Scoot Commute

Hey, where’d you get that jacket? That’s exactly what I need!

Posted in Daily Commute, Pleasure Ride, Suzuki DR-Z400SM (Elsa) by sbahn on 2010/10/28

Going to Work

I took Elsa (the DRZ400 SM) this morning because the weather was forecast to be in the mid-70s Fahrenheit…at the end of October! I figured I would take my old route along Dean Street as it’s been under major road works and I wanted to see the progress. It had gotten so bad that I won’t ride the scooter because my fillings came loose the last time I did that route.

I took Pine Street which is now running one way in the opposite direction. There are large arrows painted on the pavement indicating the direction as I’m sure folks are going in the wrong direction on it. Really, a couple of signs saying “New Traffic Pattern…Change in Direction” would help a boatload.

Anyway, I got to the YMCA and made a left. The street surface is all cut up so the work has made it almost to the end! The traffic was very backed up so I just sorta sat in line for a while. As I was moving up the line, a road worker wearing a hi-viz yellow vest with reflective stripes yells the title above to me. She walks over as the traffic is not going in any type of forward motion, and I tell her that it’s a motorcycle jacket with armour so it may be a bit of overkill for her work. She actually grabbed the fabric and rubbed it between her thumb and forefinger. Always stylin’ in my Olympia AST.

Once I got through the light at Crossroads, the street was paved! There is even cool bricking on Cahir Street that will hopefully help the idiots dropping off and picking up their high school spawn navigate the street. I don’t recall anything else very interesting on the way in, that is, until I pulled into campus.

Elsa on campus ... stupid car in my spot!

Elsa on campus ... stupid car in my spot!

The little red scooter with no license plate was in my usual scooter parking place. But I park the bigger bikes in a yellow striped out ‘no parking’ section. However, there was a freaking car parked in my spot. Those stripes mean something, dumbass.

Lunch Break

Because the weather was so fine, I had no meetings scheduled mid-day, and I had to be on campus late, I took a ride at lunchtime out on Douglas Avenue / Douglas Turnpike toward Massachusetts. I’ve given up on trying to find any dirt in this part of Rhode Island.


Ironmine Road, Harrisville, RI
Ironmine Road, Harrisville, RI
Nice gravel going to waste
Nice gravel going to waste
Ironstone Reservoir, Massachusetts
Ironstone Reservoir, Massachusetts
Moo cows
Moo cows

It was a leisurely ride back into Providence. I stopped for fuel as the odometer was reading 115 miles since the last fill-up. I calculated my mileage at almost 72 mpg! That rivals the scootah.

Wheelie Action

At the end of the day, I headed back toward home. There’s one street that usually has very few cars on it and very few areas where someone could do something stupid to cause me to have to brake suddenly or swerve. There’s an old factory/warehouse converted to overpriced apartments on one side and two active factories/warehouses on the other. So I thought to myself, let’s try this wheelie thing.

I had noticed on Sunday that Al kept getting lift when he would speed up suddenly as he was going really slow. I took the left onto Sprague Street and let the bike slow down. Then I pressed down on the handlebars, and as I twisted the throttle, I sorta let go and scootched back on the seat. It was a teeny, tiny little bit of air, but I actually did it! I did this a couple more times until I ran out of street, thinking of the Al method. I get it now.

Big accident on Elmwood Avenue so I took it easy. Morons sped up to pass me in the left lane (it’s two lanes in each direction even though this is a neighborhood!) but I didn’t let them in as they had to stop where the THREE fire trucks and two cop cars where straddling the roadway. I don’t know how they couldn’t see them up ahead, what with all the lights, sirens and hi-viz in the darkness of the evening. I’m really done with the jerk drivers.


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