Monday, April 30, 2012

After the Storms

Yes, I rode to work today.

Saturday was a day of storms. Some areas around St. Louis had hail the size of bricks. A tent like enclosure at a bar near the baseball stadium couldn't withstand the winds and collapsed. One person was killed, others were injured. Yesterday there was on again, off again rain. There was rain in the forecast for today, but I rode both to and from work on dry roads.

The rains came during the mid-day.

At lunchtime I took this photo of the Richard Serra sculpture. (Click here to learn about him) This installation is not well thought of here in St. Louis. I must admit my first impression was not favorable. I've come to appreciate this work, especially on rainy days like today.

By the late afternoon the sun was playing hide and seek. It was mostly out, but hid when I took a picture of my Symba.

I took the windscreen off this weekend. One of the clips holding the screen to the handlebars broke. With it being spring I decided to just take the screen off and see how I like it.
  • 64F/18C and overcast for the ride to work.
  • 72F/22C with clouds, but lots of sun for the ride home.

Friday, April 27, 2012

False Alarm

Yes, I rode to work today.

It was wedding day at the Courts. This is quite the event. Introverts are best to stay away. Today's Wedding day  was more exciting than most. It seems someone tripped the fire alarm.

Which caused  the building to be evacuated.

All the departments have a certain area to gather. This way all the supervisor's can count heads and make sure everyone is accounted for.

This is the second time we've evacuated the building this year. We are getting good at it. Neither was a drill, both were false alarms.

It occurred to me today if there was a fire. All my gear would be left in the building. Oh well, I knew there was a reason for all the extra gear I own. I could get someone to drive me home, get my extra gear, then get a ride back Downtown and collect my Symba. It pays to think ahead. Can you hear me laughing?

  • 46F/8C and cloudy for the ride to work.
  • 55F/13C with a few rain drops for the ride home.

Thursday, April 26, 2012


Yes, I rode to work today.

I rode straight home tonight. Heather and I are going out for dinner. We are going to restaurant we have both been wanting to try, but just haven't. I suspect if not for this I would have taken the long way home tonight. Once again we are having resort weather--the kind of weather you usually have to go someplace else to enjoy.

My custom is to park Billie, get the door open and push her into her parking area. I usually leave my helmet on while I do this, but it was so nice tonight I decided to take off the helmet before I began my routine. I had removed my helmet and set it on the seat when a butterfly landed on my shoulder. I had my Finepix XP around my neck. I slowly reached for it, but the butterfly flew off. "Oh well," I thought to myself and went in to open the garage door.

When I came out I just happened to notice the butterfly was back and was perched on the dumpster.

This time I was able to get a picture.

It even let me get a little closer before it flew off once again.

I took my helmet and gloves inside and came back out to push Billie into the garage, but my eye again caught the butterfly. This time the butterfly was in the bush on the other side of the alley.

Carefully, I drew close.

I was hoping it would open it wings and it finally did.

It even turned to give me even a better view.

I took a dozen, or so, photos of the butterfly resting on the bush. I probably would have taken more, but once more it flew off.

As I was heading to go back to putting away the Symba, I heard a voice, "Can I help you? Do you need something? The woman who lives in the house behind the bush was now peeking out from between her garage and the bush the butterfly had fled. I explained to her what I was doing and even showed her a picture of the butterfly on the camera screen. She hadn't recognized me at first and told me she couldn't figure out why I was just standing there. It was nice to be shooting with a digital camera. I could show her the evidence. Actually, I'm sure no evidence was actually needed once she knew who I was.
  • 67F/19C and fair for the ride to work.
  • 77F/25C with just enough clouds for the Weather Service to call it partly cloudy for the ride home.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Yes, I rode to work today.

Some days the commute is made up of one challenge after another. Most days it just is what it is, a mixture of drama and joy.  And, then there are days like today. Today both the ride in and the ride after work were exceptionally smooth. All the lights seem to be green. Everyone behaved at the four way stops. It was sweet indeed.

I did notice this wee drama.

I wonder when they noticed they were missing this little jacket. I wonder if they came back for it.

There were lots of people enjoying Citygarden today.

After work there was drama in the sky.
  • 63F/17C and a little cloudy for the ride to work.
  • 89F/32C and a sky full of clouds and light for the ride home.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I Love My Dentist

Yes, I rode to work today.

But, first I went to the Dentist.

I love my Dentist. After the head injury doing the dentist thing was very difficult for me and for the dentist. I was basically fired by a couple of dentists. I ended up going to one that would anesthetize me, but that was expensive and didn't fit in with my income. The problem was, I had some uncontrollable ticks, jerks and spasms. I knew Dr. Nouri from the coffee shop I used to go to. And, when I had a bridge came loose I talked to her about it, and made arrangements to see her.

It is clear she has worked at making her office as tranquil as can be. Her staff has always been kind to me. It has worked out very well. I am very grateful that Life brought her to me and keeps her in my life. She is a bright soul and a well-meaning heart.

It was early afternoon by the time I rode to work and the weather was fabulous! I wasn't the only one who thought so.

The parking area was pretty full. I've seen as many as thirteen bikes and scooters stuffed in this area, but it has been a while. This is pretty much the crew now.

After work as I was walking to the parking area I spied a guy on a scooter doing the photo thing. I hope he did better than I did. This one turned out a little blurry.

I did get some shots of him that were in focus, but all of those just look like he is sitting on his scooter, or maybe texting.

  • 71F/22C and abundant sunshine for the ride to work.
  • 77F/25C and wonderful clouds for the ride home.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Dumb Phone

Yes, I rode to work today.

There are bicycle racks in the motorcycle parking area. This morning one of the women who regularly rides was locking up her bicycle when I pulled in. She said, "I guess I was making my own windchill today." It seems the weather app on her phone didn't update and she left the house thinking it was 51F/11C instead of 39F/4C. When I saw her after work she was much happier with the temperature. She told me when it comes to the weather she isn't going to trust her phone ever again.

Today was cloudy with abundant sunshine. Nice.

  • 39F/4C and clear for the ride to work.
  • 63F/17C with big white fluffy clouds for the ride home.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Puffed Up About The Weather

Yes, I rode to work today.

The question of the day seemed to be, "Where did the nice weather go?" I heard it at work. I saw it on Facebook. As it didn't rain enough during my commutes to much more than spot my visor I'm not one of those complaining. That said, I understand where folks are coming from.

Even this robin perched on top of one of the steel panels of Serra's Twain installation was puffed up about the weather today.

Citygarden was abandoned. There was no one wanting to run through the sprinklers today.

The good news is the forecasters are talking of a nice weekend weather wise. I hope your weekend is nice all wise.
  • 58F/14C and overcast for the ride to work.
  • 50F/10C and overcast for the ride home.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Even More

Yes, I rode to work today.

I think there were even more bikes and scooters out today than yesterday.

I looked for Martha, but didn't see her.

Can you see the Vespa?

  • 57F/14C and lots of sun shining through the clouds for the ride to work.
  • 78F/26C and sunny for the ride home.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Lots of Waves

Yes, I rode to work today.

Lots of bikes, scooters, and trikes out today.  Lots of waves from every kind of rider. If this weather keeps up, I bet there will be lots of people thinking about moving to two wheels.
  • 50F/10C, calm with a few clouds, but plenty of sunshine for the ride to work.
  • 74F/23C with even fewer clouds and not much more wind for the ride home.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

It Would Have Been So Boring

Yes, I rode to work today.

And, I rode home.

I rode past Busch Stadium. St. Louis is hosting Cincinnati tonight. Go Cards!

Then out Chouteau Ave.

Onto Manchester Ave. and into the Grove Neighborhood.

On the far west side of the Grove are these two beauties. They sit waiting. They have seen better days, and I hope they see better days. There are so many wonderful beautiful old buildings here in St. Louis and too many of them are just waiting just like these two.

As I near Maplewood traffic picks up. Or, perhaps because the traffic lights again become more frequent, it simply backs up.

Dirty windscreen, oh well.

I needed to do some banking. My bank has a branch in a Walmart. This branch is open seven days a week and until 7pm Monday through Friday. I like that. Tonight I parked by the cart return near the door. I had a visitor. I told him he was all wet. I may have offended him, because he didn't stick around long. I barely got a picture of him before he flew off.

One of my neighbors just bought a car from this dealership. This dealership and the dealership where I bought my car are owned by the same people. She got a Volvo. I got a Yaris. Can you guess which one of us is the attorney?

A little longer ride than usual and a slightly different route. I'm so glad I wasn't driving. It would have been so boring.
  • 50F/10C with a few clouds and no wind for the ride to work.
  • 69F/21C with a few more clouds for the ride home.

Monday, April 16, 2012

They Aren't Yellow

Yes, I rode to work today.

It was definitely breezy this morning with gust up to 30knots, but I'm not complaining. My friend Chris at Everyday Riding commented to me he might need take his Ural to work today. It seems it was snowing in the Twin Cities today. We certainly didn't have that kind of weather here today. At lunchtime I was thinking of him and snow. When I think of late snows I think of snowballs. I had no snow but I did see these in Citygarden:

I know they aren't white, but they are round and they aren't yellow :)   I don't think they'd hurt much even if I could hit him in the face with one.

Since it was just 60F/15C at lunchtime, it surprised me to see kids playing in the sprinklers.

  • 56F/13C overcast and breezy for the ride to work this morning.
  • 67F/19C with a few clouds, but lots of sunshine and no snow for the ride home.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Opening Day

Yes, I rode to work today.

The first home game of the season for the Cardinal's Baseball team is a very big deal here in St. Louis. Last year they won the World Series and there was every reason to expect lots of people Downtown today. And, there were a lot of folks, but....
It rained.

Folks congregated anywhere there was an overhang.

It rained enough to delay the game until late in the afternoon, which was good news for me.

If the rain hadn't delayed the game I would have been facing much more traffic than normal.

And, the cars would have been filled with baseball fans who may have been drinking beer all afternoon. I was glad to have the game still very much in progress at ride home time.

Even though it rained much of the day, it didn't rain during my ride to work or my ride home.

Here's to a wonderful weekend!
  • 54F/12C and overcast for the ride to work.
  • 52F/11C and overcast for the ride home.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Spyders and Wasps, Oh My!

Yes, I rode to work today.

As I was walking into the Courthouse this morning one of the deputies said, "Sure feels better out here today than yesterday." Yesterday it was 35F/2C and today it was 37F/3C. Maybe he is very sensitive. I must admit I didn't feel much difference. It was less windy, perhaps that made a difference he was noticing.

Yesterday I saw Ruckuses or is it Rucki? Today at lunch I saw this beast.

There was a time I thought I might like to own a Spyder. Heather and I even test rode one. I didn't mind the ride, but it just didn't seem to make sense. We both liked the Ural much better. It had personality. That said, at this time, neither a Spyder nor a Ural is in our plans.

Also, at lunchtime I saw some of the crew charged with keeping the streets clean.
There is lots going on Downtown this weekend. Tomorrow is the Cardinals Home Opener, the NRA is in town, there is a marathon, and playoff hockey.
These little guys are having to work overtime.

After work I stopped by the grocery store to buy some odds and ends.
Yesterday it was Rucki, today it was Spyders and Wasps, oh my!
  • 37F/3C and clear for the ride to work this morning.
  • 63F/17C and clouding over for the ride home.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

More Proof

Yes, I rode to work today.

I saw two Ruckuses today. One I got a picture of and one I didn't.

I was eating lunch when this red Ruckus pulled up. Heather, formerly known on this blog as Goldilocks, has always  liked the look of the Ruckus. I've always liked the looks of the Big Ruckus. I've even thought I might like to own a Big Ruckus one day.

The other Ruckus was black. I saw it after work and lucky for him I did. In the time I've been riding only  twice has a vehicle pulled out in front of me in such a way to scare me. Neither time was it a car. Both times it has been someone riding a scooter. Tonight it was this Ruckus. Fortunately, tonight I knew I could change lanes and I was able to avoid him, but it was way too close. It definitely got my heart rate up. Oh well, more proof I'm invisible when riding, even other scooter riders don't seem able to see me.

As to the change of name for Heather. Heather is a very private person and when I started my other blog I asked her what she would like me to call her. She said, "Heather." When I started this blog, being inspired by some other blogger's pet name for there beloved, I began calling Heather Goldilocks. It made sense to me because she is blond. The other night she was reading one of the posts on this blog where I referred to her as Goldilocks. "Why did you start calling me Goldilocks," she asked me. I told her what I've told you dear reader and asked her if it bothered her. "Well," she said, "Goldilocks was kind of hard to please, sort of high maintenance. Are you sure you don't think I'm high maintenance?" I assured her I didn't, but I'm not sure she was convinced.

And, yes, Heather did read the above paragraph and laughed. She is happy to be Heather. No more Goldilocks.

  • 37F/3C and clear for the ride to work.
  • 56F/13C and not a cloud in the sky for the ride home.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Not So This Year

Yes, I rode to work today.

This morning one of the regulars at the cafe warned me that winter was returning. The forecast is for a  low of 35F/2C tonight with a high tomorrow of 59F/15C. That doesn't sound much like winter to me. Actually, it sounds like Spring. Here in St. Louis it seems we went from a mild winter directly to Summer. I guess to at least one person in St. Louis stepping back into Spring seems like the onslaught of Winter.

Last Spring it was so dry we didn't have many wildflowers. Not so this year.
And, I'm glad.

  • 45F/7C and a few clouds for the ride to work.
  • 61F/16C lots of sun for the ride home.

Monday, April 9, 2012


Yes, I rode to work today.

It is amazing what a difference four days can make. The sun is much higher in the sky then when I rode to work last Wednesday. Then I was leaving in dawn's most early light, now the tinted goggles aren't at all premature. Of course, this morning was as clear as a bell. I suspect this made everything look even more vivid and sharp adding to my sense of the change. Now the questions is: Would I have noticed if I was commuting by car? The answer: I would like to think I would have, but I don't ever remember doing so when I was driving to work. I read somewhere the difference between driving a car and riding a motorcycle/scooter is akin to the difference between watching TV or being in the show. This morning I was definitely part of what was going on around me.

At lunchtime I saw this guy. I wonder what the story is. The bike and bags looked new. It just looked curious.

  • 49F/9C and clear for the ride to work.
  • 71F/22C and just enough clouds so I couldn't call it clear for the ride home.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

We'll See

Yes, I rode to work today.

Today was overcast and the temperatures felt more like April.

I'm taking a couple of days of vacation and won't be riding to work the next couple days. Tomorrow the Symba goes to the mechanic. We're going to see if we can figure out why she screeched last Sunday. I have some thoughts, but we'll see what the expert finds.

I wish both my Christian and Jewish friends a good Holiday. May Life bless you all.

  • 57F/14C and overcast with haze for the ride to work.
  • 67F/19C and overcast for the ride home.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

I Will Admit

Yes, I rode to work today.

It was another wonderful weather day here. There was talk of storms developing in the afternoon, but if any did they chose to develop where I wasn't.

The Symba supposedly has a 1.08 gallon (US) tank, but I'm skeptical. The most I've ever put in the tank, and I have reason to believe I was running on fumes by the time I got to a gas station, was .85 gallons (US). The gauge is made up of a number of lights. When it gets really low the last light begins to blink. I try to always fill up before that last light starts blinking.

Tonight I filled up the Symba.
On that amount of gasoline I can expect to go approximately 85mi/135km. I will admit the prospect of great gas mileage was why I started riding a scooter, but it is the experience of riding the scooter that keeps me riding a scooter.

  • 64F/18C and sort of cloudy for the ride to work.
  • 80F/27C and becoming rather cloudy for the ride home.

Monday, April 2, 2012

As I Predicted

Yes, I rode to work today.

Another historic high temperature today. It got up to 89F/32C.

As I predicted last Friday, the sprinklers in Citygarden were on and kids were running through them.

And, although I didn't predict it, the Flamingo was playing the piano.

Happily the Symba ran just fine today. There was no repeat of the screeching sound it made yesterday. She goes in to see her favorite mechanic Thursday. We will see.

68F/20C and clear for the ride to work.
88F/31C and clear for the ride home.