Some of you folks may be aware that back in the autumn, forum member RichH bought my 2010 Victory Cross Roads.
Although I loved "Doctor Pepper," I was using only a fraction of the machine's potential as a long-distance cruiser. RichH, I knew, would do better. It was a very happy transaction, and we have regularly corresponded ever since to discuss the bike and Rich's work to customize it to his liking.
A few months ago, Rich informed me of his intention to ride from his home on eastern Long Island to Daytona Bike Week. He has put a bunch of time and effort into planning the trip, and preparing both the motorcycle and himself for the effort.
I wrote to him on Saturday, February 28th, and asked how his preparations were coming along.
That night he wrote:
"The Doctor and I have completed the first leg of our trip. Because of the impending snow, we started the trip one day early. I was going to start tomorrow. We are at my daughter's home in PA.
"I can't tell you how good it felt to be riding Dr. Pepper again. It's been a while. It felt so good traveling at 80 to 85 mph just to keep up with traffic on the Jersey TPK.
"Monday, I plan to travel to Hillsville VA. To spend the night. I just hope that there isn't snow on the roads come Monday morning."
As it snowed in the northeast on Sunday, March 1, he made a smart choice to start his adventure early.
Today, March 2, I thought of my buddy often throughout the day, hoping he was staying safe.
This evening Rich wrote:
"Thank you Chris. Your prayers worked very well.
"The most exciting part of the trip was getting Dr. Pepper out of my daughter's garage and down to the street. The driveway is blacktop, pitched down to the road and was covered with ice. I had the engine running, in neutral and I had both feet down on the ice/pavement and skied the bike down to the road, dragging the front brake to control my speed. Boy was I happy to get that over with. The trip only got better after that.
"All the neighbors that were shoveling snow stopped what they were doing to watch the crazy biker riding in the snow.
"After I got a couple hours down the road, conditions improved and the ride was very nice.
"I traveled 460 mi in 8 hrs. and 15 minutes.
"Weather looks good for my departure in the morning and my arrival in Jacksonville in the pm."
As I felicitated him, I asked whether he would permit me to share his messages with you folks here on the Forum, and he gladly consented. So I'll post these notes from time to time, and maybe Rich himself will also include updates.