Bessie Stringfield fought for civil rights and equality by doing what she loved despite the struggles and danger that came with riding motorcycles.
Visitor from Germany: MXRTW
Last week I got an email from a fellow named Max who’s traveling the world on his motorbike. He told me he was cruising down the California Coast and asked to visit the shop and I this week. I adore meeting other motorcyclists, people on long adventures, and readers… so of course I agreed! Yesterday he rolled up to the compound gate on his Honda Africa Twin and greeted me with a huge wave. The first thing he said, “I love riding in this country! It is so beautiful, all the people are so nice, and gasoline is so cheap!”
We traded stories from the road, he told me about where his travels have taken him so far, and where he’s headed. The guy has been on an amazing adventure indeed- he began his journey at the end of August 2013, traveling through over 20 countries, and ending in the USA for a six more months on the road.
He told me about his experiences in Japan, why he didn’t ride through China (they require tourguides! you learn something every day) and stories of awesome people he’s met. Max was brimming with excitement about all of it- and the joy was infectious indeed. When you meet someone so happy to be doing what they love, it reminds you why you’re doing whatever it is you’re doing… or maybe suggests you should be doing something else.
He landed in Tacoma in June and spent some time riding through the Pacific Northwest region that I consider my home, visiting some of my favorite camp grounds and National Parks.
Mount Ranier National Park, Washington.
Trillium Lake, Mt. Hood, Oregon.
Whitehorse Falls, Oregon.
Crater Lake & Wizard Island, Oregon.
As he made his way South, he followed hwy 1 and 101 as much as he could, keeping close to the Pacific Ocean and it’s beautiful views.
After chatting for hours (literally… four hours! it went by so fast) I asked if he wanted to ride down the street to see Iron & Resin, which he hadn’t heard of. We hopped on the bikes and rolled through downtown Ventura and parked in the back of the I&R shop. I introduced him to Cierra who works there, and he took a look around the shop at all the cool camping gizmos and gear. A few minutes later my friend Shad strolled in from across the street at the coffee shop to say hello.
Shad is a huge BMW fan, so they nerded out over German engineering for a while, traded road stories, and let me do my photo thing while they entertained themselves.
The Monster looks so tiny next to his big 1993 Honda XRV 750!
Then Shad helped me out and took some more photos to commemorate our new friendship. Germany and America!
It was truly awesome to hang out with Max while he’s visiting California and the USA, and I hope to see him when he comes back this way.
When I asked him where he was headed that evening, he told me he was trying to find somewhere near LA to stay, however nothing had come through on the couchsurfing websites and such, so he was probably going to hang out in the mountains. I offered him some of our compound space for his tent, and to check in with some friends in Los Angeles about somewhere he could dig in for the night. The lovely Stacie B. London replied telling me to send him to the ESMB Tuesday Night Ride that evening, and that she’d make sure he has a place to stay. He seemed excited for another adventure within an adventure- we got him the GPS coordinates, I rode with him to the freeway onramp, and then he was gone.