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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Mt. Baker HOG Chapter Bike Blessing

Saturday April 24th, 2010

Today was the 10th annual Mt. Baker Chapter HOG (Harley Owners Group) bike blessing. Chapter Chaplain and former Cornwall pastor Fred Moore led our first bike blessing in 2001.

We woke up today to dark clouds with a really good chance of rain. Larry spent Thursday afternoon washing and shinning the trike so it would look good today. Looks like there will be another bath for the bike next week.

Brian Christie led the bike blessing today with Brother Paul Westby of the Rushing Wind Biker Church in Anacortes and associate pastor Ken Linse with Rushing Wind Biker Church North Bellingham.

The HOG members and guest met at Mt. Baker Harley-Davidson for coffee and donuts before departing at 10:45 AM for the Zuanich Point Park at the waterfront for the official blessing. It was a great place for the blessing with plenty of parking for the bikes and the statue at the park reads “Safe Return” which was fitting for the blessing of the bikes.

Brother Paul opened with a short prayer, read from Luke 6:27-38 then closed in a prayer to bless the bikers, their bikes, and a safe riding season.

Those attending the bike blessing were: Dave Lahr, Jan McDaniels, Dave & Dawn Johnson, Dave & Lorie McNeill, Ron Johnson, Lorri Gillis, Brian Christie, Paul & Jeanny Westby, Ken Linse, Rob & Kaye Hansen, Mike & Jeannie Gilbert, Mike & Dana Snyder, Art Anderson, Larry & Billie Marrs.

So the lunch ride that was planned by Brian Christie, Ron Johnson as the sweep and Larry Marrs as the road captain had a change of plans when it began to rain. We were going to ride to Sumas to El Nopal restaurant but that was at least an hour away, and two hours riding in the rain to and fro did not appeal to anyone. Lucky for us that El Nopal has another restaurant in Ferndale so we headed out Marine Drive thinking we might take the route along the water and see an eagle but the weather was not going to hold so we turned at Ferndale Road and cut across Slater Road to Ferndale. So far so good, we stayed off the main streets, across the railroad tracks to Portal Way. It was the home stretch and then we say the sign, “motorcycles, extreme caution, bump”. Bump? The sign should have said potholes, lots of potholes and they were filled with dirty, muddy water. On a trike you can’t really avoid the dips, puddle, holes, or bumps with three tires you are going to hit something.

I started to point out the potholes on one side of the bike to those behind us, then the other side, and then I gave up. It was a mine field and there was no turning back. Two hundred yards or so might not seem far in a cage, but on a bike it is like time stands still.

Safely in the restaurant parking lot where everyone could dismount and look at their muddy bikes, muddy leathers, and breathe with a sigh of relief. Every agreed that we would not go back the same direction on our way home.

Larry had called ahead to cancel the first reservation in Sumas and let the Ferndale restaurant know that we were coming and how many there were. We settle in with chips and salsa and do what we do best….enjoy spending time with friends over a meal.

It was a great day even with the rain, the potholes, and the mud. We had been blessed and this was our first test and we all passed. Hallelujah!

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