Well hello sports fans! I think that’s the way the Great Santini addresses his family in the Pat Conroy book by that name. Robert Duval plays a great character in the movie . . . but that’s not the subject of this post. Some how I have gotten off my day count so I am correcting it. This is for day eleven but written on day twelve. Michael and I were so tired last night from the distance covered he didn’t even do his crunches and push-ups. He had me doing them but not as consistently and not as many. I keep telling him that I’m an old man and staying on the bike is enough exercise for me on any given day! And yesterday was a humdinger. We woke early having traveled late to Caliente, UT. If you have any Spanish at all you know how to say this town’s name. However, if you are from this thriving metropolis you pronounce it Cali-any. Anyway, we left Cali-any headed across the rest of Neveda. We went through towns with names like Hiko, Modena, Warm Springs and numerous others. The highlight of the day in Nevada was coming into Tonopah to eat some health food at McDonalds. As we were eating, kids from the local high school started coming in. Mike and I noticed that their school mascot name was the “Muckers!” I kid you not! It evidently has something to do with mining but Mike and I decided that the name was subject to some serious abuse and went on to abuse it some ourselves. We had to take it to the parking lot we were laughing so hard. We were afraid some local Mucker might overhear our crass humor and choose to “muck us up!” Anyway we left Tonaopah, home of the Mighty Muckers and rode through Coaldale and Basalt before coming into California and our 13th state. I forgot to mention Neveda as our 12th one the day before. Somewhere over the last two days we have also logged our 3000th mile on this trip- pretty cool! As we rode in CA we came to a road which we add to our list as one of the prettiest in America, hwy 120 toward the town of Lee-Vining and Yosemite. It passed through Inyo State Park which was beautiful and also subject to some seriously bad jokes- “So, what’s in-yo state park?”- things like that. Hey, when you’re talking on headsets all day you have to do something to lighten the day! Highway 120 led into Yosemite and I’ll apologize to all the Yosemite fans. We took this one on the run due to the time of day. We still got some beautiful pictures but Michael said that he could easily spend two weeks there, which, in itself is an understatement. Snow was still on the peaks and some of the valleys. Run-off made the streams fast and roaring. These places truly defy description and my supply of superlatives is running low as a result. After the park I made the stupid decision to make it to Merced, CA. This ended up being about 80 miles too far for me. I was worn out and mean by the time I got here to the Comfort Inn (Mike and I had camped out for the last three days and figured it was time for some soft beds, warm showers and good rest). Our total ride today was 516 miles. We didn’t think yesterday’s haul was as big as some of our initial ground-eating rides but it turned-out to be right close—which was too much! Today we’ll hopefully be able to spend a little time at the San Jose BMW Motorcycle shop getting oil changed and a few things looked at before riding on to Monterey. We’ll let you know how that works out.
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