I’ve finally gotten to the point where the cold doesn’t stand in the way of riding the scooter. As long as the road is reasonably clear of snow and ice I’m good to go. This morning the thermometer was pointing to 5F at sunrise. With no wind and clear skies it almost felt warm.
So I’m good with the cold. The Vespa — not so much. It doesn’t want to idle well below 10F. Have to keep some throttle on or it will stall. Time to do some mechanical investigation I guess. But that minor irritation aside, I was off for a morning of appointments and meetings.
First stop of the morning was at my chiropractor. She’s working on some pinched nerves in my neck. Like any good adult male, I wait until things get bad before seeking help. Even though I know ignoring a problem long enough will make it go away, I still keep trying that technique out.
I cheated on my regular chiropractor and tried out a new one just down the street from my house. Support the local businesses and all. He was nice, but he was a neck cracker. Saw him three times and each time I thought he was going to break my neck. Always felt better afterwards but my god, I couldn’t stand the completely vulnerable feeling and that loud and sudden cracking.
No thank you. I’m a wuss. So I returned to my regular chiropractor. She uses a much gentler technique. Takes a bit longer but I’ve not once felt she was going to kill me.
I used to think chiropractors were quacks. When I finally went to one years ago out of desperation after seeing a medical doctor for months, I found almost immediate relief from relentless pain. It returned quickly but some weeks of continued adjustments slowly made the relief permanent.
I’m going to gripe a bit. Ignore what I say. I just can’t help myself in the face of what seems like a case of bureaucratic idiocy.
Had a meeting on campus with my old boss to talk about Penn State Ag Science magazine. When I was employed I could park in a multitude of great spaces. Now that I’m retired and no longer have a parking permit I’m relegated to visitor status. Penn State “upgraded” it’s parking gates in the on campus garages and to protect the safety of motorcycle riders banned them. I guess the gates are too stupid to not try and kill the rider entering and exiting.
Or something like that.
Anyways, they must have forgotten about us motorcycle riding visitors. A call to the Parking Office this morning about where I can park and was directed to the far reaches of outer campus where there was a little payment kiosk. Luckily there was one space to park — the little room left from someone straddling two spaces.
Nothing screams old age and first world problem like moaning about parking. I was fully prepared to write an open letter to Penn State about their inane parking solution for motorcycles and scooters. Wondering aloud why they just don’t let us park anywhere for free — especially in winter when there are probably all of four idiots riding.
But I quickly grew tired of parking. And my lazy ass could use a walk.
It was cold and the wind howled across the open landscape as I made my way into campus. Kept my helmet on for protection. Reminded me of crossing Parking Lot 80 from East Halls — then at the edge of campus. Same windswept landscape and feeling of crossing an unfriendly wilderness. But I was 17 years old then and too stupid to pay attention to the cold. Or much of anything really.
Easily made the trek to the meeting. Got a free lunch. Shared a few opinions and then was on my way to my next meeting.
Next stop — Innovation Park and the new home for “my team.” A dozen people on the digital education team I led before retirement moved to a new office suite last week. A plan that was underway before I retired. Great space and environment with open access to a variety of work pods and spaces. Kind of wished I was still around.
Stopped in to help make sense of a messy project I dumped on them. Nice to help out.
On my way home at lunch time. Temperature was around 15F. Perfect for testing the Termoscud on the freeway at higher speeds. I had read that the maximum speed you can ride without the thing flapping around was 55mph. I can attest the thing was solid at 75mph. And I was nice and warm to boot.
I’m kind of loving the apron. Looks weird. A standout badge of honor. When you ride in winter you can get away with all sorts of strangeness. Other riders marvel that you’re out. Everyone else just things you’re nuts.
If you have a Vespa GTS (or some other scooter), use the link below to get one for yourself.
With the apron, it’s a nice place to be on a cold morning Vespa ride.