Friday, May 3, 2013

Sonja (and Roland) Safe Travels

A new chapter awaits you as you travel back to live in Germany.  I was just thinking of all the good times we had when you were here and the fun we had.   I have no archives to look back on because all of my photos are lost due to the shutdown of Webshots, who was my image provider.  Today I was looking through some old photos and I got a bit sad that you have gone.   I remember when you were living in Alberta and you finally made the move to Vancouver

I remember the day that you picked up your "new to you"  BMW F650GS and made your first right turn onto Grandview Highway.   You were a bit unsteady so I told you we would take it easy and I would show you some country roads

We took the Barnston Island ferry and I remember how we both struggled to not slip on that metal deck, and how we had to back our bikes up.   It was a beautiful day for our first ride

We took our time and stopped for photos and generally just enjoyed our day

We took photos of these cows to show to ToadMama (Kathy)

These photos are in no particular order as I am posting more than usual

I think we ended up at Boundary Bay and decided to get some sand in our toes

We also navigated a few gravel roads.  Your GS is a natural and feels right at home here

Of course, after every ride we have to stop for a beverage before we part ways

Nothing but the best for my riding buddy

I remember we met one morning for Breakfast in Coquitlam with Geoff & Roland

Sonja (F650GS), Bob (Vstrom DL650) & Geoff  (GS500)

After breakfast the three of us headed East on Lougheed Highway and stopped at Dewdney for a quick group photo.   It was threatening rain but so far we were dry

I remember that you wanted to test out the seating position in Sport Bike stance

I am not sure what is happening but I think I was going to throw you into this lake

We stopped at the Kilby General store for some jars of homemade blueberry jam and it started to hail and sleet.  We decided to continue East

Where we ended up at Harrison Lake where we stopped for lunch at a Sushi place across from the beach

I remember that we hadn't eaten yet but you were so hungry you wanted to have a corn on the cob first

Another time we decided to ride up the Sea-to-Sky highway to Squamish

and we found parking across the street from "Fetish", and being a shoe store I just had to go inside and see what they had

I remember that it was a very hot day and we found a beach to cool our feet in the cold ocean water

I remember the first time I took you to Sharkey's in Ladner by the Fraser River

We sat on the wharf for a while and just enjoyed the day

All was peaceful until we had to make way for some people who wanted to load the kayaks onto their boat

Sonja in Shaniko, Oregon               July 2010

I remember our time together as we rode to Oregon for iMBC2010 .   It was very hot and we stayed too long in Leavenworth for lunch and we were tired so we decided to stay in Toppenish, WA and had an early dinner.    How was I to know that I had a lunch date the next day because our emails got mixed up and Mr Conchscooter (Michael) read his calendar wrong.

This meant that we had to ride 300 miles the next morning, and Michael decided to wait for us and delay his trip home by half a day.  We arrived a bit late but the 4 of us had a nice lunch, chatted a bit and then walked around downtown Bend, Oregon looking at things to buy

Here we are, the famous author of Key West Diary, Mr Conchscooter (Michael) and his trusty sidekick Cheyenne whom he let me walk

I know Michael would want me to admit that he was "the first" to wear Pink Crocs.  I was the 2nd to embrace this manly colour, so now you have a photo of the both of us together wearing our matching footwear (both with no socks too)

Sonja, Brandy (Trobairitz), Brad (Troubadour), Kari (Bluekat), Ron & Myself bob (bobskoot)

The next day we left Bend, OR and headed to Corvallis for a quick dinner with Trobairitz and Troubadour, then the two of us left and headed towards Lincoln City, OR

Here we are posing our bikes and Crocs© with the Yaquina Bay Bridge in Newport, Oregon

On our way home from Oregon we decided to stop in Seattle at the Pike Place Market where we would meet  Chuck (another famous blogger) for lunch

Yes, we have many memories of our time riding together.  The times we met after work for a quick beverage and a chat, our trip to Oregon for iMBC2010, and Hell's Canyon for iMBC2012 and the many lunches and dinners

I never told you but when we were coming back from iMBC2010  Oregon, we parted ways just east of Bellingham as you had to get home for a conference call, and I wanted to make a last minute visit to a friend so here we are saying our goodbyes by the side of the road.   This is where we parted ways.  We had been together for so many days riding together enjoying our time on the Oregon Coast, our ride south and now it all came to an end.  I watched you as you headed north.  I snapped this last photo of you riding by yourself.  I was no longer needed to protect you.  I stared as you were riding farther away and then you turned the corner and I was still alone, standing by the side of the road, in silence as there was no one else around

I eventually started my bike and for the first time in days I had to find my own way and I felt a bit empty.

but you weren't really gone.  You lived in Port Moody and I knew that I would be seeing you again.  Our paths would eventually cross.

This time you have really left.  You have packed all of your possessions and shipped them back to Germany.  Who knows what the future holds, if or when you return.   This time it is different.   The last photo above makes me a bit sad that you are riding away and I get a bit teary-eyed every time I see it

I posted this video a while ago and some of you may not have seen it.   It's Sonja's first day with her F650GS

and some footage from iMBC2010  Leaving Bend, OR and heading towards Corvallis, OR

 I can only say it was nice to have been your friend and I will cherish the good memories and wish that only good luck comes your way in whatever you do


  1. Very nice post. I liked seeing the older photos and can feel your sadness at seeing a friend move away...

    1. Richard

      These were the only photos I could get my hands on Fast. the rest are archived onto various DVD's all over the place. For the past 3 years I have just been leaving them on my external drives. I like looking at older photos too, so many memories . . .

  2. Excellent montage and tribute to a gret friend and riding buddy. Sonja you wil be missed, and by me as well since we haven't had the chance to meet IRL yet. Good luck on your travels. Thanks for sharing the memories Bob, I hadn't seen many of these trips.

    1. Lori:

      Unfortunately, my older posts are devoid of photos due to webshots being sold. I could revive a few, once in a while . . .

      don't forget, we haven't met YOU either . . .

  3. Lovely tribute! And wonderful to have those photos, but good friends never go away.

    1. Martha:

      Friends are friends where ever they are . . . They are as close as you computer. I think I have a friend in Madison too

  4. I too can feel your sadness. What a beautiful tribute to your friends.

    1. Pam:

      I sometimes do get a bit sentimental. I don't really have a riding buddy, but she was the only one that kept me company on our ride to Oregon back in 2010

  5. Replies
    1. Dom:

      Life is about making memories; good or bad. I still remember our good times in Montana in 2011 and being a part of your family for a few days

  6. You have some great memories of your trips and friends. It was nice to see you had them since losing the Web Shots site. My friend Lynda also lots hundreds of photos too by it shutting down. I use Smug Mug. It costs $ but you can choose a level of your gallery. The beauty of it is, you can upload to them and them download the whole gallery via zip file so you have one on the net and in you files at home. You can also privatize the galleries. You may already know that... but just in case.

    1. Kathy:

      I had always wanted my blog to be a sort of Diary so I could go back and relive the good times, but now all is gone prior to October 2012. I can sympathize with your friend Lynda . . . but what can we do except to just move forward.

  7. Bob, what a lovely recap. I am all teary-eyed now. Be sure that I will think of you whenever I am barefoot ;-) Hugs from Germany, SonjaM

    1. Sonja:

      I shall always remember our good times and our time together in Oregon. We shall meet again, one day . . . but, I now have a friend in Germany.

      Yes, barefoot weather is here, and I hope it arrives in Germany soon too

  8. What a great farewell - But I'm sure it is not good-bye!

    1. Karen:

      " till we meet again . . . someday " I am thinking that one day soon we shall meet again too. (fingers crossed)

  9. Replies
    1. Coop:

      Thank you. We should be happy that we had a chance to meet, if only for a short time and cherish our memories . . .

  10. Beautiful post Bob! You are going to have to go to Germany to visit them and ride!

    1. Dar:

      Thank you Dar. I will always remember our good times together. You just never know what the future holds

  11. What a great way to reminisce.

    They will be missed, but I know we'll see them again, just a matter of time.

    1. Trobairitz:

      A friend is always a friend. We have to look ahead and wish them well, and hope that they find what they are striving for. Never gone from our hearts and always close in spirit

  12. Thanks for this reminiscence. Hard to say good-bye. But for good friends, it's never really good-bye, just a longer "See you later."

    Sorry I haven't followed as closely as usual. I've forgotten how much work and time is involved in a move. But seeing that beautiful countryside in your photos and videos gets me excited about being up there. I really can't believe what you have all around you, just day to day.

    1. John:

      I know you have a BIG move coming up too. Only a month before you arrive on Whidbey Island. Lots of logistic and planning . . . hopefully it will go as smooth as you imagined. Lots of good scenery where you are headed to and we could meet up with you if the border lines aren't too long