By Bruce Mike

April was a tough month weatherwise. That’s why being gone for the last week of it was wonderful. When we left there was about a foot of snow in our front yard. By the time we got back it was gone and things were starting to turn green. What a difference a week can make.

My wife and I road-tripped down to New Orleans to visit my daughter and her boyfriend. We’ve done plenty of bike trips but this was our first multi-day trip in a four-wheeled vehicle. It was way more fun than I thought it would be. We rented a car that turned into a giant SUV when we picked it up. They didn’t have any cars left. The only cost increase was in fuel and the vehicle was really comfortable. It had air conditioned seats which I found to be a much better accessory than heated seats.

We took our time getting there and back, stopped at a lot of brown signs and did a bunch of tourist stuff. We saw a great band in Memphis and discovered Graceland is ridiculously overpriced. We took a shortcut in Mississippi that made the four-wheel-drive in our ginormous SUV necessary. We spread mud from Mississippi to Iowa. We drove 2800 miles and it was really fun.

I hadn’t been to New Orleans post Katrina and wow has it changed. I’ve always loved the culture there but it seems more alive now than it was when I was there before the storm. I realize there are less people living in the city but those that are, seem really vibrant and optimistic. Part of the reason it felt that way may be because my daughter loves it and is really excited about living there.

The food is amazing and the overall vibe is laid back and relaxed. It looked like the average age was mid thirties and it felt really young. It’s a very diverse and friendly population. I’m looking forward to more visits. It’s a pretty exciting place.

While this trip had no motorcycle riding in it, I did start planning a bike trip in my head on the way home. We came back through Arkansas and took the long way through the Ozarks. Now that it has stopped snowing and the temperatures are a little warmer, it’s time to spend more time on the bike than in a car. It’s only a ten hour ride to the Ozarks so that would be a pretty easy four day trip. There were lots of twisties and nice asphalt. Pretty much all I look for in a nice road.


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