Here I am at the apex of my trip. Looking forward to unloading the bike and seeing the countryside. The woods are full of Harleys and every other kind of motorcycle. But always Harleys. Gray haired men in leather trying to capture some version of their dreams. We always smile (you can't stop smiling sometimes) and wave at each other, wishing each other "bon chance" as we go out to mix with the cages (cars) on the hiways. Most of the states I've ridden in lately have not had helmet laws. I am not so foolish as to ride without one. My kids had to wear helmets when riding their big wheels, anything with wheels. My son wishes that I would ride with a full helmet (I know I should) but I just can't do it. Part of riding is the sensory overload of sights and smells that I just don't get in a full helmet. Part of nature I could do without are the bugs that hit me right in that unprotected space between my visor and my goggles, between the eyebrows. I see the bugs coming at my windshield and arc up over the top, directly at my face. I know where it will hit before it makes contact. It does no good to move my head, the bug just adjusts to the new target.
Here is the view to which I arose this morning. Like Meg Ryan said in "French Kiss", "Beautiful, just beautiful".