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Will Keckley / William Keckley
Keckley . Org
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26.05.07

Death in the family


I picked the spot on the map due to the curvaceous nature of the roads, and the abundance of water and trees in the area, on Google maps. I picked the restaurant by entering "breakfast" and "San Augustine" into Google local. But when i showed up at the intersection called San Augustine it was more magical than any product of Google could ever be, with the possible exception of Google spreadsheets.

I was met by a man John Doe, no really, that was his name. He saw my bike and took it upon himself to show me all the best trails to get it dirty on. what a magical town, you show up and they provide the fun. I went across the street to the "breakfast" spot in San Augustine, Happy Donuts, and ordered a croissant a Blueberry Donut, Bear Claw and a Gatorade. I was amazed when the lady told me i owed her $3.50, since thats practically what a single Gatorade would cost in Houston.

Ben showed up three decades later, and was struck by the same phenomenon. However more welcome than the low prices was John Does return, this time he got a Blueberry donut (good taste!) and wanted to offer us a place to stay. However all he had to offer was a lake front paradise complete with hand made dock. Only catch was we had to go NOW. Donuts digesting, we hit the road. John made his 3/4 ton pickup scream down the road giving us plenty of room to wind out the twisties. We lost sight of him when we started into the forest, but he would always appear on the other side of a corner for just long enough to make sure we were still in tow. He stopped the truck and grabbed a Motorcycle out of a shed on the road, and the chase continued.

After showing us to his little slice of heaven tucked away in the heart of the national forest, John decided a little Dirt was in order. So we cruised the "infamous" 9-mile road through the Mud and trees. the mud puddles required certain tiptoeing to insure you stayed clean, but after awhile i had had enough of that and flew headlong into them. It was going alright, dirty, but alright. We didn't stop rolling till dusk when we set up camp on the shores of the lake/river/Resevoir/creek whatever they want to call it, i'll call it fun.

The next day we set our own pace and had a blast, did some real fun paved rollers. we spent the day exploring the area and found some great gems, we woke at 8am and didnt get out of the saddle till that night. Biiig day. If you want to see what ground we covered i created a little Google Homage to our trip there.

As i was riding home i thought to myself what a wonderful trip, it had its scary moments but all in all we came out bruised and battered, but with a feeling of real accomplishment. For all the bent brake levers and bruises the bikes held up magnificen...t...Oh crap. My bike started chugging down as i crossed into he city of Houston's Limits. Flogging the go-juice i attempted to breathe life into my failing stallion. But despite my best efforts it died, at 60 mph on US 59. Hoping for the best i instinctilvy hit the starter switch, and was greeting with the purr of the engine, that quickly turned into a chortle as it struggled, coughing and sputtering to get me off the Freeway. Ont he feeder road, i was thinking, i am close enough, i can ride this beast through town flogging it and sputtering all the way home. The bike disagreed as it sputtered one last time dying here
. Long after dismantling my bike and trying to figure out the mysteries of its illness I made my one phone call, the call i had been saving since my phone threatened to shut off a day ago. Dad Help! Within a few hours i was back at home sobbing, i had a fallen soldier in the back of the pickup truck, so undignified.

On a side note, while iw as waiting by the side of the road for those few hours, not a single sole stopped out of the thousands that passed by in cars or even bikes, but a lone bicycler peddled up and let me make a follow up call on his phone. When we were by the roadside in the Piney Woods, the first car that passed us would stop, so would the second and third. It truly is a different world out there.
@ 15:38:25