Thursday, July 9, 2009

Mother Ship & HB to me

It started as a normal, routine day. Up at 5:30am and off to work before 7am. Since I don’t have to cross over any bridges or transverse any tunnels I have my choice of 3 routes to work


There is the fast route which I have abandoned because of the nature of the fast flowing traffic which emulates an Indianapolis speedway complete with tailgaters and speeds in excess of the posted limits. After a while you recognize the same aggressive vehicles which use cars as slaloms for their own purpose, only to catch up to them at the next light but it is nice to be able to get into 6th gear on the commute


There is the slow route which is great if you like to stop every block or so. The city, in an effort to discourage vehicular traffic, has installed traffic lights on nearly every intersection to keep the traffic from moving too fast. Also, they are not synchronized. It is nearly impossible to avoid a red light. This was my preferred route for a few months until last month I got rear ended by an inattentive driver who had been following me for a few miles. A group of cars (of which I was 3rd) were stopped for a red light and we had been stopped for a while when I heard a faint squeal and then a THUD. Luckily the damaged was only confined to the bumper cover, but still, it cost over $1,000. to have it repaired and the inconvenience of paperwork and insurance claims.


Naturally I gravitated to the 3rd route of choice which is a mixture of urban and arterial speeds which parallels our Skytrain, which is a light mono-rail rapid transit system. I snake my way through surface streets to end up on Lougheed Highway. It is not really a full fledged highway but rather an arterial route with speeds up to 70 kmh with signal lights every mile or so as I may my way to Coquitlam / Lougheed Mall area . If you are lucky and live close to the Skytrain line then your travels will be faster than using a car. A typical trip from New Westminster to the waterfront in Vancouver Harbour (downtown) will take 29 minutes (by Skytrain), or over an hour by car. The Skytrain route is nearly elevated the whole way so is not slowed down by vehicular traffic. If you do not live by a line, then you will probably still have to use your car as there is no parking anywhere near a Skytrain Station, and the few lots that are available or very prone to vandalism and theft as evidenced by all the broken glass on the ground.


The Mother Ship:

I finally arrive at work after a commute of about 35/45 minutes and park in my usual spot just outside of my window. Like Troubadour I can keep an eye on my bike but being in a 27 acre private complex there are no transients here and our spaces are at the end of a long driveway which leads to a dead end. You would need a purpose to travel down our private road and visitors cannot escape the sharp eyes of our staff who notice every vehicle that doesn’t appear belong. Like a busy hive, commercial trucks are buzzing in and out of our complex.


Another view of the office from my chair and my assistant Alisa sits just outside of my door to be available at my “beck and call” . Our job functions rely on our quick communication abilities so that while we each deal with specific customers, we both know details of each other’s accounts in the event of vacations, holidays and other absences.


Today my SV is alone. There is usually Harley parked next to me, but not today. I have the whole area to myself



And my bike gets to keep an eye on me working, through my window.


It’s too bad that I have to work on my Birthday, which is today, July 9th when I would rather be riding, but I suppose that it is better than the alternative .


  1. nice parking spot! for that matter, the office looked pretty good too!

  2. Happy Birthday to you bobskoot. Even though you had to work, you did get to ride your motorcycle. I try to schedule my self on Holiday for my birthday, but it seems something always comes up and I find my self there...


  3. Dear Bob:

    You kept me on the edge of my seat throughout this entire pictirial and narrative, waiting for something tragic to happen. I was expecting to read, "The huge metals truck careened out of control and rolled right over my bike. Or, "Then the fattest woman I ever saw, obviously as drunk as a lord, staggered into my office and said, 'You the guy who owns the toy bike outrside?"

    But there was nothing. You wrote a Seinfeld post about your parking spot!

    I do not recall you ever telling us you got rear-ended riding into work. And when did Vancouver become Dodge City, where municipal parking lots are invitations for vandalism and theft?

    Have fun at your rally ths weekend. We decided to leave a day earlier than planned, and I will be out the door on Sunday. The party is going to start one day earlier.

    And HAPPY BIRTHDAY Bob SKoot!!!!!

    Fondest regards,
    Jack "R" Toad


  4. Charlie6:

    I'm glad you got Brigitta back. I'm still a little unclear as to what happened. There is usually a fork which disengages the throwout bearing, are you saying that this in and out action is following the splines on the output shaft, and this is the reason that it has to be greased every 10 miles. seems like a bad design to me.

    While I don't have a valuable machine, it is nice to be able to watch it during the day


    as you get older, a birthday is just another day, but it is always very nice to receive good wishes from others.

    Mr Jack "r":

    Yes, unfortunately I did get rear ended and of course you are inconvenienced to get it repaired. Then there is the hassle if the other party changes their story. I am so fussy, and always worried about matching paint, etc. I must say, if I didn't mention anything, and you took a peek at the car, you would not notice anything. They did a superb repair job. Lucky thing I was not on the BIKE that morning, or I would have been in the Hospital. I go by the "gut feel" instinct. If I don't feel like riding, or have a premonition, then I take the car. This "gut feel" instinct has saved me many times from speeding tickets. I often get a strange feeling, so slow down and merge with other slower traffic, and 9 out of 10 times, the LEO's are up ahead.

    Last week I did a lane split while traffic was "dead" stopped (the only time I do it) in order to make the left turn signal before it changed. Then I gunned it on the Yellow light. A block or so down the highway I noticed a police cruiser behind me. OH OH I thought. The bike ahead accelerated and changed lanes and slalomed a few times to get way ahead. I kept the speed at the limit or 5+ over. The cruiser was on my tail for miles. I thought for sure a ticket was in the making.


    I can't help but think that you are a very lucky man indead to have Sue-Lee. I'm still enamoured with your bikini story in Greece.

    Can you please purchase a new camera with a wide angle lens and take a photo of Sue-Lee for us. Does she read your blog ? or does she think we are not real people yet

    Oh, I really like your office too. I like the relaxed pace of things in Turkey.

  5. I'm a day late , but Happy Birthday. They just keep coming around don't they. I get to park for free in a garage downtown while I am at work. But there are some places where I can park and still are my scooter from my office. It's a little strange, but I like to do that sometimes. Your commute seems like it could be a bit hairy at times with all that apparent traffic. Be safe out there.

  6. Bob, my best wishes to you for a Happy Birthday! Hopefully you were treated well, both at the office and at home on this day!

  7. Bob,

    Happy belated, belated b-day! I love the pics of the Suzuki from the window. The sign with the hours of operation posted is also a fav--as if the bike is letting you know its working ours. That rear end accident...if you were on a bike...I don't even want to think about it.

  8. BTW, how are you taking pics while moving. Do you have a Ram mount?


  9. cpa345 Jim:

    Vancouver is not motorcycle/scooter friendly but there are a few designated places to park them but at half the car rate. Our traffic here is really gridlocked. Too much traffic and little infrastructure roadways and bridges to get around.


    Unfortunately you know how it goes, when you get older it is just another day without excitement. Time is just flying by. But thankyou for your BD wishes. Hope you are having the time of your life in London


    I always little to my inner voice. It told me to take the car that day and while it was not a bad "hit", if I were on my bike I would have been on the ground sandwiched between the car ahead. It was very minor but still cost over $1K to repair. I still remember the "chirp" and felt the THUD.

    While I have a ram mount for my Video cam, I usually take photos while stopped for the light. I keep my camera handy and it is fast to start up. As you know, I have the G10 and the D-80, but for bike pictures I use an Canon SD780is. I have a post from last year regarding mounting my video cam, Panasonic SDR-20SW which is shockproof and waterproof, perfect for bike use.

    While moving, I ride without a left glove so I can handle the camera with my left hand. sometimes I have to hold the camera upside down. The camera is tethered around a neck strap so if necessary, I can just release it.