Archive for February, 2012

Norton Commando Transformer!

Nice fun way to begin a Saturday! 😉

Evil evil drugs…a little advice when crossing Canadian borders!

I learned my lesson this past summer when traveling to Canada with a friend and at the border crossing we were asked, “do you have any prescription drugs”, to which we both answered “yes”. Well then came the query of how they were packaged. The border patrol was actually very nice, as he informed us without proper documentation we were subject to a $10,000 fine. GASP!!

Upon arrival home, I found this site with all the info in black and white!

* Pack all medications in their original, labelled containers;
* Do not combine medications into a single container;
* Pack an extra supply of medication in case you are away for longer than expected; and
* Carry a copy of the original prescription and ensure that both the generic and trade names of the medication are included in case of loss or theft.

Well, I found nothing regarding any sort of fine, and maybe this was simply the amount needed to put this border guard’s child into college. Either way, next time I’ll be properly prepared and informed.

Most information you need regarding travel in Canada can be found at Canada Welcomes You.

Salute to Bessie Stringfield–African American Female Motorcyclist rides into history

Bessie Stringfield was a true enigma while being female and African American, she championed the sport of motorcycling during tumultuous times.

Known as the Motorcycle Queen of Miami, Bessie Stringfield started riding when she was 16. She was the first African-American woman to travel cross-country solo, and she did it at age 19 in 1929, riding a 1928 Indian Scout. Bessie traveled through all of the lower 48 states during the ’30s and ’40s at a time when the country was rife with prejudice and hatred. She later rode in Europe, Brazil, and Haiti and during World War II she served as one of the few motorcycle despatch riders for the United States military.

Bessie began her journey in Kingston, Jamaica in 1911 where she was born. She immigrated to the US with family but was orphaned in Boston, MA at age 5. There after she was raised by an Irish woman who wanted to remain anonymous. Her Irish mother provided Bessie with nearly anything she wanted and when she reached high school, she wanted a motorcycle, even though “good girls didn’t ride motorcycles”.

She was 16 when she climbed aboard her first bike, a 1928 Indian Scout. With no prior knowledge of how to operate the controls, Bessie proved to be a natural rider drawing courage from two things: Her Catholic faith in Jesus Christ, whom she called “The Man Upstairs,” and the values she learned from her adoptive mother, who insisted that the Man Upstairs provided her the skills.

She was know to say, “when I get on the motorcycle I put the Man Upstairs on the front. I’m very happy on two wheels.” At 19, she began tossing a penny over a map and riding to wherever it landed. Bessie covered the 48 lower states. Using her natural skills and can-do attitude, she did hill climbing and trick riding in carnival stunt shows. But it was her faith that got her through many nights.

Being black in a time where there was so much racial distress made the nights difficult. Many places would not allow her to stay. Her strong faith got her through those nights finding either other African Americans to put her up or by laying her jacket over her handlebars as a pillow and resting her feet on the rear fender of her motorcycle and calling it a night at a local gas station.

Bessie’s relationships were also filled with turmoil. She was married and divorced six times. She lost three children and gave up trying after those. Her last husband, Arthur Stringfield asked her to keep his name, even after her divorce since she had made it famous. She did just that!

Over the years Bessie owned 27 Harley Davidsons, saying, “To me, a Harley is the only motorcycle ever made.”

Bessie died in 1993 at age 82 after complications from an enlarged heart, it almost seems ironic.

She was inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2002. The American Motorcyclist Association bestows the “Superior Achievement by a Female Motorcyclist” award in her honor.

The Pace that Thrills…a little flat track racing for a friday!

“A woman shouldn’t have angles, she should only have curves”…this is such a sexist film it’s humorous, but I have to admit, I did enjoy the motorcycling sequences especially the flat track racing. The entire film is found on YouTube. I have only watched part one, but have full intentions of seeing it in its entirety. I’ll post a full blown critique when I’ve seen it all.

Happy Cupid Day!