Friday, May 25, 2012


This is going to be hard for me to write about and I’ve been putting it off for almost a month now and I’m at a point where I simply MUST do it.  It’s a good news/bad news type of thing.
The end of April my Step Mom went in for a simple surgery.  This simple procedure should have taken about an hour, ended up taking 4 hours because of a discovery of cancer and a life changing diagnosis.  I won’t go into deep detail, simply because it’s not my story to tell. 
She is now looking at chemo, pills, radiation, scans, and multiple doctors’ visits.  Both her and my Dad had planned on being our babysitters while we took our trip to Alaska. 

As you might have figured out they will be fighting a big battle and I have opted to stay behind and fight with them.  This Alaska trip is only possible for a small window. 

Yes I am sad I’m not going.  Yes I am disappointed.   I found a quote from Lena Horn that made me stop and remember a few things about life;  It's not the load that breaks you down; it's the way you carry it.  

Since I have made this decision I haven’t regretted it.  Not one bit and not for one second. 
Both my Dad and Step Mom will need help with this journey and battle that we are about to fight and in the beginning they will need all the support they can get. 

So the bad news is that I am not going to Alaska. 

The good news is that her prognosis looks good and her doctor is optimistic that she will win this fight.  The other bit of good news is that I have persuaded Ed to go.  This has been his baby from the get go and he has dreamed, ate, slept this trip.  Initially he said “Nope. No way.  I’m staying too.”  I had to spend lots and lots and LOTS of time persuading him that he needs this trip.  He needs to go. 

So while I won’t be his co-rider and I won’t get to have this adventure he will be there and I have told him to keep us all up to date on his trip.

Her chemo begins next week and we have high hopes she takes to it well and I ask all of you to send your prayers, positive thoughts, good will, and blessings our way.  This is not my 1st fight with cancer and a loved one, but I hope it's my last.

So friends I plan to help carry this load, and help be a strong back to those I love.  I will be a good daughter and help carry the burden of this fight.  I will also be a good wife and send my husband on the adventure of his dreams.  And I will keep the words of Helen Keller in my mind; "Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow." 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The return from the Darkside

Ed here,

Sorry it has been some time since I have made a post.  There has been a lot of things going on at our household.  Every weekend has been tied up solid. 

I have done a ton of things to the bike, but unfortunately I did not take photos so I cannot write a tutorial.  My new friend and I installed the Darkside tires on the Wing, they were on for about 250-300 miles then removed.  

The Darkside set up just was not for me.  The rear tire gripped so firmly that the front tire seemed to always be searching for a track when riding on any paved surface with a defect.  This caused the handlebars to wobble slightly.  Having a loaded trailer seemed to amplify the wobble.  I was not willing to put up with the wobbling for a ride that will be well over 9000 miles, so I installed a set of new E3 tires on the Wing and it is back to normal. 

When I removed the Taxi tire from the rear, here is what I saw:

The tire was rubbing against the front section of the rear tire.  It also was rubbing the top of the rear fender.  It actually wore a hole in the front section of the rear fender.  There were times when I was riding that I would smell a slight whiff of burning plastic, but I could never isolate it and thought it must have been a passing car or something.  It was me!!

I'm glad this was corrected before leaving for Alaska.  The Darkside was an interesting experiment.  I'm glad I tried it, but it simply was not for me.

The other things that were done to the bike were as follows:
  • New rear rotor installed
  • Greased all splines with Molly paste
  • Inspected the U joint
  • Replaced the U joint boot (it had a hole in it)
  • Re-torqued the swing arm
  • Checked the wheel bearings
  • Replaced the air shock boot
  • New brake pads all around
  • Repaired some wiring
  • Replaced the rear wheel dampeners, they were totally shot 
The only thing left to do on the bike is to change the oil which I will be done the day before departure.

Talk to you soon,