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Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday: McCall to Sun Valley

Notes from the ChildLine Rocks charity motorcycle ride through BC, AB, MT and ID:

I've given up any hope that I might be able to use the desk in my room until I get home, so I am journaling this from the lobby again. Although to be honest, having only the bed as my workspace kind of makes up for the dormitory experience I was not able to have as a kid.

Sun Valley is awesome and I am exhausted. We're down from the higher mountains and most of the ride was valley riding. On the way in, last Sunday, one of the riders was looking at the road from the windows of the bus and excitedly telling me how he would do "100 or 120 on this road." I've been riding for a long time, but I have to admit this intimidated me a bit. Sure I like to go fast, and I've been known to do 100 mph on occasion, but up in the mountains? On an unfamiliar bike? On unfamiliar roads? Not me.

Well, it turns out, he was talking kilometers per hour, not miles per hour, so 100 kmh is actually, in real, American numbers, 60 mph. Hell, I do that on my way to Wawa to get a buttered roll and a chocolate milk in the morning. So all of this speed I was hearing about was really just mildly reaching most of the speed limits we encountered.

Spent the day learning how to say "hello" with a proper British accent from one of the funniest people I have encountered in a long time. It's simple, just say "hair" followed by "lair." Keep the 'h' short, flatten the r's and raise the second syllable as if asking a question. As I rode, I switched between singing the Rawhide song and saying hairlair.

As water finds its own level, so do motorcycle riders. The back end of the trip I spent with the two or three other riders who understood all about the journey and not about attempting to be in one long, boring episode of Top Gear, or fearing for my life.

My lip is sunburned, which is something new, and it really hurts.

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