nice, when I left I saw this old 66 Oldsmobile, I found out later there was a rally of sorts, not racing, just a get together of old cars, something like ACCA, which I guess means American Classic Car Association or some such, but there was a heap of the old cars around.

After lunch on my way again, but I at least had managed to phone DS. My cell did not work, but the lady in the shop lent me hers, so I could advise him of my lateness.

An interesting bit of stuff 🙂 There was not much to read up here, so it is good to find some.

Well, this was a bummer. I knew I was entering Virginia at some stage and my GPS showed me crossing the state line, but there was no welcome sign at all, all I saw was a small sign saying ‘Parkway Virginia’. I would have to find a sign when leaving the state I guess.

After a short while into the state, I found the exit I needed, this was at a place called Fancy Gap, and was the road to Wytheville, about 40 mile away.

While I was making adjustments to my iPod I noticed this VW, no way would that be allowed on the road in Oz, not without finger guards and safety guards around the engine anyway, I should know, I built one 🙂

Of course the day did not go without me getting rained upon, so once again on with the gear, I was only 20 mile from stopping as well 🙂

Of course it only lasted 5 minutes, just enough time to get the gear on and start moving again, lol. Well, I was not stopping again, I would wait until I got to DeathStalker’s work site before I removed the gear, or so I thought. Anyway, after some leisurely country back roads riding I got into Wytheville and promptly was stumped. My GPS took me to this street which was nowhere near a lumber yard?? Hmm, it was hot so I got rid of my wet gear at this point!

I asked a local kid, but he had no idea where the street was, so I asked a lady just driving away from her house. She dialled in the address into her GPS and went for a drive, came back and told me it was 3 streets down the hill! Dumb local kids eh, well I thanked her and went down the hill, this was the problem, as I was riding, my GPS showed me OFF the road which is why it could not find the damm street properly, I hit the correct button and then it was OK. Those houses up there on that hill is where I was originally, so not far away 🙂

So, I finally met up with DeathStalker and his sister. DS and I have been internet friends for years and years, back when 28k dial up modems were king, remember them 🙂

He had no space at his place so I grabbed a motel nearby, well nearby a pub actually 🙂 He rocked in with a 65 Mustang and we promptly went to the Sagehouse Steakhouse for a few beers 🙂

Now, the music was country which we both did not like, so after a few beers we headed back to the motel for a few rums, thanks Lesley and Jim 🙂 But, not before I confused this poor serving lady 🙂

I was looking through the menu for a feed and saw something called Buffalo Wings, now I know pigs can’t fly and there is only a certain part of a buffalo that could be designated wings, and I was not sure I wanted to eat that, so I had to ask. It turns out that it is called that, but in actual fact it is chicken wings, cooked a certain way that originated in Buffalo New York 🙂 You learn something new every day over here 🙂

Well, we had some rum and coke, courtesy of the drink machine, played some music on my laptop that we both liked and basically just bullshitted for a while, I even learnt why he used the name DeathStalker as his net nick, he just liked the bad movie 🙂

It was a great evening, nice to have finally met up with you DS, maybe one day you will do the Downunder thing and come and visit me, assuming I am home:)

Day – 183 miles and 295 km
Trip – 17,475 miles and 28,123km


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16 Responses to “Day 183 – 9th June 09”

  1. Heya Richard,

    About the watch battery thing. You should be able to get them at any Walmart or at a pharmacy. Both usually have them. Well, I am finishing some last minute preparations on my Strom for my trip to Rapid City.

    We are going up via Colorado Springs, Colorado. The guy I am riding with has an old girlfriend there. I thought while he was visiting I might take the Strom up Pikes Peak. Anyway, nice ride report and I am glad you got to meet your friend DS.

    • travellingstrom said

      Hi Charlie Thanks for th etip on pharmaccies, I actually thought about that after I posted, but it is good to get it confirmed. Have a great trip up the peak, I intend to do that soon as well 🙂 See ya at Rapid City Cheers TS

  2. DS said

    Was nice to meet you TS, hope you have a good time on the rest of your trip… Looks like you’re about a days ride from Buffalo so you can get more wings… 🙂

    The old cars were probably AACA, Antique Automobile Club of America…

    • DS said

      Found the cars, it was the VMCCA Chrome Tour, they were cruising in the same area you were in… Some members of the Twin County Region AACA were with them…

    • travellingstrom said

      Ahh, that sounds more like it, there were some model Ts as well as the late 50s that I recognised, so that would be closer to the mark. Yep, more wings eh! And I have 340 all in a spin as well, getting canadian wings maybe 🙂 The sucker wants me to drink water, I told him fish F^%$ in it ! Cheers TS

  3. Bruce in WA said

    G’day mate

    Just flew in from the USA today, so am still jet-lagged.

    You have a “doppelganger” in the US; saw him at Disneyland on Wednesday. I was 100% convinced it was you; he was being given a “tour” one-on-one by one of the Disney “cast members”. Then as I went to speak to him, I heard his accent, and it was pure American.

    God, he was like you — even down to the clothes!!!!


  4. Muddy922 said

    The flowers on the bushes are Rododendrons.
    Rhododendron (from the Greek: rhodos, “rose”, and dendron, “tree”) is a genus of flowering plants in the family Ericaceae. It is a large genus with over 1000 species and most have showy flower displays. It includes the plants known to gardeners as azaleas. It is the national flower of Nepal.

    The Rhododendron is a genus characterized by shrubs and small to (rarely) large trees, the smallest species growing to 10-100 cm tall, and the largest, R. giganteum, reported to over 30 m tall[1]. The leaves are spirally arranged; leaf size can range from 1-2 cm to over 50 cm, exceptionally 100 cm in R. sinogrande. They may be either evergreen or deciduous. In some species the underside of the leaves is covered with scales (lepidote) or hairs (indumentum). Some of the best known species are noted for their many clusters of large flowers. There are alpine species with small flowers and small leaves, and tropical species such as section Vireya that often grow as epiphytes.

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