Friday, June 21, 2013

What's In A Name?

The RoadQueen.  It's been sort of my handle/nickname since 2010 when I purchased my current motorcycle.

You see, I've always been a bit eccentric.  Just ask poor Guinness...

My first motorcycle, a 1979 Kawasaki 400 was complete piece of poo.  I worked on it trying to get/keep it running almost as much as I actually rode the thing.

Being that my friends all had much nicer bikes than I did, I attempted to dress it up a bit.  Some leather fringe here, a horse ornament on the chrome front fender...

It was eccentric, like me.  I liked that bike.  However, it was old, and the motor was worn out, and after cleaning and adjusting carburetors, jets, etc....bottom line, it was still a 1979 KZ400.  I was doing a lot of highway travel at the time, and my poor bike couldn't keep up with the pack at 70mph.

So in 2010, I upgraded!

No, it's not a Harley.  It's a Suzuki Boulevard C50T.  It's big.  It's squishy.  It's COMFY.  It can rock out 80mph All. Day. Long, son.  It's pretty.  But I still needed to make it 'mine'.  Thus the leather fringes on the handlebars AND the clutch and brake levers.  :D

I was still taking a bunch of good-natured ribbing from my friends who rode Harley's.  Road Kings, to be exact.  

Did I mention that I'm also a smart-ass?  I found these gems on Ebay, so I purchased and installed them on my front fender.

So, since the day I unveiled these beauties on the front fender of my Suzuki cruiser, I have been dubbed The RoadQueen.  

Yes, I'm still rocking out the RoadQueen fender emblems.  And yes, if they ever fall off, I'm buying new ones.  ;)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Just Ride It Out

Have you ever had one of 'those days', where everything you touch turns to shit in the palms of your hands, and you can't seem to do anything but piss people off unintentionally?  Of course you haven't, neither have I.


Today was my day.  It started out blissful upon waking up, but 20 minutes later things started to go wrong, and it all just went straight down the crapper from there.  Having been pent up by recent rainy weather and being a physically high-maintenance individual, I was reaching that last straw.

So, I decided to ride it out.

Work is good for me.  Body, mind and spirit.  As an added bonus, I got to tour a longer route than I normally take.

I haven't ridden on this street since I was a child:

Heading out, I had a stiff headwind blowing in my face.  I had to work extra hard to go the speed that I was pissed enough to want to go.  But it was good for me.

By the time I got to about this point, I wasn't so pissed/frustrated/hurt anymore:

Then I started to enjoy the view.  

Wouldn't it be something if more people took a time-out to go beat the crap out of themselves on rolling hills in a beautiful landscape when having a bad day, rather than lashing out at loved ones and use the bad day as an excuse to make it alright?

Honestly, who can stay in a bad mood when they're sweating, muscles burning, heart pounding, breathing heavily and looking at something like THIS?!:

Maybe our country's leaders should make some time for a bike ride daily.  It certainly quells my douche-like tendencies.  Food for thought.

Today's Ride:
Time:  34 minutes
Distance:  8 miles
Average Speed:  13.91 mph
Fastest Mile Time:  3 minutes 11 seconds

Not only did this ride put me in a better frame of mind overall, this ride is the best average speed I've been able to carry over a halfway decent distance.  I can't seem to break that 14 mph average, but by golly I'm getting closer.

~The RoadQueen

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Bicycles Rock

I may be a veteran motorcyclist, but I'm a fledgeling bicyclist.  I had no idea when I purchased my bike, how much I would enjoy moving under my own steam, faster than a walk or jog can accomplish.  

While my first love and greatest passion is Equestrian Sports, Bicycling is quickly becoming a close second.  

This is my first bike as an adult:

It's nothing fancy.  It's a Giant hybrid/commuter type of bike that I had outfitted with a stuff-carrying-bag on the front, and a water bottle holder, of course.  It's got fancy Shimano shifters that I never would have even dreamed could exist (especially as a kid on my Walmart 5-speed special whose shifters sometimes worked, and sometimes didn't) that shift with the simple click of a lever, a whole bunch of gears with three in the front and eight in the back, and those neat fat-butt handlebar pads to keep the palms of your hands comfortable.  (IKNOWRIGHT?!)  

Before you say it, yes, I know.  I know squat about bike parts terminology and I'm ok with that.  Besides, I like my made-up words better.

Let me tell you, I freaking LOVE this bike.  On this bike, I can go faster than a walk, but I'm forced to go slower than on a motorcycle.  My default setting is FAST, FASTER, FASTEST!  GO, GO, GO!  I'm working on that, trying to make myself slow down and enjoy the scenery...and my bike is perfect for that.

See what I mean?!  Look at all that scenery I would have missed if I had been going Mack 2 with my hair on fire, as usual.  These photos were taken on the Kokosing Gap trail near Central Ohio.  My friend Recumbent Conspiracy Theorist took me there last Saturday, and it was a gorgeous ride.

RCT, looking the picture of comfort.  I'm starting to seriously consider getting one of those recumbent contraptions.

I was so relaxed and aware of my surroundings, I was able to stop and smell the flowers for once.  Literally:

You know what else?  Wooden bridges are FUN to ride over on a bicycle.  As your wheels turn over the wooden boards, it makes a satisfying "thump-a-thump-a-bump" sound that for some reason really tickles my fancy.  There were a few small wooden bridges, but I immensely enjoyed these two big ones.  

The bridge below was on the Kokosing Gap trail near our starting point:

(I got to ride over this one TWICE!)

Then there was the Bridge of Dreams at our turnaround point.  The slanted boards and rubber mat don't give as much satisfaction, but fun nonetheless.

During one of my rest stops, I even noticed the pretty bark on this tree:

This ride was the longest I've ever been on at just a hair over 36 miles, lasting for 2 hours and 44 minutes.  For the first time I seriously considered how much fun a recumbent would be.  Everything's more fun when your ass isn't sore, amiright?!

~ The RoadQueen

Woman's Best Friend

I am so grateful for many things in my life.  One of the things I am grateful for, are my pets.  Especially my dogs. Hercules, the Boxer, and Jake, the Mini Schnauzer.

The cat, Jim, is an ok dude.  He's playful and friendly, but he can be needy and underfoot quite a bit.

  Not to mention he has a bathroom fetish, especially toilet paper.  I'm sure you can see where this is going...  He prefers it to be off the roll, and takes it upon himself to relieve the confined toilet paper of it's roll prison.  We have sort of a love/hate thing going on.

Jim and Hercules have a love/hate thing going on as well.  Hercules would love for Jim to hold still long enough for him to smell and possibly lick him.  Jim hates that shit and wants nothing to do with Hercules.  

My dogs are my favorite 'children' - besides my actual human child, of course.  Although technically, my Mini Schnauzer has seniority over Zach.  Jake is 12 years old, on his way to 13 this October while Zach just turned 11 this past April.  The worst part about owning and loving pets, is that all too soon they are senior citizens and cross that Rainbow Bridge.  

I consider them both to be 'my' dogs, but technically Hercules belongs to my son.  When his dad and I bought this dog, it was intended from the start to be my son's dog.  

Zach and Hercules - September 2009
Therefore, when we divorced in 2012, it was decided between the two of us that Hercules would reside wherever our son resides.  Since we have joint custody, the dog lives with Zach and his dad one week, then Zach and myself the next, so on, so forth, rinse and repeat.

This small detail seemed to make the transition between having one home to two much easier for Zach.  That one constant thing, his dog, gave him comfort and stability through getting used to "Mommy's House" and "Daddy's House".  I will ever be grateful that we made that decision for Zach.

I'm a firm believer that pets can be good for people.  They play, entertain, comfort and provide just enough antagonism to prove that they're not REALLY Angels sent from Above.  Their companionship has gotten me through some pretty low times.

Me and the "Old Man"
Knowing how amazing and caring domesticated animals can be, it floors me that some people can be so callous and cruel as to betray the trust that they put into humans and hurt, starve, or otherwise neglect their animals.  I just don't understand it.  

~The RoadQueen

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


This blog is purely for my own amusement, and to chronicle the tales and adventures of my life in a nice, neat, chronological order.  <-- That statement has only been used about a billion times...

This blog is going to contain all sorts of life changing events (to me).  Epic bicycle rides, adrenalin pumping trail riding by horseback, horse training, motorcycle riding, hiking, insightful ramblings and everything else that my gnat-sized attention span happens to land on long enough to write something about.

So...we'll see what happens.

A blurb about me:
I'm almost a year into my divorce at this point, and still trying to find out where I fit in the grand scheme of things, since I no longer fit where I was.  I'm active and fit, but my body type is deceiving.  I can go all day long, but I carry some extra weight.  I like to call it "Fit-Fat".  Working on that.

My 11 year old son is one of the funniest people I know.  We have a great time, and his soft little heart is huge.  I love watching the transition of him growing and maturing.  He is now at the stage in his life that he is 1/2 way between still being Mommy's little boy, and a young man.  Time sure flies.

I love animals.  If it's got fur, I'm a fan.  Not so much on insects, arachnids, snakes or lizards.

Anyway, I think that's enough for now, so I'll pinch this one off.  Thanks for reading!

~The RoadQueen

^^  That's Guinness.  You'll learn more about him as time goes on.^^

P.S. Oh, and I like pink.  Like, a lot.  :)