You Just Had to See These “Special Riders”

So I had to take a long trip yesterday on business that didn’t involve my bike and despite the weather, I still saw a fair amount of guys out riding. Bundled up, facemasks, you know the look.

And then I started seeing some special riders.

Guy on a Goldwing in a head-to-boot orange jumpsuit. Just a straight up orange jumpsuit with no other adornments. Think of the one they give you when you end up in jail for the night. He was even rocking orange gloves and a black beanie and looked about as strange as anyone could possibly look in that circumstance. I’m not sure if he’s just made bail, escaped, or was trying to make a statement.

I was perplexed.

Another hundred miles down the road and I saw Santa Claus on an older ‘glide. Full outfit – white gloves, red velvet suit, black boots, big beard and he even had the hat on under the beanie. Kids were freaking out on the highway, I assure you.

It just so happened that he ended up pulling into the gas station that I was fueling up in and this guy was a mess. He stayed in character the whole time, filled up his tank and dodged my questions about his bike and everything else. He had literally become Santa with the exception that he smoked Marlboros (although I noticed they were lights, not cowboy killers). He was asking me what I wanted for Christmas, telling me he was taking the weekend off to blow off a little steam since he had to work next weekend and everything was going fine with him, the missus, and the elves.

After about four minutes, I started to think the dude had lost his cabbage.

Flash forward a couple hours, and the next place I stopped had a really old couple on another Goldwing and they looked to be a very long eighty years old. Full leather, full helmets, towing a little trailer (what is it about Goldwing owners and little trailers?) and they were going to see their kids in Florida for the week. They’d left Tennessee that morning and were going to stay the night in Gainesville, Florida before they finished the drive to Winter Park the next day. The best thing? He had only started riding when he turned 70.

When it comes to bikers, I meet a lot of characters on the road. Cool, quirky, mean, nasty, fun, funny, and usually just “normal”. Yesterday took the cake, though. I ran into some crazy folks at Sturgis – but I expected that – we’re all together and a few of us are bound to be a little weird. On the road, though? Usually you see one nutcase out of 100.

I guess the odds were in my favor.

Get your resolutions ready next week, though, because I’m going to go through mine for the year and see how I actually scored… and get ready for 2017!

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