Saturday, August 10, 2013

Saturday Scooting

Soon, when I'm back in the classroom, Saturdays are going to be a precious commodity in terms of getting in the longer scooter rides.  Okay, "longer" is a relative thing, of course.  I never take what most riders would consider a long ride, but the ones that keep me out of the house for a few hours are plenty long for me.

I noticed a few days ago after having ridden in a light rain that the bike had gotten rather dirty so before taking off this morning I decided that a good washing was in order.  The "BV" in Piaggio's designation of my scooter as "BV250" stands for "Beverly," the model name, and for a few seconds I enjoyed the thought of "giving Beverly a bath," which got me to wondering why they'd give a scooter a woman's name in the first place.  With the parent company, Vespa, and its classic "Stella" moniker I suppose it shouldn't be too surprising, but it is a curiosity.  All I could find by way of explanation was this forum page with goofballs suggesting reasons for the name.

After the suds and hose ordeal was complete I towel dried the scooter and came back inside to let the thin film of moisture that remained evaporate.  When I got back outside all ready to suit up, (i.e., put on the helmet), and take off, a little visitor was about to take the pillion position.  I'd have let me come along for the ride, but upon closer inspection I noticed that one of his big, back jumping legs was missing so I let him crawl onto a finger and gently set him down in the grass.  With a bit of a blessing and a modicum of luck, when I go out to the deck this evening for a little unwinding time before bed I just might hear his tiny voice among the nighttime chorus.

Since I went for a ride on Route 29 yesterday, Or was it the day before?  I don't remember but that's one of the things I love most about summer vacation - forgetting what day it is, I decided to take Route 92 today.  Like many of the places I scooter to, it's on the other side of the Susquehanna River.  I can get there in a number of different ways and I chose the longer and most scenic roads today.  One of the places at which I planned to stop for a picture is alongside a pond of which I've taken a number of good pictures through the years, particularly in the autumn when the nearby trees reflect colorfully on the usually crystal clear surface of the water.  What a disappointment to find it scum covered!  I hear those who supposedly know about these things talk on occasion about a pond "working" every few years and if that's what this one is doing I can only hope that whatever job it's doing will be finished soon.

It's rather pathetic that for as many photography books as I own and have read, when I'm in the field it all goes out the window.  Worse, one of the simplest parts of a good photograph that doesn't involve formulae and mathematics is the simple composition and I even blow that.  What was supposed to have been one of those idyllic and pastoral Steve Williams roadside scenes turned out to be this monstrosity of a tree growing out of the scooter.  Nope, I didn't see it until the picture was in the computer and much too late to fix by taking two simple steps to the left or right.

On Route 92 is this building and I've always wondered about it and its history...

Though a single car parked out front this morning suggested that in spite of its gargantuan size it might actually be a single family dwelling, it reminds me of a mental hospital out of some horror movie.  The kind that does electroconvulsive therapy on everybody whether they need it or not.  A creaky looking set of large gates blocking entrance from the road completes the picture of the property and grounds that I carry around in my head and imagination.

I stopped shortly after scootering past the "mansion" and turned myself around for the trip back to the house and tried again for that simple "scooter in nature" shot on the bank of the Susquehanna.  I like how the converging perspective lines of the horizontal elements suggest movement of the bike from left to right.  Or maybe I'm just reading too much into the picture for want of making some use of those aforementioned how to take photos books.

A final pensive moment, back on my own side of the river, actually only down the street and around the corner from where I hang my hat, and my ride is nearly complete.  I suppose it's good that I like it here and that I'm able to find a little joy in a ride wherever it takes me on a particular day.

Tomorrow I'll be on the road again for one final blessed week of relaxation before going back to the old grind.

I'm not sure when I'm back at work how regularly I'll check in here, but I want to hope and believe that I'm not going to take another of those long breaks from posting that I did last year.  I don't plan to, at least.


Doug said...


I can't speak to the meaning of the BV initials but giving Beverly a bath certainly sounds entertaining.

Piaggio scooters are part of the Piaggio group which makes everything from corporate jets to Vespa Scooters. Also Moto Guzzi and Aprila motorcycles, Gilera three wheelers, and Derbi scooters or bikes. Not sure which Derbi makes. Piaggio has been called "the Honda of Europe."

Deb said...

The first time I saw a BV250 it was parked at an Amish market out where I used to live in rural Ohio. I immediately began to lust after that scooter. I still think they are awesome. It is on my "list" of about 7 potentials in my plan for a bigger scoot.

Anyway, your photos are super just as they are. Nice post, very nice area to ride in right out your door!

I used to be a high school teacher so I know the pang of emotion as the summer winds down and the classroom beckons. Sort of dread, sort of exciting. I no longer teach so the dread part took over for me! LOL

Anyway, I enjoyed the journey along...

Paul said...

That's some lovely scenery there Joe. I am glad you are still riding. :)

SonjaM said...

Nothing can go wrong in a picture if there's a pretty scooter in it. Go on, you're doing well. It takes some effort to stop for a photo (especially when you have to unmount your steed, as you want to have it IN the picture...) but often it turns out to be worth it. Just my two cents ;-)