Saturday, August 12, 2017

Musings on a Four Skunk Day

I’m taking baby steps now that the scooter is back.  Okay, baby rides, to be honest.  It’s going to take me a little while to get my confidence back and to trust it to make a round trip without worrying me.  And, my riding skills have gotten a tad bit rusty during the hiatus when it was in the shop, so I’m trying to stay on high alert all the time, not that I shouldn’t always ride in that mode, but I prefer to relax a little when there isn’t anybody on my tail or waiting on a perpendicular street to dash out in front of me or somebody coming from the opposite direction ready to turn as I’m approaching an intersection.

I went out this morning just for the hell of it, before the rain that’s promised for this afternoon comes along and ruins the fun.  As I rode north on Main St. (The kind of Main Street that stays Main Street in name through a bunch of municipalities.) I realized that I needed to make a particular stop to visit the colorful gazebo where I often went to inaugurate a summer vacation and then to put it to bed before going back to school.  It’s in a park full of swings and other kiddie things so I hesitate going there with a camera in my hand lest I be thought a major creep, but I was lucky this morning to find it deserted so I could get my gazebo shot.  I could have cheated and just included one from a past visit, but I wanted it to be fresh.

 In this gazebo at a nearby park I often heralded the start of a summer vacation from school, and just as often revisited it before another academic year was set to begin.  I like my little traditions that have some kind of ineffable meaning to me.

 As I rode along after that, I was most pleased to feel the introspective mood that I often felt while scootering in the past coming back to me.  Various thoughts passed through my noggin as I scootered about, some of them about future blog posts I might write.  Unfortunately when I think about things like that the thoughts tend to evaporate before I can make note of them in some form or another.  On the bright side, though, it’s sufficiently pleasant to just have them in the first place. 

 Not far from the gazebo I feel like I'm sitting on top of the world with a view of the hollow below in the distance.

 Being able to entertain myself with my own thoughts (and subesquent questionable actions) has always been an ability I’ve treasured for most of my life.  I remember being of preschool age with a bucket of water, a handful of wooden clothespins, a number of pebbles and as many ants as I could find, and delighting in playing “war at sea” with ants floating on clothespin ships and going overboard as pebble bombs fell from overhead.  Yep, I was very good at keeping myself amused as the scar on my left index finger bears silent witness to from the time I gashed it while playing with my uncle’s rusty fishing knife and hitting my finger so hard with the blade when it slipped from carving the notch into an arrow I was trying to make from a long splinter of wood that I remember seeing my bone on the inside of the deep cut.  Lucky for me, I remembered being taken for stitches and a horrible tetanus shot some years before after I’d fallen down the stairs and cut my forehead beside my eye, so I gauzed up the awful cut and kept my hand in my pocket for the next week lest the adults find out what I’d done and take me for another of those bothersome needles.  But, as usual, I digress.

 Although I'm smiling here with that bandage beside my eye, the day before I was a screaming writhing mess while not only getting stitches but a big juicy tetanus shot for extra measure.

 Part of the reason that having my scooter in the shop for three months was so frightening was that I’d reached a point where I’d visited the garage a number of times to see it apart in what appeared to be hundreds of scattered pieces and I began to believe that the mechanic wasn’t putting it back together because he couldn’t.  Now that I’m riding again, I’m more amazed with every jaunt that it’s not only running, but running beautifully for the first time in a long time.  When he’d talked about boring the cylinder I was genuinely scared that it would never run again, and when I saw with my very own eyes my precious Piaggio eviscerated on the floor of the shop, I was even more convinced that eventually I was going to get the call to tell me that there was nothing that could be done to salvage it.  For now, I’m back in a good place, and hope and pray I’ll be able to stay here for a very long time to come.

Oh, as for the title of this post...  I passed four dead skunks on the road today in different places and in various stages of decomposition. It definitely wasn’t a good day for skunks to be trying to cross roads!

 Sorry, no skunk pictures.  If I'd thought I'd be safe stopping to get one, I would have.


kz1000st said...

Have you been reading Steve Williams again? This is highly introspective and deep in content. I'm just glad to see you rolling again. I'm betting this recent intervention will make the next 20,000 miles a breeze.

Joe said...

I love reading Steve, but I have to be in the right frame of mind to visit precisely because his posts make me think and I want to savor the thoughts rather than being distracted by "real life" as I am far too often.

Don't hold your breath too fast nor deep, though. I now have an oil drip that appears overnight. She'll need to go back to the little shop of horrors again.


kz1000st said...

Don't fret a drip too much. Both of my scooters require some cardboard under them for the occasional drip. It's the nature of the beast. Only the Honda Rebels in my garage are oil tight.