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As we are ripping through the summer, working on the house, the bike, and our valuable friendships, my attention to the Orange has been lacking. I apologize for that. Let me see, where was I?

OK! Here is a recap. As of this date in about two months on our new bike Deborah and I have 7700 miles and lots of new friends and experiences to show for it.

Our first excursion took us to Las Vegas in June for an anniversary party. Leslie and Brett hosted family and friends at the MGM Grand and other venues to celebrate their first anniversary. If we have to do this every year I will have to consider going on a twelve step program. Hey! I said it was Vegas! We had a great time, and Deborah’s girls seemed pleased with her transition to Moto Mamma extraordinaire. I know I am! After a few days in Sin City we headed north to Great Falls, MT to visit grandson Lucian and family.

We re-routed our trip north through Provo, UT to avoid the 30 degree F and snow which was falling in the mountains. My co-pilot and I were treated to forty degree weather with rain which was certainly a test of my new riding partner’s commitment to motosport.

We huddled, with a half-dozen other riders, at a truckstop in southern Idaho. The radar showed the storm moving rapidly away from us, so we drank coffee and warmed up for and hour or so before hitting the road again. We camped (at the Super 8!) in Idaho Falls where we enjoyed a fine meal and some great microbrews before hitting the sack. The next morning we swooped through the Montana Rockies to Malmstrom AFB where we were installed in a glorious two room suite that was only minutes from Deborah’s daughters place.

I have to say the base was one of the friendliest places I have visited lately. Forget all this noise you hear about millennials. These young Airmen and women were a delight to encounter. Proud, courteous, and competent, they reinforced my sagging belief in the future of my country. The mission of the command there is to be prepared to launch a significant part of the US nuclear deterrent if so ordered by the president. I am happy to report that this onerous and awesome responsibility seems to be in sane and competent hands- at least at this level!

After four days adjacent to the Great Missouri River we departed. Destination Spokane, Washington. We covered just shy of five hundred miles and rolled into Spokane in early afternoon. I had promised not to push my wife any further than that in a day so I asked her if she wanted to lay up for the evening. Her reply was it is too early, so we headed out for Kennewick, Washington. The Columbia Basin was smokin that day with afternoon temps near tripple digits. We pulled into a working man’s motel where we showered and luxuriated in the AC prior to hitting the Safeway store for some vittles.

The next morning we enjoyed coffee and yogurt before setting out for the house. By lunch time we were back in our own AO having just completed our first major trip (3000 miles!) together. We rested that night and in the morning set to preparing the motorcycle, our gear, and ourselves for our next adventure, a trip to the Wallowas to attend kyle and Jackie’s wedding.

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