What's Been "H"appening 08/08/04
 
by Dick Scalpone, AGWA-Illinois Chapter H

Hi all,
Wasn't Sunday one gorgeous day.  Weather wise, it was perfect for us motorcyclist and outdoorsman.  The weatherman and the good Lord sure did us proud today.
The rough riders did meet at Mickey D's on this fine day.  Nothing but blue skies, with a clear crisp wind coming out of the north/northwest.  It just does not get any better than this.  What more could one ask for??
The rough riders who gather on this fine day were; major Dan Harris riding BEATLE BOMB, captain Kirk Huot riding RANGE RIDER, gentleman George Riebesehl riding SILVER STREAK, whispering Joe Mendoza riding PRANCER, dancing Dick Sieple riding BIG BERTHA, uncle Dave & Susie Q Glasgow riding GREEN MONSTER, roven Robert Sample riding OLD TIMER, fast Eddie Bowser riding SHOT GUN, trusty Bruce Hirsch riding BULLDOG, and yours truly riding HUMPTY-DUMPTY.  
This was a wild and wooly crew of rough riders and the entourage was rarin' to go.  I took the lead and trusty Bruce did the sweeping job.  So it's off we go, hi ho, hi ho, and away we go!!  The place for our fine selection of dining cuisine was "R-Place" in Morris, ILL.  Its location is route 47 and I-80 in north central Illinois.  The route chosen, was a real squirrelly one, with many twists and turns and curves and dipsy-dos.  After all, our ponies needed much exercise.  They were cooped up in their corrals all week long.  Their hoofs were ready to gallop way down yonder. 
In about 85 or so minutes our arrival was soon apparent.  Us rough riders parked our ponies in the corral under a great oak tree for some shaded comfort, while the rest of us fed our empty tummies.
We were seated, the coffee was poured and the chit chatting soon commenced.  Slurp the coffee and let the shenanigans begin.  Heehaw, socializing at its finest.  Yes siree, chapter H has some of the best kibitzers in the AGWA organization.  The vittles soon arrived and our hunger tantrum was very satisfied.  Believe it or not folks, our group's behavior was impeccable.  Everyone wore a "halo" on their head today.  By golly, the waitresses were even surprised.  No singing or dancing today.  Everyone was in control.  The best is yet to come.
Time's-a-wasten, it is time to roll, lets mount our ponies and do some mighty fine country road riding. 
Some of the rough riders had to depart for home to do some much needed chores, the remainder chose to accompany me for some heavy duty back road riding.  Those who attended were; captain Kirk, gentleman George, uncle Dave & Susie Q, roven Robert, fast Eddie, and this chapter rep.
Our destination took us south and west through some small towns.  We stayed on U.S. 6, through Seneca, Marseilles, passing through Ottawa and heading for "J.C. Whitney" auto and motorcycle parts warehouse were some of us made a few minor purchases.  After departing, our destination took us south on Illinois route 178 through the small town of Utica.  This town was a disaster.  About 3 months ago, a tornado passed through and just about destroyed everything in its path.  The Utica residents were totally devistated.  Everyone felt real bad for them.  Many Illinoisans along with the red cross, rendered their assistance and  along with many prayers and funds, this town will make a come back.  Folks, this town was heart wrenching.  All of us rough riders felt so sorry for these people.  Although we were not able to stop, our eyes told us the total story. 
Our route continued south on 178 to Matthiessen state park.  What a great place.  Hiking galore!!  How sweet it is!!  We demounted our ponies and parked them in the shaded corral by the big ole oak tree.  Now the adventure really begins.  I asked all "Who is strong enough to hike the trails with me"??  Only one taker.  Roven Robert joined me for a 7 mile hike.  The rest of the rough riders stayed back and chit chatted.  Roven Robert and I walked up and down a million stairs (so he says), through the trails of the back woods, down and over the bushes and tree stumps.  Changed our direction and headed down by the water stream, where we tip toed through the tulips and bounced off the logs and other stepping devices to fine our way back.  It is then, that we came upon, a few young people "skinny dipping" in the stream of fast flowing water.  Much to my dismay, what do you think roven Robert does, he drops he draws and gives them a "moon" shot.  How embarrassing.  I informed those skinny dippers that I did not know him.  Needless to say, our departure was fast and furious--like now!!
We eventually made it back, after our long and tedious walk, to the rest of the rough riders.  Worked up a great thirst, as we all continued to socialize for a few more moments.
Alas, it is time to depart and mount our ponies and head homeward bound.  I viewed the map, plotted our course and away we go, tally-ho!!  Our route took us out of the park and east on ILL 71.  This is one real squirrelly route.  It bends and twists every which way but lose.  Some of the turns are hair pin at 15 mph.  Up and down hill, traversing back and forth with a never ending trail of great adventure.  Our ponies were truly delighted.  Their hoofs gripped the pavement like bubble gum, due to no road kill.  The entire time we ran along the Illinois River.  Eventually traveling through the town of Ottawa.  I took an alternate route and continued north on 23 through several small towns.  We traveled through many a corn fields, where the farmers were hard at work.  Our arrival into DeKalb was our pivot point.  Does anyone care to guess were our next pit stop would be??  Give up??  Yep--you are right!!  Ice Cream--what else.  It is there that we spotted a D.Q.  Yummy, yummy my tummy is happy.  As we slurped and slobbered that creamy white stuff, the shenanigans continued in its finest form.   The huppen'n hollarin, and shucken 'n jiven does not get any better than this.  The characters of chapter H are absolutely the best.  These guys are fun to be with and ride with.  These guys are wise beyond their years, and great to be around.  They should be on the president's cabinet with there know how and intelligence level.  For example:  captain Kirk could easily be "Secretary of Defense", gentleman George a great "Chief of Staff", uncle Dave the "ministry of defense", Susie Q, none other than "National security advisor", roven Robert a great "Attorney General", fast Eddie would be earmarked for "Secretary of State", and me, well--I would just sit back and watch my executive council work diligently and make me look good.  The irony of the rough riders is nothing but fantastic.
All in all, we had a great time and in our travels, we managed to log on or about 195 miles for one great day.
So until next week folks, lets be especially careful out there when riding our two wheelers.

The unruly rep,
dick