Scoot Commute

Well How do you Do?

On Wednesday I had a bike cop give me a nod as I rode back to campus from my lunch foray, most likely because I was grinning like the idiot I’ve become on the DRZ. But on Thursday, as I was riding home, I had a bike cop nod and wave to me as I was stopped at the light at Dean & Atwells. Everyone is enjoying this crazy early spring weather!

Elsa at Lincoln Woods

Elsa at Lincoln Woods for a lunchtime ride

I went out again at lunch on Thursday, a quick ride up to Lincoln Woods. I thought it’d be a nice ride through the park and then back to campus, easy peasy, less than 45 minutes. I took 246 up to Lincoln because it’s a slow, meandering road that parallels the highway. When I entered the park, I slowly headed ’round the Loop, only to discover that most of the roadway was closed due to what I suspect must be bad flooding from the Biblical rains we received over the weekend. Oh well, so much for that. I did get off and walk around in the mud some. Interesting people hanging out at Lincoln Woods in the middle of the day. Seniors and stoners.

Heading back to campus, I thought, ‘hey, why not take 146 (the highway) to Admiral? That would avoid a lot of traffic and stop lights.’ As I rode up Twin River Road, I saw the left turn for 146S. Should I do it? Not like I haven’t ridden on interstates (I’ve even brought the Buddy on I-195, woohoo!), but this would be my first time on this bike and alone. That’s right, I usually ride with at least one other person, or I stay on secondary/tertiary roads.

Do it! I swung into the left turn lane. Red light. I didn’t trip the green arrow, so I waited for oncoming traffic to clear, and then swung Elsa left onto the on-ramp. I merged onto 146S and opened up the throttle. The speedo read about 63mph the few exits I was on (posted 55mph) and I had no issues keeping up with traffic. I’m no fan of the wind buffetting. I sometimes feel like a big gust will force me back so fast that my hands will come off the grips. Do people really like riding on the highway? I felt like I was cheating.

Apparently one of the students recognized me as I was coming back to campus because she sent me an email. Pink helmet gets me called out every time!

Last night Erik and I went out to grab a bite at Bob & Timmy’s. Because the Dream’s clutch is hanging by two threads (literally) and the /5 is acting up (he’s got to finish up the tune-up), and neither of us have had the Vespa out this winter, I suggested he just take the Buddy and I’ll ride the DRZ. At first he protested and said he’d get the Vespa going, but then he changed his mind and agreed on the Buddy. His initial reason for not wanting to ride it is because the brakes mess him up (both levers are brakes; the rear brake is not a foot brake). To me that’s a majorly lame excuse because none of the bikes I ride have the same controls (well, except for the CB350 and 750, but I still haven’t actually ridden the 350 yet) and I manage ok.

I led the way and it was kind of fun watching the Buddy in my mirror. The front light is bright! When we got to the restaurant, we found a sliver of a parking spot (it’s March Madness in Providence so there are a lot of people in town). There was a bike and a scooter parked a couple of cars down so we walked over to have a look.

A well-dressed gentleman had exited the restaurant when we pulled up and stood watching us as we walked over to the other two bikes. I looked quickly at the scoot, then walked over to the bike, a Buell 1125. The well-dressed gentleman comes over and says to Erik, “She’s not interested in the scooter, eh? Likes the big bikes.” I laughed and said I’ve only seen a couple of Buells in person and wanted a good look, and then asked if it was his bike. “Oh no, the scooter is mine.” It was an Aprilia 150. Very sweet looking scoot. I then asked who owns the Buell (because of course I wanted to sit on it), thinking it belonged to a friend of his who was inside the restaurant, but he said he just parked next to it. Silly me, it never occurred to me that two bikes next to each other wouldn’t be together. Erik and I are always together!

As the restaurant was packed, we stood outside gabbing. He showed me the lack of underseat storage on the Aprilia Mojito (the pet carrier was really shallow), but he was really happy with it. It has kind of weird front look to it, what with the headlight sorta stuck on as an afterthought, but I was liking it. He told me that his wife won’t let him get a motorcycle, to which I laughed and said, “Yeah, a 150cc scoot that can do 70mph on 10 inchers is a lot safer.” He looked at me, thought for a moment, and then I quickly added, “I won’t say anything to her.” He told me I was nuts for riding in the winter and for riding over the Bourne Bridge on the Buddy in the rain.

He also thought that the DRZ was Erik’s. “Oh no, they’re both her bikes,” was his wise reply.

Dinner good. We rode over to Standard Liquors to show Jim and Christian the bike. I got a double thumbs up from Christian, who thought it might have been a KTM. There’s that reference again!

Gearing up for a wonderful weekend of 70F days!

One Response

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  1. Rolando Peñate said, on 2010/03/19 at 2:56 pm

    Aw man do I miss Bob & Timmy’s!

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