Days 36, 37

And so, the trek back north began. Unfortunately, as in most parts of this trip, I didn't have the luxury of time. Thus, I ended up doing about 1,200 miles in 2 days. Not impossible, but not a ride in the park either...each style of riding has its own challenges...especially when those challenges involve New Mexico? April?! So, leaving from Alamagordo was chilly, but once I hit the interstate, it was snowing! And it snowed or rained off and on all the way up to Cuba, NM...not quite what I was expecting in early April...but nonetheless, there I was, with all of my gear and layers on...heated jacket/gloves on full whack, and I wasn't even half way through the day. Needless to say, I took a well-deserved lunch and pressed on. But, I do have to admit on that ride up from Albuquerque to Cuba the desert really was beautiful all blanketed in snow. I stayed that night in Monticello with the BirdTricks crew and then the next day pressed on up to Boise. (and OF COURSE I had to stop at the In n Out burger in SLC...I haven't seen one of those places in ages, so just seeing the sign left me craving for a burger served animal style!) Thank God we ended up in Boise and that I have a friend with good eyes. The next day as I was lubing the chain for that day's ride, my buddy pointed out that my chain was broken...I didn't believe him at first...but sure enough, my chain was only hanging on by half a link! I definitely used up one of my 9 lives that day and don't even want to think what would have happened had we not caught this. Anyhow, since we were in Boise, I had remembered a buddy buying a bike there 5 years ago when I was on the circus and the particular dealer had given him great service and treated him well. So, I called up the same dealer (that's a customer service lesson for you business owners ;-) ) and sure enough, they had a chain and could throw it on in no time. What amazing folks at Big Twin of Boise (a former Ducati dealer). I got to talk to Henry (the guy is probably 3 times my age, and had great stories of riding Ducatis in southern Cali when he was stationed there in the Navy) and thanks to Kevin and Neal they got me back on the road and I was able to make it to Bend, OR that night, most of it before sunset. Once in Bend, I got to spend a day there visiting a dear friend who paints with coffee and beer (no, really, she does...and well) We had the time to take a tour of the Deschutes Brewery as well as visit a quilt show her sis had entered in...sounds boring, I know, but Bend having the most breweries per capita, this quilt show had free beer, so how could I say no? :-)Next up....the last day