Friday, March 23, 2012


You see that smile? After six motorcycle lessons, I made it to Alaska and back again, 10,230 miles.
Please, pretty please, go to my new site,, for how to start the best chapter of your life. (Which can begin today. Right now, in fact.)
Thank you and keep a look out for my book, The Mom Who Took Off On Her Motorcycle (Kent & Cordell). You can find details about it here, too.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Life is Either a Daring Adventure or Nothing

Now that I’m off the motorcycle, it’s time I start sharing what I learned on the motorcycle. The lesson of today’s post is using my sense of humor.
Here’s how it works – there are people I’ve been dealing with on my job who have really tested my nerves. Every time I thought of them, I wanted to go into a soundproof room and scream. I didn’t know how to deal with them in a way to make my life fun! I assumed I had to grit my teeth and bare it. But then I realized that if I used humor when I thought of them, I could make myself far happier. I decided to give those challenging people nicknames so that when I thought of them, I could laugh.
So, the guy named Patrick who’s been driving me up the wall has become Hat-trick. Why? Because he’s always pulling problems for me out of his hat. And the bossy woman I work with who reminds me of Meryl Streep’s character in “The Devil Wears Prada” is now called Madame Chang because of her dictatorial style.
I shared this idea with my friend, Kate. She’s been indecisive about breaking up with her boyfriend, whose last name is Reeve. She said that she’s nicknamed him Believe. Why? Because she wants to believe that there’s a better man for her out there. And my friend, Sam, who has a procrastinating son named Joe has nicknamed him -- you guessed it -- Slow.
I know that we all struggle with how to deal with irritating people. If you do try this, let me know how it works. I’m realizing that the only person I can change is myself. If I’m creative and use humor, then I’m a lot happier!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Wildlife Crossing

That was a hoot -- seeing a WILDLIFE CROSSING sign just before we were leaving Brooklyn on the Belt Parkway. Ha ha. And all those smells that greeted me while riding from Pennsylvania to Long Island: curry, lemon, vomit (near Coney Island), breakfast eggs and tar. Welcome home!
I couldn't write for the past two nights and, alas, I am reportiung that this is my final blog on the trip. We were in Cambridge, Ohio, a "used-to-be" kind of town, very frayed and old where the guy at the cafe on Main Street(that is a photo of the couches and chairs in between the book store and the cafe)said that all the people he knows "are on the dole...there is no work...and nothing to do..." There was some kind of fair while we were there so oddly enough, the dumpy inn we stayed at was completely booked. But all the coal and steel companies and even a Champion battery company have closed up and moved on. The town felt sad and deserted.
The next day we went to our friends, Harriet and Mark Levin, who are the parents of fallen solder, Michael Levin. Michael was with Shlomie during the Israell-Hezbollah War of 2006. They are amazing, wonderful, heartbreakingly special people and it seemed fitting that we would spend our last night of our trip with them.
We crossed over our last grated bridge for a while (not far from Sheepshead Bay) and made it through tons of traffic, trucks, honking, tailgating and road construction to reach the Starbucks in Manorville. Which is where I first met that woman who rode up to Alaska and inspired me to do the same.
Home. Yea! Laundry, first, since you all want to know what was the first thing Jonny did when we got home, and putting away our motorcycle gear until -- well, until...who knows?
Thank you all, dear readers, for keeping up with our adventures!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Leaving Kansas City Behind

I asked the woman, Kerrie, who cut my hair, how long she had been at the hair salon (which was in the mall where Ari spends maybe not 24/7 of his life but at least 12/7).
She told me she had moved from a salon in Manhattan.
Wow, I thought to myself, this time I have lucked out and got myself a Manhattan haircutter in Kansas! How lucky can one travelin gal be?
I asked why she moved to Kansas.
"Well, I was getting bored in Manhattan seeing the same people day in and day out," she said.
"Really?" I said. "I never saw the same people in Manhattan when I lived there."
"And also, my boyfriend lives in Lawrence so I wanted to move to be with him."
"How did you meet a guy in Lawrence when you were working in Manhattan?" I asked.
"It's not that far away!" she said.
"From Lawrence to New York is pretty far to me," I said.
"Manhattan, Kansas!" she corrected me. "Not Manhattan, NY!"
So, there you have it: two Kansas City's, two Manhattans, and one confused New Yorker! But at least she gave me a great haircut.
And Ari in that photo looks like a Greek statue he once saw in a London Museum -- can't remember the name.
We had a great time with him and then left early this morning for a place weirdly named Effingham. We bought dinner at Wal-Mart (gooey cheddar cheese and doughy white bread -- i was hoping the two negatives would cancel each other out) and are hoping that tomorrow is less windy.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Kansas City: Who Knew?

Kansas City: who knew? Who knew it is such a beautiful city? I never did. I think I am talking about Kansas City, Missouri, the part of the city that has a Plaza area where there are fountains and beautiful buildings and great restaurants.
And seeing Ari is a blast. He is Mall mega-man, full of facts about the Dead Sea products he is selling and how to basically sell anything. He is having fun and that's great to see. He is here with his amiga Katya, before she moves to Seattle.
Jonny took Ari to one of his favorite places -- a camping store -- where he helped him pick out a tent and sleeping bag for Ari's upcoming road trip.
We had dinner tonight in a Brazilian restaurant and tomorrow Ari is taking Jonny to the Harley Factory (ssshh, don't tell our BMWs that are waiting loyally for us in the hotel parking lot) while I go to one of my favorite places: the library!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Sioux is Pronounced Sue, THere are Two Cities Named Kansas And...

...other strange quirks of the Midwest. For instance, why would they give two cities that are right next to each other the same name? I have to investigate whether the state of Kansas or the state of Missouri chose the name Kansas City first. And then there is Sioux Falls and Sioux City. I have to admit I didn't give Sioux Falls much of a chance, but we were parked in this dumpy section of town and our room had an undisturbed view of a...gas station.
I was also so excited to go to a supermarket around the corner because I wanted a salad. (Oh for a food that is green that is not an M&M!) They had a 7-layer salad but below the shredded orange cheese, it was hard to discern what exactly were those 6 other layers. In a 7-layer cake, you are pretty sure of the contents. But this time...Well, I stuck to the Muenster cheese and whole wheat bread.
We got up at 5 a.m. to beat the thunderstorms. It was gloomy and dark outside and the flag that was hanging against the gas station wall was fluttering and waving in the wind. We were feeling so down about having to ride in the wind and rain again.
"Oy," Jonny said as he got on the bike.
I nodded.
"And only you can really understand how much that 'Oy' means," he said.
But lo and behold, the wind wasn't as bad as we feared and the rain had already come and gone...So we zipped and zoomed -- the speed limit is 70 or 75 mph! -- and it was sometimes hard to actually meet it. Imagine that, having to work hard to get to the speed limit. I think police must have fun trying to chase people going 10 miles too fast.
Anyway, we stopped a few times, nothing interesting to really report, except for talking to a guy who was retiring next year at age 55. (Show-off!)
The photos are basically what we saw, flat lands and that one picture is what I took as I lay, collapsed on the lawn of a rest stop, staring up in the leaves.
Now we wait to see Ari in Kansas City, Kansas, having rode through South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri (in less than 8 hours "with stops," as Jonny wants y'all to know) and, this must be Kansas!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Something to be said for being Flat

You get to ride and ride...and not have to deal with hills, vertigo, sudden drops, curves, swerves and turns. Just flat road stretching through the flat South Dakota fields chock-full with motorcyclists. Remember how I wrote that I used to give that cool "guy like me" wave when I passed a fellow motorcyclist? Well, now there are so many headed for Sturgis that I don't even blink an eye. Mostly guys, hairy, bald, bad, paunchy, tattoed, wearing vest and heavy belt buckles and from now on, whenever guys tease me or other women about shopping and our love of accessories I will point out these Harleys decked out with so many leather chotchkehs hanging from under the rear wheel and strings and flame-looking metals around the mirros and little stuffed animals...
And we ran into a gang of Hells Angels from California at one stop...I kept my eyes lowered as I passed them. They looked and sounded s-c-a-r-y...
Now we are in Sioux Falls, having crossed what we thought should have been the end of a state only to discover that we are still in South Dakota, never-ending and green...Tomorrow we have a long ride to Kansas City where I will get my hair cut and see Ari, who has not cut his hair in a year!