During our trek across PA we had a couple instances worth memorializing in writing.
Some place in the Kills of NY we were traveling along when the car in front of us starting laying on his horn. At first I thought it was simply a case of New York rudeness, when out of the corner of my eye to the right I saw a car stopped halfway into the intersection. I grabbed a fistful of the right lever and came to a screeching halt. ABS really does work. I have been in situations before requiring a heavy dose of brakes and managed to keep the front tire slowing but still turning, which I understand is a good thing. I could feel the on and off of the brake as if there were little bumps in the road. Now whether or not the outcome on the Connie would have been the same I do not know, but I surely appreciated the assist from Yamaha and impressed with ABS
Background to Incident Two
Recently there was a thread on the NER forum about loud pipes, loud horns and lousy drivers. My thoughts were, somehow I have managed to put on well over 100,000 miles in the last 4 or 5 years and do not recollect any situations where I wanted to curse out any drivers. I was commenting to MeAsWe, maybe I have been lucky or I am aware of the situation around me and have managed to stay clear of those types of event. With that said, on Saturday we were riding behind a pickup truck in heavy traffic. From the left was an On and Off Entrance / Exit ramp to another highway, quite possible I-99. There was a line of traffic coming off the highway with a white car, driven by a middle aged woman, with brown hair. She did not have a cell phone or a cigarette, but looked intent to getting off the exit ramp and be on her way. How do I know she was middle aged, her hair was not particularly neat and I figure if it were a 20 something or younger it would be all nice a prissy (hows that for stereotyping).
As we were perpendicular to the exit ramp, I saw an out of place movement out of my left eye and some white object much closer to me that I wanted. MeAsWe is coming over the Cardo headsets with”OMG we are gonna be hit”. I remember feeling those ABS brakes again, acceleration, brakes and acceleration again. What happened was pure instinct, I am not chalking it up to skill. I was targeting an exit path keeping a non contact distance between us and the white car and us and the rear end of the pick up truck we were following.
Long story short we made it thru that small slice of earth and turned away from the traffic onto a street where there was no traffic to gain our breathe and to calm the senses down. MeAsWe watching the whole thing said we came within literal inches of being tagged by the white car in the front and then again in the rear. Funny thing is even after it was over, my heart was calm and my hands we steady. We made a midstreet Uwey and continued on our way.
We are running Old Croton Lake Rd in NY (RT 129/118) at brisk pace, but not dangerously fast. It is early evening around 7pm and the sun is getting sleepy and ready to lie down for evening. The FJR is purring along in 3rd gear to keep the revs up to power out of the sweepers and corners. The bike is feeling awesome and I can feel MeAsWe legs tightened around my butt. There is very little traffic, if any, the road is in superb condition and the Shinkos are like little tentacles grasping and releasing the tarmac. I see the road changes from 129 to 118 out of the corner of my eye. As I enter the turn that is too tight for a sweeper but not a full blown corner, somewhere in between, I see the taillights of a car through the trees. I figure there is a traffic light and the car is stopped for a red light. Off the throttle and slow thru the final approach to the turn. The car comes into full view, no traffic light, but there it stood at a standstill. A deer looking at the car and then turning its head to look at the new arrival on the scene, US.
Well those three pitches must of been balls, because we made it home safely on Sunday. I thank (and I am sure I can say for MeAsWe a thank you too) those Angels that stayed with us all weekend. It is very much appreciated.