Summer mornings are made for exploring on a motorcycle. It gets light
early and the mornings are cool and the day beckons. There's nothing
better than getting in an early ride on a Sunday morning before the rest of the world wakes up and then stopping for breakfast.
Or riding to the zoo while it's still relatively cool and quiet and the animals
are out and active. Or getting a few photos of the city when there's no traffic
and the sunlight provides perfect lighting.
Summer nights are made for exploring on a motorcycle, too. It stays
light late, and it stays warm all night and the night beckons. There's
nothing better than a late night ride to relax before bedtime. Or a
wee-hours ride when it's just you and the night critters and not a car in
sight. Or just running "a quick errand" as an excuse to get out and enjoy
the scent of magnolia or honeysuckle in the night air.
Below are some of the summer's best moments, day or night.
Select any picture to view a larger image.
Leahy's Trailer Park—Before I-40, US 70 was the major route through Memphis, and the only crossing over the Mississippi River for hundreds of miles in either direction. The old highway is still lined with the skeletons of motor courts, service stations, auto dealers, banks, and other businesses that competed to be on the main
Leahy's Trailer Park is still in business, but like the park itself, its sign
has seen better days. The paint is peeling and the neon is completely
missing. But I can't pass the place without thinking of Office Jim Lahey
(retired) and Sunnyvale's other "Trailer Park Boys".
El Bandido visits Leahy's Trailer Park on US 70 in Memphis
The rustic sign has seen better days.
Bikes on Beale—Bike Night in the Memphis area is a pretty big deal. Wednesday nights bring riders to Flying Saucer, Huey's, Joe's Crab Shack, Hooter's,
Side Car Cafe, and the biggest bike night scene of them all, Bikes on Beale. Music in the street, "big ass beers", people-watching and motorcycles of all kinds make B on B a mid-week must.
The Marie Laveau motorcycle stripped of flowers, Barbies,
Popeye-themed bike on Beale Street.
The Popeye-themed helmet matches!
This is James on his James custom bike.
This is James Jr.'s face on the back of James' head.
"Little James" on Big James' helmet.
Shelby Farms Park—At 4,500 acres,
Shelby Farms Park is one of the largest urban parks in the nation, five times larger than New York City's Central Park.
The Park is a combination of land historically flooded by the Wolf River and
what was once the Shelby Country Penal Farm, and prior to that the
Nashoba plantation/commune (circa 1825). Now it serves as a sort of "big back yard" for the
Memphis area. In addition to recreational activities, the park has
agricultural research fields (such as cotton and bamboo, for the Memphis Zoo
pandas) and a herd of American Bison.
Gin Tama at Shelby Farms Park's American Bison Range.
A couple bison stay cool in the pond.
The bison were wallowing in dust to keep the bugs off.
One of several calves from this spring.
Cotton blossoms in August will be cotton bolls by October.
Gin Tama at the sunflower fields.
Sunflowers at Shelby Farms Park.
"Roam The Park" logo.