Sunshine & Sta-Bil

Mild temperatures, bare trees, blue skies, and light traffic
make for a rare November treat.
November can be a dark, drizzly, dreary  month. Summer is long gone, winter hasn't fully arrived yet, and the best part of Autumn ended weeks ago. It's a 'tween period that offers little to recommend it, especially if warmth and sunshine are vital to one's activities. But the rarity of nice days in November is exactly what makes them so precious.
November rides are a decades-old tradition for me, and they serve two purposes. First, it's simply very enjoyable to get out on the bike when the November sun makes a welcome appearance and the temperature rises to a decent level. A person doesn't have to ride far to enjoy the respite from cloudy days and gloomy mixtures of rain and snow.  A ride of only twenty miles is enough to remind us why we ride; the sound, the feel, the joy of it all. This past Sunday was such a day; 55-degrees and beautiful blue skies, hardly a cloud in sight. Such a November day begs to be taken advantage of.
And besides the simple fun of the ride there are other benefits of riding in November - there is less traffic, better vision due to less roadside foliage and harvested field crops, fewer deer to worry about, and no insects. And for me there is the annual rite of adding gasoline stabilizer to the tank full of gas, and running the bike long enough so that the stabilizer makes it through the entire system - keeping the gas and injectors clean and clear for the next ride. The best way to ensure an adequate distribution of the fuel stabilizer is to take a ride.  It gives me a feeling of purpose and importance knowing that I can tell anyone I meet that I'm not simply wasting a Sunday afternoon, I'm doing something necessary by following well established standards of preventive maintenance on my mechanical equipment. And everyone involved in any manner of skilled trades understands the need to protect your equipment.
Riding opportunities will become severely limited in the coming months, though even in mid-winter there are days when the ice melts off the roads, allowing for short excursions - again, for the mechanical equivalent of 'for medicinal purposes only'.

A few photos from last summer:

National Motorcycle Museum, Anamosa, Iowa
The Corn Palace in South Dakota


Antique Archeology / American Pickers, Iowa
Franklin Grove, IL