Saturday was quite the interesting day. We had a winter weather advisory calling for 1-3 inches, starting some time after noon, then rain after.
I was scheduled for an 11:00 service, which was fine. About an hour before, 701 (my boss) calls me to let me know that 714 is seeing snow flurries at his location, and is getting nervous. 714’s doesn’t have his sidecar mounted yet. He pranged his bike a couple of months ago, and tore up the sidecar mount, and hasn’t gotten the new one in yet, so he’s on 2 wheels. Not a good thing in snow.
714 gets sent home around 10:15, and I get switched over to his ride, which goes from a church in Grove City to a cemetery in Jerome Township. It’s about 26 miles, and on a normal day, that should be about a 35 minute run. We can use I-270 for most of that, and there’s not a lot of traffic on the rest of the route. But this is Central Ohio, and everyone forgets how to drive in the snow. Granted, it started coming down pretty hard; I bet we were getting about ¾ of an inch an hour. But in conditions like that, you’re allowed to slow down on the freeway. We were making about 30, but even then, I felt like we were pushing it. At one point, I watched a 15-passenger van spin out in front of me. As we crawled past, I saw Texas license plates, and the male Hispanic driver held his hands up, as if to say, “What do I know about driving in snow?”
Our 35-minute trip ended up taking over an hour. I had so much slush and snow coming off the front wheel that my airhorn cone got blocked with snow, muffling the sound quite effectively. There were places I was certain hadn’t yet seen a snowplow or salt truck. At one point, we did a lane change, where I pull over one lane, then slow down to block that lane as the procession pulls around in front of me. We only had ten cars, so that’s only about 350 – 400 feet or so of procession that I have to pass. But in the snow, where I’m only capable of about 35 before I start sliding, it’s not so easy to get back to the front.
I just keep reminding myself that I’m getting paid to ride a motorcycle. When that reminder doesn’t make it all better, then it’s time to hang it up.