Soon after Big Mountain Run was over I made a run down to Texas. I wanted to see south Texas before it turned unbearably hot. I found myself at a place called Jamaica Beach, Tx. Just down the road from Galveston. Some of the greatest times I have had were by happen stance. With no destination in mind and letting the road and the weather take you where they will. Without expectation there can be no disappointment. I picked up a magazine off the bar in Jamaica Beach. The Horse Magazine was advertising its upcoming celebration called The Smoke out. I got on the bike and headed home so I could get ready for that epic journey. I left out early one morning heading to Santa Rosa, NM. I was going to meet up with Wes Hackett and his wife and ride in together to Smoke Out West. a Weekend celebration of motorSickles and dirtbags. Santa Rosa must be the armpit of all the places I can remember. I was standing in the front parking lot of a little shitty bar and diner when out of nowhere shows up Wes and Alicia. Santa Rosa just became a little closer to bearable. The back gravel parking lot of this shit hole was also what they called an RV park. Ya, really. We paid our fair and claimed our home ground for the next couple of days. The logic was that at least we would be close to shitty food, warm beer and a bathroom that we could use when needed. Smoke Out West was the starting point for The Long Road. A scheduled road trip of 5 days that would end in Rockingham, NC at the beginning of Smoke Out East. There were around 85 misfits that had decided to make this journey and some of these heathens have become friends that I will cherish for life. Our first stop on this road was at Brass Balls Choppers in Okla, City. OK. We had a little street party but they forgot to tell the local cops. The boys in blue were just waiting for us to step out of line and an Oklahoma jail was not on my to do list so I cut that party short and headed back to the hotel, parked the bike and walked to the nearest bar. Within 30 minutes the bar filled with alot of the folks that were on the road. I guess great minds think alike. In the morning, we headed out to a campground in Arkansas around 300 miles away. Along the way I happened apon a group of 15 bikers on the side of the interstate. As I was pulling over who did I see, Wes Hackett was flashing me. I pulled over and turned to see 15 bikers jogging up to me. Wes had informed them that I probably had beer in my cooler. Picture this. 16 bikers standing in the shadow of an interstate exit sign, drinking beer and waiting on a tow truck for a bike with a shredded rear tire.. When the beer was all consumed I thought they would fall over when I pulled out a quart of cherry moonshine. We got the bike loaded on a trailer and then we set out to find some place to go swimming. It was god awfull hot but within 10 minutes we were skinny dipping in a river under a rail road bridge. I am glad to report that there were some females with the group. I think it might have been a bit gay if it had just been a bunch of dudes. At the campground, folks were starting to bond a bit and with the help of a half gallon of Sailor Jerry Rum and the cooling effect of a slow moving river, I met some of the greatest people on planet earth. Who the fuck is Roadside Marty??? Thats what his stickers say. I had the pleasure of treading water and passing a jug with him for about 4 hrs. We laughed until the tears came. There were probably 10 of us in that river. telling stories of the road and sharing of our life experiences I will never forget trying to explain to a guy from Canada that just because he could stand up in the water did not mean that he could stand up and walk out of the water... He proved me to be correct and after a little projectile vomitting, he slid into a peaceful sleep. with his feet still in the water. I was amazed that the Canadian was one of the first people to be moving in the morning... Next stop... Memphis Tn. The magazine had scheduled a pub crawl down on Beale St. Way too much fun. I met a lady who, within 2 minutes of conversation, started bragging that she plays the Tuba... ya, I know, odd right... I played along for a moment and then I called, BULLSHIT. This woman left but within 5 minutes she had returned with a full size, marching band Tuba. Where in the hell do you hide a tuba??? why would you have a tuba with you on Beale St. on a Tuesday night. ?? There were many questions that went unanswered that night. I saw a homeless woman approach one of our group, asking to bum a smoke. Show your tits, was his response... She complied.. Amazing. Wed. morning as the sun was shining threw the hotel window it dawned on me that I was just about completely out of moonshine. I made the plan to seperate from the group and go to my house and restock my cooler. It was so nice to have a home cooked meal and a night in my own bed while the group spent the night in a field in Crossville Tn. watching old biker movies on a blow up screen. eating pizza and drinking beer. I met back up with the group at the Wheels through time museum in Maggie Valley, NC. What a wonderful place. I have fallen in love with the motorcycles and the people. If you like motorcyles, this is a must do. The party was all that you could imagine from a group that had been together for almost a week with very little adult supervision. Thoughts were not about yesterday or tomorrow. We were in the moment and thats all that really mattered. The morning sun rose onto a group of misfits that had dragged motorsickles down a very long road. Today would end in Rockingham, NC.