April 22, 2017
Bike is Home for 2017 Riding Season
On April 12, Heritage H-D dropped off the bike.
It has been a cold April so far, so I've only ridden twice; to the debriefing of the group that went to HOT training the following Saturday (mine is the one on the left - the other bike belongs to another Officer that attended the training)
and to work on the 17th
Hopefully it warms up soon (today was in the low 40's) and riding to work will become a regular thing.
April 16, 2017
1st Day of HOT Training
They kept us pretty busy thru the Harley Officer Training (HOT).The Introduction to the training was held in an auditorium with all attendees.
This year's theme of the training was "No Boundaries". That was in reference to the boundaries that we, and our groups place on ourselves that can limit chapter growth, member retention and yes, even the riding and fun.
Sometimes I felt like I was back at high school changing classes every hour or so. The first class for everyone was Building Strong Foundations. Although these classes went on in several different rooms, each chapter was placed at one table. We were lucky and our Sponsoring Dealer attended training also, so we could all discuss what we wanted out of the training and preliminary planning for putting that in action
After the planning stages, the schedulers had broken up the Chapters by placing members in different classes. Somehow they knew that I was the one that am not comfortable with other people, so they managed to always place me in a class by myself (except one class on day two). Most of the other Chapter members got one other familiar person in their class.
My second class was Inspire thru Leadership where we were introduced the reason for HOG, what rules the Company institutes for HOG Chapters and ways that leaders handle challenges.
My 3rd class was a "Powerpack" or bonus class that we got to pick from and I chose Using Social Media. I learned a few things about posting picture do's/don't's and a few things to put into action for emails to new members.
My 4th class was Forging the Dealer-Chapter Relationship. We broke into groups and were asked to think as a sector of the Chapter - Sales, Engineer, Designer, Production/QA (this coincided with the 4 types of people that started the H-D brand/company). The groups were self-determined thru personality types and my group was "William - the Production/QA person who listened and didn't talk a lot. Each group was given an exercise and to share results with the entire class. Once again I became the organizer. My work experience with leading meetings was certainly coming in handy by keeping group members on task and leading them thru the different aspects that we were asked to consider.
That evening HOG hosted a dinner with entertainment. I was not originally planning to go as I was all peopled out, but decided to attend the dinner. The had screens set up where pictures taken thruout the day were presented on a slide show. Much to my surprise, my mug was captured.
While everyone else stayed for some of the entertainment (a cover band, alcohol and dancing), our dealer and I headed back to the hotel as neither of us drink (okay, she doesn't drink at all and I rarely drink), nor fully appreciate bashes with all kinds of strangers. After a full day, it was nice to curl up with the Kindle and just decompress.
Buffalo Side Trip
On the way to Harley Officer Training, we took a small side trip to a Buffalo Harley-Davidson dealer. They had an area that showcased some old bikes, which was the best thing about that shop.
April 07, 2017
3 more days of this person and her non-stop talking. the 8 hour drive out here was bad enough, but we also share a hotel room. The 8 hour drive will be a contest of my willing myself not to strangle her.
It will be a miracle if I'm still sane after this.
April 02, 2017
Patches and Pins
I am going to Harley Officer Training in Buffalo, NY soon. As an officer of our Chapter, I am expected to proudly represent my chapter - and let others know what chapter that is. Up until now, I have worn a leather vest with verious patches - 2A, 9-11 memorials, travels map, a Lady Rider and LOH Patch (national group). That vest is quite full (and I have lots of patches/pins that sit in a box).
I happen to have a HD denim vest given to me by a coworker who used to ride with her ex. She no longer had a use for it and gave it to me quite some time ago. I have never used it, but no am putting it to good use by placing Chapter as well as National patches on the back. Oh, and please notice that Rita was helping so had to photo bomb - at least her chest and legs :)
On the front are featured my officer patch and pin (on the left as you look at the picture), and on the other side are the chapter pin, the national LOH pin, and the national HOG pin for the current year.
1 day of driving there, 2 days of classes, then another day of driving back. My butt is going to be telling me all about the sitting I will be doing.
March 25, 2017
I've Been Busy as a HOG
Since summer of 2014, I have belonged to a HOG (Harley Owners Group) and their subgroup LOH (Ladies of Harley). I haven't participated much in their activities, but do attend the monthly meetings. I also helped man the tables for selling tickets in a fundraising endeavor in the spring of 2015. And I also participated in 1/2 of a ride that fall. I was going to visit a friend in central NY at the same time they were having a ride to extreme eastern NY so I tagged along and peeled off when they stopped in NY. I've also participated in the Internationale Female Ride Day. But that has been the extent of my participation in activities.
Late last fall, the LOH Officer announced that she was going to be submitting her name for consideration as the Assistant Director of our HOG chapter and asked for ladies who were interested in the LOH Officer position to let her know. A week or so later she emailed me asking if I was interested. I responded that with working two jobs I didn't feel I had the time to put into it, but if she couldn't find anyone else, that I would do it. She had served as LOH Officer for 2 years, done an extremely good and effective job at it, so deserved to look for a higher seat.
She did find someone else, so at the elections held in November, the Officers were elected without fanfare and that was that. Or so I thought.
So how the heck did this happen?
Well, In mid January The lady who had accepted the nomination as the LOH Officer found that her work schedule would not allow her to effectively perform her duties as LOH Officer so resigned her position. A call went out for all interested parties to contact the Director and the Officers would chose the candidate from amongst that pool. A week or so later, keeping in mind the troubles of finding a candidate last fall, I contacted the Assistant Director letting her know that IF no one else put their name in, I could do it. I reminded her that I had two jobs and didn't have a lot of free time on my hands so I didn't want my name thrown in if there were other interested parties.
Apparently, no one else volunteered so at the February HOG meeting, our first meeting since the elections, I was tentatively affirmed as LOH Officer - tentative because they wanted to make sure that everyone who attended the HOG meeting was aware of the vacated position. Two weeks later it was official.
Since then I have organized two LOH meetings; the February meeting (which was delayed a week because of a blizzard) was as presumptive LOH Officer, and March meeting as the affirmed Officer. At the March HOG meeting I had to give the report on our meeitng and upcoming events. I have attended a Monarchs Hockey game with the HOG chapter (on the left is our chapter Secretary and on the right is our Membership Officer).
And the biggest, most time consuming event so far, was organizing and running the LOH bake sale and raffle of which the proceeds benefited two charities. (I'm way back behind the white haired lady).
The first weekend of April is the HOG meeting, for which I have to give my report. The second weekend of April I have to attend Officer training in Buffalo, NY with 5 other chapter Officers. That will consist of two days of travel and two days of training. Then the April LOH Meeting is 4 days after we return, then in May is the International Female Ride Day plus the regular HOG and LOH meetings.
It's all busy and good. But what the hell did I get myself into? :O
And last - at the raffle / bake sale, I had to have my picture taken for the HOG Chapter website.
March 04, 2017
Getting Ready to Roll
for bike season. Last Sunday I conditioned my leathers. My chaps are fairly new so conditioning them don't make them visually different. My vest, although only perhaps 7-8 years old is very weather worn, and has lots of cracking, especially on the back. However, it has held its black color well and with all the patches and pins no one notices anyway.
My Jacket however is somewhere between 16 and 20 years old. It has seen a lot of rain, a lot of heavy, driving rain, a lot of cold, a lot of brutal sun, and even some hail (on 3 occasions that immediately come to mind). Added to that is it gets stuffed into saddlebags when I've gotten warm enough, so it actually bakes in there. It is made of very heavy leather; I had to buy a man's jacket to get that heavy of leather, so it has worn pretty well thru the years. However, it does turn from black to a brown by the end of the season. So, when I condition it, the change is quite noticeable.
Ready to roll! Except, that the brutal cold that wasn't very evident in February has made a March appearance (high of 15* today - with full sun), so I won't be using it very soon. Still, nice to know it is ready at a moment's notice.
January 22, 2017
Winter Storage Party 2017
My dealer had its Winter Storage Party yesterday so I got to visit the bike. This year she was on the ground row just inside the door between Service and the storage area so she was easy to find.
At the end of the party they pull tickets for door prizes. I was the first winner and got a drag Specialty sweatshirt. That is cool, I had no sweatshirts related to bikes. Now I can wear it instead of Iditarod sweatshirts to HOG meetings.
Speaking of HOG, only a couple of members were there this year and only one other LOH member attended. A lot of HOG members don't store their bike at the dealer, but I was surprised that several that are at the party every year chose another activity. After all, the big door prize is for a $400 gift certificate, so that is much coveted. However, there was also an outing scheduled for the Ice Castles up in Lincoln, NH so they all probably went to that event. Unfortunately the original date for that activity was scheduled for last weekend, the same evening as the Patriot's play-off game, so they moved the Ice Castle outing to yesterday.
It was good to see the bike and sit on her for a minute or two, plus get out and do something other than regular trips to the grocery store or Big Box Home Improvement stores (which I did do before the 2 hours I was at the WSP). Next month HOG & LOH meetings start back up after a 2 month hiatus so I have those to look forward to to pull me out of the house for a couple of hours a month.
December 17, 2016
Good Bye Until Spring
No, I'm not going to hibernate - although that doesn't sound like a bad idea as we have already had a morning low of -4, with the high at 13 (Friday). We've also had several snow storms, after which, it hasn't gotten warm enough to melt off. It is good bye to the bike; Friday my favored dealer came and picked up the bike to put it into nice warm storage. I needed the room as with pellets, car, snow blower and bike, the garage was pretty much as full as it could get. In the second picture, you can get an idea of how close to the wall I had to park the car in order to have room to open the door without hitting the bike.
I had arranged to have the bike picked up on Friday, but was not given a time. I needed to burn a vacation day anyway (use or lose), so that was no big deal. Bryan, a service tech, called me at 9 on Friday to see if he could pick it up that morning. By 9:43 he was ready to start loading it into the van (sorry for the picture hue - it was snowy, overcast and that side is in whatever shade there was so everything turned a bluish hue)
After he got it all secured and strapped in, he pulled out of the driveway at 9:46
This is the first time I've had this service, usually dropping it off myself. However, I needed some of the work done offered by the top tier storage package. That work is done at a discount and the package includes their picking it up and dropping it off in the spring.
At least I got some room in the garage.
Later that day I took the car into town to run some errands and charge up the battery and lube up all the moving parts - I hadn't driven it in a couple of weeks. I was able to park the car in the garage in the middle instead of to the side - you'll just have to imagine how that looks since I haven't taken a picture.
December 04, 2016
Of Bike and Snow
I have not ridden the bike since 10/16/16. Yesterday I was going to take it out for a quick spin to Henniker and back. That would accomplish a couple of things; fill the gas tank, get oil circulating thru the engine and clutch, and charge up the battery.
Naturally it started snowing as I pulled it out of the garage into the driveway. I decided that Mother Nature did not intend for me to ride so let the bike warm up and charge in the driveway then shut it down and backed it back into the garage.
If you look closely there are a couple of snow flakes on the seat. It was hard getting a picture since the engine had already warmed the seat up somewhat before I thought to get pictures.
Guess it is time to arrange for the dealer to come pick it up for winter storage :(