I have a bad habit. Actually I have several which my mother can list in alphabetical order for you, but there's one that I would like to talk about. I am currently the Queen of Unrealistic Expectations. I will build something up in my head to be so wonderfully fabulous, that not even Willy Wonka or the Great Wizard of Oz or Her Royal Oprahness could fulfill my plans.
This year I put forth an assload of effort into NOT being that person. Everytime my brain would get all "IMMA GONNA PET AN ALLIGATOR!" or "I CAN SPEND FOUR HOURS SHOPPING AND GET GIFTS FOR SEVENTY TWO PEOPLE!", I would make myself go sit quietly in the corner at work and stare at spreadsheets.
And you know what? It worked. Apparently it isn't very hard to trick my brain. No one that knows me would be very surprised to hear this information.
So...We packed up some clean underwear and got the hell outta town. As I've mentioned before, The Man works night shift, so we left on a Friday at the crack of noon. Because falling asleep while driving me around on a Harley can lead to uncomfortable roadrash. Our first stop? Kentucky. Yes, we made it one whole state away.
My favorite picture of Kentucky.
There's a place in Kentucky called Land Between the Lakes. The scenery is beautiful, the road is idyllic, and there is an Elk and Bison reserve. Now since The Man is a hunter/gatherer/Ted Nugent fan, this was ideal. I could sit back and take beautiful pictures that National Geographic would swoon over, and he could stand at a fence and imagine shooting things. Wins for everyone.
Bison are kind of stand-offish.
After this was taken we headed of to the Elk Reserve to partake more of nature's beasts. Antlers are a priority for The Man. As we enter the Elk Area (Arena? Habitat? Hood?), we aew greeted by a large gate and a sign saying there is a charge for driving though the Elk Reserve. Fine, whatever. Just bring on the large mammals. As we approach the gate we see a second sign. "No motorcycles."
So, I guess Kentucky is kind of an asshole, what with the profiling and whatnot. But it was still purdy.
So while I told The Man over and over that the brochure said nothing about cars being required, we loaded back up and got the hell out of Kentucky. We decided to make our way to Somewheresville, Tennessee and get a room. It really didn't matter where, we just wanted to get out of Kentucky and closer to something fun. A few more hours of riding brought us to Jackson, Tennessee. It seemed like a good place to stop for the night, get a good dinner and prepare a game plan for the next day. We stopped at a well known chain motel, parked near the front door and went inside to hand over some money in exchange for a key to a hopefully clean room that didn't smell like a retirement village.
Now, everyone has done this. You walk in and are greeted by someone dressed as though they are impersonating an airline stewardess. You list your requirents for a room (single, king bed, smoking, first floor) and hand over the money. In return you get a plastic key card which will not work until the fourth time you try it, and a lecture on what additional charges you *may* incur. Total time for the process is what? Four minutes? Five, tops? We did all this, and returned to move the bike and take our bags inside. That's when we noticed it. Some asshat had stolen his helmet! Now lest you not be familiar with the motorcycle laws in the great state of Tennessee, let me inform you. Approved helmets are required for all motorcycle drivers and passengers.
After searching several times and taking to the airline stewardess, I mean front desk co-assistant manager Tammilou (who was entirely unhelpful), we resigned ourselves to walking to dinner and trying to figure out what to do over a couple of plates of barbeque. (I think much better when there's food present, don't you?)
Long story short, we called the police and got a weird sort of almost permission for The Man to ride to the Harley shop the next morning helmetless.
New helmet purchased with vacation monies. Thanks to Bumpus Harley in Jackson for commiserating and making me giggle while you called the thieves Motherfuckers.
I'm gonna leave off here, becuase this post has gone on way too long. Chalk up Day One of vacation to the thieves and assholes. Tomorrow will be better, I promise.