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This Year In New England


This year, in New England, we're having an unusually vibrant foliage season. At least that is how I perceive it, through the eyes of a rider - something relatively new for me. Unfortunately, this year is also colder than usual, making riding days somewhat rare. For a week prior to Halloween it was mostly cold and gloomy; from Halloween night it rained hard for two days. The driving rain relieved many trees of some of their brightest leaves, yet there remained a few. Today, I woke up and saw that the day is bright, dry and sunny; on its way into the mid 60s.

So I said "to hell with work, to hell with projects, to hell with the leaking carb and to hell with a low alternator output." I went riding. First a quick stop at a friend's garage to borrow a timing light. Set the timing and off I went - Concord, Lexington, Lincoln, Waltham - everywhere lush reds and vibrant yellows. The smell of fall leaves and pine needles; and the rebuilt carbs make the bike so much smoother and mellower... I rode in triumph through all the roads where I kept breaking down a few weeks ago. Full throttle, in second, on a snaking road through an oak alley. Just me and the SuperHawk. Then, the feeling of immense satisfaction in knowing that I took a 33 year old bike - half dead - and brought it back to life. To another life. The air was soft, the sun was warm, the light - pure.  I was beyond the reach of time - for, for all we know, this could have been 1964; I was beyond the reach of mundane reality. Transcendence was complete and thorough as I leaned into curves and downshifted into stops.

Now, in the evening, collecting my thoughts, I just wanted to say "Thank You!" to everyone on the VJMC mailing list. Without your help and advice this fall day would remain utterly under appreciated.

Michael Stoic
November 1997

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