Saturday, May 26, 2018

Circus Minimus


The Culpepper & Merriweather Circus was in town yesterday.

Dora woke us up about 7:15 a.m. after she detected circus folks setting up in the park diagonally across from our house. It was a novel experience watching from our house as they unloaded cages of a lion and a tiger and our dogs fell strangely silent when the lion roared.

The Big Top was up on the Little League ball field by mid-morning and several of our neighbors joined me on the front porch to watch the proceedings.

There were performances at 5 and 7:30 p.m. and the roustabouts (I guess that's what they still call them) started tearing things down before the second show was over. They were gone by midnight.

And, no, we didn't attend.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The good news is that BMW warrantees batteries for 2 years

My 2003 BMW K1200GT is headed for the shop.

I rode it last Thursday and then parked it for six days to see if the battery would hold a charge.

I checked it this afternoon and it was flat again.

So I called Falcone Powersports in Indianapois, my local BMW motorcycle dealer, and made an appointment to ride down for service next Wednesday morning.

In the meantime, It's back on the charger.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Stay hydrated


This is what happens when you're pushing 73 and don't stay hydrated on a hot day.

I ended up in the Witham Hospital ER Sunday evening after nearly passing out at home. The initial fear, of course, was that I had a heart attack, so I chewed up the obligatory two low-dose Bayer aspirins while waiting for the EMTs. They did a quick EKG and determined there was nothing obviously wrong with my heart, but advised me to go to the hospital. Maria drove me there and the next stop was the ER (see photo above).

They gave me a chest x-ray to rule out a blood clot in the lungs, wired me up with a heart monitor and decided I should spend the right there.

Twelve mostly sleepless hours and a few blood tests later, they cut me loose with instructions to get hydrated and stay hydrated.

So I did and I am and now my GP wants to see me next Tuesday.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Makes iced coffee too


I got this Russell Hobbs coffee maker from the Amazon Vine Program last October and have used it almost every day since.

But its features conspire to leave me with coffee to thrown away the next morning. It turns off the heat after 40 minutes and most days that's too soon for a second cup. Happily, it only makes 8 cups instead of 12 like many coffee makers, so the waste isn't as bad as it could be.

I was lamenting the fact that I always have coffee left over at the end of the day the other evening when it finally dawned on me to pour the remaining coffee over ice, add sweetener and creamer and voila!, iced coffee.

Now I wonder why I didn't think of it long ago.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Diagnosis pending


The GT spent the last couple of days on the BMW charger and it was showing solid green when I disconnected it and went for a ride this afternoon.

I made a point of unplugging the GPS at each stop - post office, veterinarian's office and DQ. When I went to plug it back in at Dairy Queen, I noticed green corrosion on the plug. I scraped as much off as I could with my fingernail, plugged it back in and rode home.

The bike is sitting in the shed without a charger connection and with the GPS plug out. I'll let it set for four or five days and then see if the battery is drained. If the battery isn't up to snuff after that time, I'll charge it again and take it to the BMW dealer in Indianapolis. It's only eight months old and almost certainly still under warranty.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018


This poster is on the bulletin board at the Thorntown Post Office. Note the reference to Thornton City Park.

O, frabjous day! Calloo! Callay!


I took the K75S out for a spin today, convinced that the surgery my neighbor Grumpy performed last week had failed to fix the speedo.

As expected, the speedo needle didn't move during the ride to the post office, but it miraculously came to life when I headed out of town on Ind. 47 and continued to perform consistently all the way to Dairy Queen, where I stopped for lunch.

Suddenly, I am happy with my bike.
I had the Indianapolis BMW motorcycle dealer install a new battery in my 2003 K1200GT in late September.

I had it on a battery tender off and on through the winter, but it was dead when I tried to start it last week. I gave it an overnight charge and it was good to go for a ride up to the Lafayette Sam's Club and down to Aldi in Lebanon. That was last Thursday. It was dead again when I tried to start it yesterday - five days later.

I find it hard to believe that an 8-month-old battery can fail like this and wonder if something isn't draining it. The first suspect is the Garmin Zumo 550 with Sirius XM radio.

So I put it back on the charger this morning and will leave the GPS disconnected to see if it still can't hold a charge. Either way, it's a sure thing I won't be riding to the European Riders Rally in Burkesville, Ky. this weekend.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

It's a Hafner


Sorting through random boxes from our moves to and from Arkansas, I found this Hafner wind-up O-gauge train set that my parents gave me for Christmas around 1950.

It's the closest I ever got to an electric train set, my parents being overly cautious about electricity.

Today, it enjoys a new life on our living room mantel.