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May 22, 2023TranscriptCommentShare

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Murrae & Mabel

Listen in as Maggie Dean interviews M&M, namely Murrae Haynes and Mabel Chin. Music by Otis McDonald. Download our feed here.


As legible as we are intelligible ...


Piper: I'm Arm a Piper. I'm

Robin: Robin Dean. I'm Tim Clark.

Travis: And I'm Travis Burleson.

Robin: This is the t r O podcast. I'm sorry, the The Riding Obsession Podcast.

Travis: The riding The the the the riding, your

Tim: source for misinformed opinions, half baked ideas about motorcycles.

Robin: I

Piper: heard that you took an awesome ride.

Robin: Yeah. So that's very interactive of you to ask. That's not scripted or predis discussed at all in a natural way. I wanna hear

Piper: about it in its depth in your

Travis: entire, I know I have some disgusted,

Robin: but I will allot the tell about the thing for you and the words will happen from my face. This is a fun episode because it's with our interviews with Murray Haynes. Murray Haynes is a quality assurance Ms. F coach. Uh, that's, that's the boring stuff we usually talk about. He is also a racer, retired. He raced. Superbike was Arma. He welcomed me to New Mexico the first time we got here. He helped me, uh, start coaching here and it's just gonna be a really great interview. He and his significant other Mabel, literally Maria Mabel, Eminem, they used to do CCAR racing together. She was the monkey. He was the driver. And they talk in depth with Maggie Nina about that.

Travis: So, Murray, Mabel and Maggie

Robin: were Eminem and M phenomena.

Travis: Well, they did like eight mile races. Right.

Robin: I see what you did there with your sense of humor and it was very creative. So we have this New Mexico tour that isn't really just a New Mexico tour. It's actually New Mexico and Arizona. And the heart of this route, it goes through Hillsborough, New Mexico. That's the core of the matter. That is the Central Hillsborough. Unfortunately, the road that we use through that area is closed down because there was a mudslide and an entire section of the road is now in the base of the valley. Uh, the other side of this route is I've told you guys about a 52 59, which is terrified. It's a, it's an awesome ride. Gr but it's, so, I don't know how you make, is

Travis: it like canyon or mountain or

Robin: just it's mountain. You start in the flats and you are approaching mountains, and then you go up into those mountains and then you don't come down for a minute and it gets chilly. You remember how we had nothing but decreasing radius curves coming back through the Ohio route, the advanced route of day one on sevens.

Travis: Yeah. Every corner tightened up.

Robin: Every corner tightened up, no matter which direction we were going. Physics, who knew, but that ride, first off, remove all of society. Your destination is a dirt T intersection and then randomly scatter gravel in the center of the the lanes. Remove sections of road unexpectedly in a blind curve, and then add elk. So that's day one of our New Mexico tour because I figure we'll go nice and slow. Nobody's gonna prove anything. We're just gonna go nice and slow and explore the terrain and make sure everybody's comfortable and get them ready for something that's way easier and a lot more fun. Which is the one that goes through Hillsborough, which again is closed down. So I got to ride some roads I've never ridden before. Only because the extension road for that tour can only be accessed by way of, I think it's 27. Let me check my ride with GPS here. Let me go to rawood and it's totally not a plug. You guys want me to share a screen? Yes,

Tim: please do. I have

Robin: no imagination. Here is the magic section of the tour. All right. You see

Travis: this? Yeah. Yes. That is a very squiggly, squiggly wiggly

Robin: through

Travis: Emory Repass, and there's a cemetery right

Robin: there, which, yeah, just in case that is not the, the super awesome that this over here is. This is 6 66. Oh,

Travis: okay. Yeah, so that's like in a

Robin: canyon. Getting there. You've got this majestic, beautiful awesomeness that goes through here and through Kingston, and it eventually does all these things through me. Pass and takes you to Silver City. Right? You just jump across. Now since that's closed, I had to do an extra 90 miles. This was just a beautiful, beautiful intermission. Just a good

Travis: time. Well, you can see it's like a very smooth, um, altitude gradient on the bypass.

Robin: Yeah. That's gonna become part of the story. I hope I can keep this entertaining for y'all because this was and very straight. There's a town, I think it's called Rearden. Here we are. So I make my left according to my instructions. I start heading due west and I arrive in some small town and I noticed some, some train rails and I'm like, Hey, this is kind of cool. Got four active train lines. That's, that's like good sleeping really? At night. That stuff puts me to sleep. Mm-hmm. I'm like, whatever's going on here. I stop for tacos and then I start my ride this entire mountain. Wherever it is. I don't know if I can really see it here. I'm on a four Laneer. It's like a highway speed limit. Is 15 miles an hour for miles? What? 15 miles an hour? Is it that steep? No. Uh, I look and I see, okay, now I've got a chain link fence with boulder catchers and I don't quite understand what's going on. There's a road on the other side that's really well paved and polished. I'm like, they're making a new road. Then I see a super cat go by and I'm approaching a mine. Oh. So I go up this hill. And then the whole planet just opens wide up. You're on the edge of a cliff. The speed limit is like 15 here, 20 miles there. But it's posted. It feels like you're on an expressway. And I look down, I can't see the bottom of this mine. It's just like you're looking into the 6 66 is right. That's the right name for this road. So I'm looking down nice. And it's right there, like this is terrifying. And then I look up and I can see clouds touching the top of this mine. So it's this entire mountain that they're stripping cat vehicles everywhere. And I'm on this bike. Just get up to the top of the hill, there's a bridge tunnel and it just says, uh, just says slow. Okay, fine. So rude. I am not, are you calling me slow? So I ride through this thing. And over top, you know, I see the, one of the supercats go by and the whole like, and the whole earth's shaking after that. It becomes sort of a, a free for all. It's like a rollercoaster ride through the mine. You know, Indiana Jones, I think all the way to the top. And I am now entering Apache. I ride into the gates of Apache National Forest and Piper in Colorado. I'm sure you get some dramatic storms.

Piper: Oh, it's happening right now

Robin: as we speak. Yeah. Like purple clouds on one side, yellow clouds on the other. They're all talking,

Piper: it's usually like really green, really angry

Robin: looking like, do the mountains charge up the rain at all? Like do they create, do you happen to know if they create any atmospheric effect where there's more rain at the top of a mountain just because of proximity or something like that?

Piper: Um, I'm sure, but I failed out of meteorology school.

Robin: Good chat. So I'm like, all right, I'm, I'm starting this. Uh, now I'm in it. And it was green and exactly what you would expect. I'm heading to Alpine, Arizona. The destination for this part of this leg of the New Mexico tour is actually Alpine, Arizona. It becomes exactly what you expect from a name like that. All the trees are well pine, white pines. Yeah. And it's getting more and more remote, super rural. I'm seeing less and less side roads, and the road is just a constant onslaught of awesome technical with every version of road service you can imagine in terms of if we can turn this into a form of pavement, we'll use it. So there was a lot of extreme division in what the road was made up of. I enjoyed the absolute, it was just awesome. So what started to happen there began to be this pattern where I'd be riding directly towards one of those storms. A deep blue bruise in the sky that you can see is just dumping buckets and buckets of rain. And I'm like, oh, okay. Do I need to stop putting on my gear? And it was getting colder. So I started at 91 degrees at the mine, 91 degrees by the top. When I started, it was about, uh, 73. And then when I started getting closer and closer to these storms, 55, every time I got right up to the storm, the road would turn and I'd ride into the light. I'm not religious, by the way. Hmm. And I just kept on catching a break halfway into all of this. There is no way out. Oh, yeah.

Travis: Yeah. It, you're just, there's one road.

Robin: Right about here is where I got hit. The clouds are touching the land around me. It's almost like a fog. The lightning is being generated next to me and firing down into the valley. Either I go 50 miles back. Or I go 50 miles forward. Either way, I have to ride in this. So I stopped and took pictures. Pretty off. Oh, there we go. So you saw the pictures on baseballs, right? Yeah. No, you didn't see, yeah, you did. You gave the little heart

Travis: pipe. Lock this up out of her account. We already went over this.

Robin: Well, you were just in it today. Well,

Piper: I, I only look at Facebook for you guys. I, I loathe Facebook as you should. Good answer, right answer. I did see these pictures and I was like, oh, that's beautiful. I guess I just didn't realize that that was, now I thought that was like old pictures of some beautiful place you'd visited. That doesn't look like Arizona at all to

Robin: me. Pine mountaintops that are in the sky. Next to the moon. Yeah. Yes. That's

Travis: gorgeous. Turns out Arizona's really big. They're like a whole

Robin: state.

Piper: They're not as dry looking as I thought it would look as

Travis: she said.

Robin: 50 miles in, I stop, I take pictures, and then I frantically. Pull out my rain gear. I've got that freaking gimp suit, body condom built crap that I even advertised and did a whole video out because it's great until I get this and I'm, I'm like stretching it like an angry plastic bag just tearing holes in like, you know, just hating this thing onto myself. The thing about this is that when you're that in a hurry to get it on cuz it's already raining. I mean I'm already soaked. Yeah. Yep. But it's cold. It'll warm you up cuz it seals you in

Travis: and you're already soaked so you can just pee.

Robin: And I did, of course it kept me warm. Now pull this thing out. The thing about doing that is, if it's like that, it will adjust all of the textiles and gear on your person into extremely awkward and uncomfortable

Travis: positions. Of course. Oh yeah. Cuz once your gear's wet, it's like super sticky.

Robin: Yeah. This thing's made a vinyl, so my jacket's now on backwards and I think my pants were on my jacket. I was supposed to go in the. The jacket was like on my right foot, but I've got the gear on and I'm riding and I'm, I still was just smiling. It was awesome. Uh, Murray, the guy that we did the interview with on this, told me this part of the tour should be northbound only. Hmm. And I get it because you are consistently raising elevation. You've got all the control in the world. In the wet, in the dry, it's just start to finish an uphill climb. The bike handles better and there's no frying your brake pads all the way down the hill. Yeah. Because it is all uphill on 6 66, as we shall say, all the way to Alpine. Wow. I want to give a shout out to Marie about this. Thank you so much for the tip about the dew North bit. Yeah, 180 here is far less technical, but absolutely gorgeous. And we're gonna ride that back to, uh, the other one that we don't talk about that will then go through the beautiful mountains. We'll go up to the cliff dwellings, and then we return all the way back to beautiful truth of consequences for the hot springs and the Butte. This was, uh, roughly 800 miles, so it was like just shy 800 miles in two days, which I hadn't done in a while. And it's all like that. And then I got home and did a zoom meeting with I, I must have sounded drunk. I wasn't, I wasn't, I wasn't drinking. I was trying to reason with MSF instructors. I sounded as bad as they did. How does your butt feel? I have the right bike. And after this amazing interview with the person who told me to only go north on this, on this particular route, we're gonna discuss butts and bikes and things and stuff. And the right bike. The right bike, yeah. The right bike. Uh, that's no eighties allowed.

Piper: So I was also wondering if you took a picture and or a video of you in the rain condom, because I care more about that than your pictures of Arizona.

Travis: There are some, somewhere

Robin: they're around.

Piper: Did you take a picture of your yourself in the rain condom?

Robin: No, I did not. But bummer, I do have a video of that on the T R O YouTube channel that I'll hit you to. So that's how I spent the past two days, which is why, um, you know, more socially dwarfed than usual. That sounds

Travis: awesome. That sounds awesome. Yeah. I've ridden in moderate traffic to work a couple times a week. Those last two months. Yep.

Tim: Yeah.

Robin: Yeah. Same. So I'm basically just an asshole in the bunch right now,

Tim: kind of. Yeah. I managed to hit 61 miles an hour on the monkey. How terrifying

Travis: was that? That is impressive. Yeah. Were you doing a

Tim: Superman on flat ground? Just about Yeah. That, that was belly down to the tank. Because I've got that, uh, section around the south side of, uh, lake Manona here, where it's either side roads that take you a long ways out of the way, or I can take the on-ramp that becomes the off-ramp to John Nolan and. So I am technically on the highway and I should not be on that bike, but I do, you never leave the ramp. But I'm not actually merging into traffic with it, so I'm just like chinned down praying that nobody like runs me down. Nice.

Travis: Well, 61, that's the speed limit is 55. No one should be going faster than that.

Tim: No, no, no. And I, I don't ever see anyone go any faster than 85.

Travis: Yeah. A hundred. Unless, unless they're in the Flex Lane. And the flex lanes closed. Yes. Yeah. Then, then,

Tim: uh, I believe there is no limit there.

Travis: Yeah. Is what they, you're off road seem to

Tim: say. Yeah. But yeah, no, it's been fun to ride that thing around. And yesterday I took the fast bike. It's my, my division now is slow bike, fast bike, even though my fast bike is not terribly a fast, not a really, really fast bike, but by comparison it feels like a rocket ship. It's quite an entertaining transition. When you realize that in sec, the top of second gear, you're going faster than the other bike could actually go at all. 62.

Robin: Yep. If you're going 55 on that bike, that feels slow. But if you're going 55 on a monkey, that feels like the whole world's gonna explode. Yeah.

Tim: Yeah. I mean, it's, you're, you're buzzing and, uh, it's good.

Travis: Arme. What's it like going 55 on an RSV four? You

Piper: feel like you're crawling Yeah. Yeah. At like a snails pace that

Travis: you're halfway through. First gear,

Piper: not even

Robin: close. Seems like you would park the bike at that speed, like you just pull into the garage and jump off and let it go around in circles of 55 until it's time to ride it again. Just about, well we're gonna get back to that in a second here. With all that blather I just delivered, we are going to go meet the couple that gave me the advisory on the do north section of 6 66. Awesome people created so many opportunities for me here in New Mexico. Uh, amazing story to tell Maria Mabel. Take it away, Maggie.

Maggie: This'll be a fun conversation because I didn't get to do any research on either of you. Usually I have some idea of what to ask you about, so we'll try to stumble our way through. But we are recording now. So welcome to the T R O podcast. We have Murray Haines and Mabel Chin. Both Avid motorcyclists, Murray and Mabel. Tell us a little

Murrae: bit about you. Go ahead. You go first. Oh, I go first. Okay. Uh, well, uh, I started a really long time ago and, uh, it's probably the most consistent thing I've done in my life. Um, been road racing, been teaching racing. Uh, I'm an MSF writer coach. Uh, I do quality assurance for Ms. F and for Harley Davidson. Uh, what else? I was a psych coordinator. Uh, I, I will ride anytime I possibly can and when I don't need a vehicle, so, uh, yeah, no, it's, uh, lifelong. So that's kind of a nutshell.

Maggie: And what about you,

Mabel: Mabel? Um, I've been riding half my life, so I started riding 35 years ago and, um, I like riding on vacations basically. I'm not a, you know, a daily commuter rider or any kind of rider like that. It's, I like to go on vacations, I like to go on long rides. Um, pretty much I do a lot of other things. Um, I'm athletic. Yeah, let's just put it that way. Been athletic my entire life. I was bicycling ever since I was little and

Murrae: never stopped. Yeah, she does the, uh, five borough bike tour in New York every year with her brother. How many years in a row have you done that now?

Mabel: I can't remember. I, I think the first one was 2003.

Murrae: Yeah. So I,

Mabel: he did, he did the third one, which was I think 1977.

Murrae: Right. And she's also a rock climber. There's lots of things she does. Uh, or current, I guess current or in the recent past.

Mabel: Yeah. I have, um, black belt in TaeKwonDo and we, um, at the age of 60, I started studying Kung Fu, but there's no longer a school here. So we have have, uh, transitioned to online Tai Chi,

Maggie: online Tai Chi. Interesting.

Mabel: There is, there is a guy in Bend, Oregon who does, um, a couple of live classes a week and then everything else is on video. Um, and he is constantly upgrading. Yeah, he's very good. He's from China. Wow.

Murrae: Yes. It. It, it's part of the challenge to stay shaped as one ages, so,

Mabel: right. So, you know, I do that. I do jazzer size. I, to be honest, I only bike once a year now I just do the F five for a bike tour. 40 miles, 40 miles over bridges. All the bridges and the fly boroughs. Yeah.

Maggie: Do they close down traffic?

Mabel: They close down traffic. They get 32,000 riders. It's a lot of fun. Wow.

Maggie: That sounds amazing.

Mabel: It's a lot of fun. So I'm going in a couple of weeks. Yeah, you should do it.

Maggie: It's, it sounds like a lot of fun. And what I'm hearing from both of you is that you're both lifelong learners. You know, it sounds like you're trying new things. You're keeping active, which is both good for the body and the mind,

Murrae: right? Yes. Yes. Well, when, when you hit your seventies, your maintenance quota, quota goes up. And so, you know, working out and doing Tai Chi and being active, I think is the way to continue doing what we're doing. I mean, I'm planning on riding well into my eighties and, uh, I who are still active riders. So it, it's all possible if you just pay attention, you know, so the, yeah, it's, uh, and we've done some, some active racing. Um, there's a group called the American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association. It's, uh, pretty much vintage was some modern. And, uh, I raced when I was younger and then stopped, uh, because of having a family. And then went back to it, I guess in, what was it, 2007? Something like that. 2009? No, that's when I went to arma. So yeah, 2007 I, I went to a local AMA club and got re-certified and relicensed and then started racing, uh, with Arma. And about a year in, I got invited to help with a race school with a guy who is a six time national champion. And, uh, so did that and raced and did well. And then in 2017, um, Well, when we were traveling, it's coast to coast kind of racing. Uh,

Mabel: well this was 2016 when I, um, so I was considering racing at some point cuz I was always going with him to all the races and, you know, finding things around cities to do. And at some point I thought, well, maybe I might do the, the little lamonts where you jump on the bike and run with it to get it started. And I thought about it for a little bit. And then in New Orleans at the track there, in March of 2016, I ran into a champion Sidecar Monkey named Pat Collins at the banquet, the awards banquet. And she started talking to me about sidecars. And I thought that might be something really fun for the two of us to do together. And it was a sort of on and off rainy weekend. And she said to me, you know, maybe I can get my guy to take you around the track. And I had already brought some gear and my helmet. So I think on that Saturday they had canceled the races

Murrae: in the afternoon. Yeah, it was, it was raining. Yeah.

Mabel: And um, so Tim Joyce offered to let, to take people around the track in his sidecar. So I jumped in and I got on it and I really loved it. And several other people came in afterwards and there was still a little time. And I went on it for a second time and I said, I wanna

Murrae: do this. Yeah.

Mabel: So she came back. So, so having been a rock climber, it's, it's, it's, um, hanging off of something I. It's not very far into me, except this one's a little bit low to the ground and it's moving. So I thought this might be a lot of fun. So I told him about

Murrae: it and yeah, well she came in the second time. I have some video of it from my phone where she's getting off and she just laughing because she had so much fun. So she told me about this and like she said, we were thinking about a little Honda one 60 and that kind of stuff. But then when she said this, uh, I am not one to sit on my hands. So within, uh, a couple of weeks, a friend of ours, uh, I think he's still there, was the, uh, uh, a sidecar racer and also the manager of Jay Leno's garage. And so we've known each other for a while. And so I called and said, Hey, how can I get started in this? And about a week later, I got a package in a mail with a bunch of photos. And contacted this guy in Arizona, and, uh, we bought a sidecar he had been building. Yeah. And it, it, it's an interesting story because the, he originally had built the sidecar to sell to a museum and so they backed out. So he had the sidecar there and, uh, he sold it to, it was reasonably priced, uh, but we found out, and it's nothing against him, we found out later that it was literally built to be a showpiece and not to actually run. And so to run well, to run well, so, so we started our adventure, uh, with sidecar racing and, uh, You know, long story short, we ended up, uh, there's a friend up in Illinois who's a specialist at, uh, rose Farm Motorcycles. His name's Jim. So we ba, he and I rebuilt a motor in the drive train and just basically made it an operational sidecar. But being vintage, the interesting thing as we ran in, uh, it was lost era. Yeah. SC three, which is all CCAR three, which is also known as Lost era sidecar. So it was built to be authentic to the era. Mm-hmm. Which was seventies. So it was pretty interesting how it was put together, but there was always something to do. We were at, uh, it, it

Mabel: broke

Murrae: down almost every race. Yeah. We'd get a couple of lap. There was one race where, uh, we run the East Coast and. It, uh, it, one of the coil brackets fell off.

Mabel: This was before we finished the first lap. It was right just before finishing. Oh my

Murrae: gosh. The coil bracket broke off and so we cruised off into the grass

Mabel: and we were the only one racing that category

Murrae: that day. So, uh, so did you go for

Mabel: the zip time? So what happened was the, um, the track worker said, you know, so we, there was no way to put the coil back on and the track worker said, you know, okay, this is Robling and there are people that live. On the other side of the track. And there were some people about, what was it, 30

Murrae: yards away or something? Yeah, that, yeah. Just on the other side of the

Mabel: fence. And they, they were watching from their garage, so he says, why don't you go over there and see if they have any zip ties? Right. So I ran over, never took my helmet off, everything just ran over with my gloves and everything. And, um, I asked, uh, the woman, I said, do you have any zip ties? I really need zip ties. And, uh, she, she asked her husband and then she found them and she rummaged around. I ran back with these zip ties and we had just enough time before the race was over to, to zip tie the coil on and finish that lap.

Murrae: Yeah. So, so that we, we got credit for the race. We got credit for winning the races.

Maggie: Well, even though you were the only ones in that class and

Mabel: that you would not have gone credit if we didn't finish the lap. Yeah. You have to finish

Murrae: one full lap. Drills are, you have to do a lap. But then when we were in California, At, uh, Willow Springs. Willow Springs, which is a great racetrack. I love the racetrack. We were doing actually doing really well. And what happened is something happened, the rear rotor got hot and expanded. It's seized and, and seized up the rear brake. And so we're off the side of the track. So we're good at pushing to the side of the track, right? So, so, so then some people from a modern class come by and, uh, they said, oh, well, we'll, we'll help you get back by this time, right? So they pushed us back in, but then it was going around that they had run into us. They said,

Mabel: oh, the modern, uh, crashed

Murrae: into the vintage. So, so they pushed us back into the pits and we finally got this thing apart. And then it was such a, an odd, it was such an odd part. There was no way to identify it. So again, I sent it to my friend at Jay Leno's garage and. He basically turned us off a new one and sent it over. So that, it's a really interesting group because there are modern cars that are like Formula One cars with three wheels. They're very fast. And then there are vintage cars like ours, but we're all sidecar racers. So with, there's a lot of camaraderie and people helping each other out, and you get on a race track and it's serious, but in the pits and everything out, it's fun. So I, I sent Robin a picture that he should show you of, I think it was us at Barber Motorsport. So, yeah. So we actually spent, uh, almost 10 years traveling coast to coast to 10 different racetracks.

Mabel: We only spent two full years,

Murrae: uh, CCAR racing track, two full years CCAR racing, but 10 years with me racing. And it was in really interesting because the, uh, um, I, I was working for a Harley Davidson dealer at the time doing motorcycle training. And the first guy I worked for, uh, he offered us a job and I turned him down because I said we had to schedule what we wanted to keep. He said, well, show me. And so we showed him the schedule and he said, well, I don't have any problem with this. Take a cell phone as long as you do your job. Uh, I'm good. And so that kind of set a precedent. So for all these years, I had a full-time job as a manager operating a program, but I was gone 10 weekends a year with her to go racing. And we put the dog in and we had a, a truck camper, a sliding camper and a trailer, and we would just take off and go and uh, you know, just one of those great things. But we've always been active and I think in. 2010, no, two thou 99. 1999 I was working for a emissions company, um, doing, uh, Dino tuning. And we got a call from a guy who did, do you know, Moto Discovery? I

Mabel: think you I did not. You did Moto dis You did, uh, poncho via motor tours before you, before you

Murrae: got the job at, uh, pioneer. Right. So it used to be Pancho via Moto Tours, but then it became, uh, Moto Discovery. So anyway, I,

Mabel: but he's a retired, so he decided to retire from full-time photography, which is what he was

Murrae: doing. Yeah. As a photojournalist. So anyway, long story shortly,

Mabel: just because everything got. Everything was changing with digital cameras and every year you'd have to buy a, a whole

Murrae: new set. Yeah. I liked film. So we get a call from the guy who runs this company saying, can you help us with a tour into Mexico? Which I said,

Mabel: sure. Well, it started off with, I took his, I'll let her go. I took, um, all women's tour moti, poncho Villa, all Women's Motive Tour to Mexico in 90 and 91, the first and the second all women's tour that he led. And at some point we were in San Antonio and I called Skip and put Murray on the phone and they talked to each other. And then I think a couple of years later, he'd never met Murray, but he said if I would be with Murray. And he was worth hiring, and

Murrae: that's how he got the job. Yeah. So anyway, long story short there, I, I went to Mexico on this tour and then we did, she and I did tours either together or I would do them separately, almost twice a year for almost 10 years in Mexico, going to Copper Canyon and that whole area where we take a group of people and take off across the border and take 'em on a ride for two weeks.

Mabel: We did a, a few tours over the course

Murrae: of 10 years. Yeah. And then, uh, for her decade birthdays, uh, one decade birthday, we went to New Zealand. Another decade we went to Australia.

Mabel: This last one, we went

Murrae: to Arkansas. We went to Arkansas, which is a fabulous place to ride. Uh, but we also did an exchange. We had some folks from Germany come over and. Go on a tour with us and then, uh, we went to Germany and went on a tour with them in Germany and Austria and northern Italy. And so, you know, we've been, and Spain. And Spain, oh, Spain was wonderful. So we basically got together and, uh, kind of have this same adventurous spirit. And so we've just, I think our, the next thing we'll do is, uh, I turned 75 this December, so we're thinking now we'll go back to Australia because we have friends there. We'll go back there maybe in November, December, January and do two or three weeks of riding there. And, uh, yeah, so, and I met Robin on Tribe Talk and we became friends on Tribe Talk. So, Now we've talked together, so we'll be bugging you all the time.

Mabel: When, uh, when Marie and I met, I was the only one who

Murrae: had a bike. Yes. I I went through a divorce. Wait, what? Yeah, she's the only, there's a period of time

Mabel: when we met 25 years ago. I've been riding for 35 years and I started riding by myself. I taught myself, I got a little Honda two 50 rebel and I taught myself to use the brakes because I heard that, um, most people crashed their bike in the first 24 hours because they forget to use the brakes. So, basically I, you know, went from the first gear to the second gear in an early Sunday morning. I was living in California and just taught myself how to ride. Yeah.

Maggie: What brought you to riding? Why were you interested? What got you interested in riding?

Mabel: Okay, so I never really thought about it until I had a boyfriend that wanted to go to Harley, and so I'm the one with credit. So we bought a, um, what was it? We bought a, an 81 sports tour, I think it was, and we split up and it was still a loan on it, and it was in my name. So I kept the bike smart. And yeah, at a certain point I met, um, this guy from Germany who said, well, you know, you should get a small bike and learned how to ride. And so I sold the Harley and I got the rebel. And you know, this, this guy was on vacation, so you know, he said at that point, 25% of the riders in Germany were women. And at that point in, in America, it was very small. It was, um, this was 19. 87, right? So I just got the bike and learned how to ride. And then in 88, so my next bike was in 88 Sports store. And um, this was in June. I didn't have a whole lot of bikes left. And I called Bartels down in Los Angeles and I said, do you have a bike? And he goes, yes. Um, but my salesman next to me is negotiating. And I said, well, let me give you a credit card. And I bought it signed unseen, and he said he had the great pleasure of going over to the other salesman. So, sorry, I sold the bike already. Oh. This was way before like calling up and buying bikes. Right. You know, with credit cards. Um, and then the following year I bought, I traded that in for a Heritage Soft Tail Classic that was owned by. Um, the Khalifa of the

Murrae: Carist, which a motorcycle

Mabel: gang in Los Los Angeles in Ox Oxnard, California. And it had like the eight hangers. And so I had that switched off and I had that bike for a long time. So that's the bike I had when I met

Murrae: Murray. Yeah. So it's sort of like eight years later, but I was riding that bike for quite a while, so it's sitting in the garage and I didn't let on for a while that I love motorcycles. We

Mabel: met in OC late October, right. And then, uh, so in March he starts coming

Murrae: out. So I said, oh, let's look at that thing in the garage and see what's going on. And we kind of got, uh, started that way as a couple, which was, uh, what was that? 90 what?

Mabel: 99? Well, 97. Well, we were together at like right from the start. It never, right. Like 10 days. Yes. We were together.

Murrae: Totally together. Yeah. That, uh, well it's, it's a great story. The, uh, Uh, I did a lot of work, uh, as a photojournalist. I did a lot of work for, uh, tribes in New Mexico and I've got some heritage, uh, going, uh, some native heritage. And at that time I had gotten a divorce and I was raising five teenagers by my myself, five children by myself. Whoa. And so, well, it was actually pretty cool. So it was

Mabel: interesting and I considered being with him with five kids, you know,

Maggie: I was gonna say, and

Mabel: whoa,

Murrae: it was, uh, Uh, a common friend we had, um, who's a native jeweler from Zuni. We have known each other a long time. She was having a baby and then was moving to Germany and was having a party. And so she invited us to the party. So anyway, when I show up, she was concerned about me and having five children to raise and no woman in my life. And so it was pretty funny because I showed up and there was, uh, a Hispanic woman, two Native American women. There was a variety of females at this bowling party and, and me. So, and then she walked in and,

Mabel: uh, I had bought her baby a gift and I needed to drop it off, but the baseball playoffs were on, so I was just gonna go there for a second and drop it off and go home.

Murrae: Yeah. So pretty much I said, who's that? And uh, she said, I'll go and bother. She broke up with a guy and, uh, just recently, so I walked up and introduced myself. I, I've never been very bashful and, uh, deer got kind of thick and we talked, uh, for,

Mabel: it was like there were molecules floating back and forth. It was that kind of chemical reaction.

Murrae: Yeah. And so it's like, okay, what's going on? So we, we talked and, and then, you know, the, the day was over. And so then we went out, I think the next Tuesday. And, uh, the next time we went out, you know, I said, look, I said, uh, I got all this stuff on my plate. I don't have time to. You know, court and date and do this stuff. Uh, but here's, here's a, you know, I'll never cheat on you. I'll never hit you. My boots will be under your bed. I'll treat you with respect and if you like, all that kind of stuff. I think we should just get married. But that was like 10, that was like 10 days.

Mabel: But his friend told him that I rode a motorcycle.

Murrae: Right. That was in

Mabel: there too, that he already knew that Right. From the time that we met. So, you know, figure that one out. Well, okay. That's enough of that.

Murrae: Yeah. The, the, the kind of, the continuum of that. When we got married, we went to Sturgis. No, he looked at my bike and then he rebuilts it. Yeah, I rebuilt her bike. It's like, okay, that works. So then we rode it to Sturgiss and a friend of mine up there who's Lakota, I said to him that we wanted to get married. So the long story short is we got married in a sweat lodge. On a, uh, a, uh, eagle dancing area that's a sacred area by a hao haka medicine man. So that's how we got

Mabel: married. But that morning we were packing the bike and I, um, a bungee corlett loose and hit me up here. And I had two black circles under

Murrae: my eyes. Yeah. She had two black eyes. So during the ceremony he warned us about fighting fair when we were upset.

Mabel: Oh my goodness. How long has,

Murrae: so it's just, we, we've had a really interesting time and it's all been around motorcycles and, uh, not all, but Well, mostly, yeah. I mean, I, uh, I started riding, I think I was 11. My dad got me a. Got a moped that I rode around the yard and then, uh, went through a series of British and Japanese bikes and got a Harley in a box and rebuilt that. And yeah, just, it just had done that kind of stuff forever.

Mabel: I was not afraid of being on a motorcycle because I rode bicycle in New York City from the time I was like eight years old, so, you know. Yeah.

Maggie: I, that traffic is, uh, just as dangerous

Mabel: as Right. So you learn how to, and this is before everyone was so protective over their kids that they wouldn't let them go out by themselves or ride on the street. So, and this was during the time when the diesel fumes, the diesel blacked us, would come out of the buses while you were following them, I think. Yeah.

Maggie: So, Probably also before bicycle lanes, you know, dedicated bicycle lanes were a thing.

Mabel: In fact, it, it really wasn't considered, um, fashionable for a girl to ride a bicycle back then. Yeah. Oh, whoa, whoa, whoa. What we're, we're talking, um, the, the, the late fifties and the sixties and, um, I mean, girls avoided gym in high school if they could. Yeah. This is a whole different era. This is before being athletic was what everyone

Murrae: wanted to be. When she was like years old, she would get on the subway with her little brother and go 11 or 11, and she would go into the city on the subway, just the two of them. And I think you went to the world's Fair.

Mabel: Took into the world 64, 65 World's Fair. You had to be 12 years old to go in by yourself. So my mom was working and she let me take my three year old brother into the world's fair. Nobody said anything. You know, today you would be considered child abuse. You learn how to do things if you could do things on your own when you're a kid and you become much more independent. Yeah. And I would wander around the city by myself when I was 11. I lived in the, in Queens, was just more suburban. And I would go into Manhattan, walk around everywhere. Yeah. Take the subway back home and bus back home. Now you know, they, someone would grab you and say, you know, where's your mother? Right?

Murrae: Yeah. But need to say she's adventurous. And that's kind of what I like is people who are adventurous and willing to wrap their heads in their arms around new things and try new things and,

Mabel: well, it's not something that my mom said, okay, you can go now cuz you're old enough. It was more like my brother, who is 11 months older than me. And I were taking the bus to go return something down in Main Street. Flushing, which Flushing was known, was not the Chinese city it is now. Um, and so I get on the bus and my brother stays back and says, goodbye. You're on your own. I said, okay, I'm gonna do it. But, so it's always you, you do something the first time by accident and now you can have permission.

Maggie: It sounds like it served you

Murrae: well. Yeah. Yeah. And I, I got into riding because my dad rode and, uh, you know, rode all of his life. And, uh, uh, at a certain point when she mentioned that I did, uh, photojournalism, when I went to digital cameras, I decided to do something else. I'm one of those people that if I decided to stop doing something, I simply stop and go do something else. And, uh,

Mabel: I got, he's the kind of person where people talk to him and, yeah, I think you can do this job. I don't, and he, they

Murrae: offer him a job. Yes. I went to work for a Harley dealer and worked for him. You went to work

Mabel: for Clean Air to do, to, uh, develop a testing room for them and you have no degrees. Um, just, just lifelong

Murrae: experience. Yeah. I, I, I, I'm an engineer by osmosis. My, my father had, uh, three engineer, three engineering degrees and seven union cards, and my grandfather had a mechanical engineering degree. It was a machine. I just grew up around all that stuff. So, and, uh, when I was, uh,

Mabel: want our life story on

Murrae: podcast Oh, that's okay. They'll edit. So when I was, they're kinda a private person, so when I was four, my grandfather bought me two short little stubby screwdrivers. One was a flat and one was a Phillips. And I was so attached to 'em. My mother had to sew pockets on the sheets of my bed, so when I went to bed, I could put the two screwdrivers in the pockets and not let them, let them get very far away. So I've been a motorhead forever.

Maggie: So while other kids had the security blankets or the teddy bear, you had a, you had a screwdriver and a Phillips.

Murrae: Yep. Yes. Yep. I also had a lamb chop, which was, I don't know if you know what that is. It was, I do, yeah. I had a, I had a lamb chop, I had a crush on, I forget her name now, but Sherry something, or Sherry something who did the puppet lamb chop. Mm-hmm.

Mabel: So, yeah.

Maggie: Are you two still both doing the sar chi racing or not? Not as much lately,

Mabel: no. Um, when he got sick, uh, we really, and then covid. We really couldn't do it. He went through chemo and stem cell transplant and bone marriage transplant. Yeah. And then covid hit and so he was immunocompromised, so we couldn't do that.

Murrae: And um, it's all okay now

Mabel: it's, it, it's okay now, but, um, the sidecar is, is pretty much toast. Yeah. Wonder We'd have to do a lot of work on it. And then we sold the trailer that we were using to take it to the races and now we have a toy hauler and we really don't have room for the sidecar. And there's other things we wanted

Murrae: to Yeah, yeah. We had two years of racing and we got, uh, two national number, first place, number one plates. And, um, I'm thinking about going back. I have a, a 50 year old Ducati three 50 GP bike that I've been racing about going back to racing in. Just cuz it's fun.

Mabel: Otherwise, I mean, he's picked up other things since retirement, which is doing quality assurance visits for Harley and they want him to do a lot this year and we don't really have the time. Yeah. But the quality assurance visits allow us to ride places and

Murrae: get paid. Yeah. Pays for our traveling. You know, it's like what you guys do is perfect, you know, having an RV and some bikes and traveling around and, and doing stuff online and the newsletter that you do and the podcast and all that's perfect. It's like perfect for, I know Robin really enjoys it and, uh, so yeah. And so we're kind of in that same mode, you know, what can we do? How do we spend, how do we wanna spend the rest of our time? Yeah. You know, and now we're retired and, you know, and quite frankly when you get, uh, some kind of serious illness that you recover from, It changes your perspective on how you wanna spend time.

Maggie: Absolutely. I was listening to a podcast and she went through a thought experiment where she was talking about, okay, if I knew that I only had one year left to live for whatever reason, what would I start doing more of? Or what would I stop doing more of? And like, she had like five questions. She kind of went through all based around, if you only had one, you're left to live it. I thought that was an interesting thought experiment. And it sounds like you kind of came to that in a more realistic way.

Murrae: Yep. It's one of those things where, you know, you say, well, what can I do here? I just have to, you know, go through this and see what happens. But early on we made, uh, we talked about it. We made the decision that if it went south really quick, we were just gonna sell everything and spend the rest of whatever time we had together. Doing exactly what we wanted to do, which was probably going anywhere in the world we could in riding motorcycles and having experiences.

Mabel: Well, well, he more or less has more of a bucket list than I do. I've never really had a bucket list. I've always just fallen into something. It's kind of like I started rock climbing because a girlfriend said, Hey, let's go try this. Or someone else says, Hey, let's go try that. And it, I just fall into things

Murrae: kind of the same here. Yeah. Yeah.

Mabel: I mean, so, so not having a bucket list, you know, if something happened tomorrow,

Murrae: I'm fine. Yeah, same. Same here. I, I told my kids, I tell my friends, I said, you know, don't wait to chase your bucket list. I said, I started on mine when I was like 40, and I've been working on it consistently ever since. And you know, I don't come from money or anything. I've just been. Really had these incredible opportunities presented to me where I've said, okay, sure, yeah, I'll, I'll go do that. I'll get that a shot, see what happens. And, you know, years later I can say, geez, what a great life. And the interesting thing is, it's all so much of it, so much of the joy and the fun, uh, came out of motorcycling in general. The people you meet and the places you go and you know, it, it's like we would ride to Mexico and we'd ride into a little town and the kids would just swarm around the bikes and I carried a Polaroid camera and I take pictures of kids on the bike and give them Polaroids and stuff. And, you know, just that kind of stuff. It's like, how, how do you, how, how can you convince people to. You know, put down what they're doing and go have those kinds of experiences because they, they enrich you so much.

Mabel: Oh, back in 19 and 91, going into Mexico, as with an all women's tour, they were astounded. They, they, the Mexicans, they were astounded. All of a sudden it's like, oh my god, it's women

Murrae: motorcycles.

Maggie: How many riders were

Mabel: in the group? I think the first one was 15, the second one might have been 12. But there were these, these two, um, ladies from, I think it was Wisconsin, and they were on these Honda Rebel four 50 s, which was the smallest bike. All the other women had big bikes and they literally rode the shocks off the bikes. We got across the border. The shock had fallen off. Were having so much fun. It was great. It was a lot of fun riding with all these women.

Maggie: That sounds amazing. These were like two weeks long. These trips into Mexico,

Mabel: um, probably weren't that long because Skip thought we couldn't handle it right at first. At first. So it was like six days, and I think the second one was like nine

Murrae: days or something. You kind of ran him into the ground.

Mabel: Well, the second trip he had this Marine, um, as a follow. He led both tours and they had this Marine as a follow and he, he gets on sabotaging little things on the bike so that he could help us. But, um, no, all these women rode down to the tour. They didn't trailer there, they rode. Yeah. And they've they were from all over the country. Oh yeah. On the second tour coming home. Um, I hit rain all the way, and then from Sakura back from Sakura back, I hit rain and then I, in coming into Santa Fe, I hit snow and the next morning it was that much. What was that like? Not a foot of snow. Yeah, foot and a half of snow on my, my seat. It was cold. I didn't have really good gear. Then basically Harley was only selling gear that they had rebranded from Hein Geka. There, there was no specific, specific women's gear. I had gone to Germany and I had, um, a custom leather,

Murrae: uh, yeah. She was like a ninja. She had this leather suit and then wore a scarf in a mask, so you could just see her eyes,

Mabel: but you couldn't, you couldn't find women's gear. Yeah. You could not find women's gear.

Murrae: Yeah. It's, it's still, yeah, it's gotten better in the last five years I think.

Mabel: I've always gotten better in the last 10 or 15. Yeah,

Maggie: it's gotten better. Yeah. Some might argue that the colors that you'll see are always like, uh, turquoise or pink. Even when I go into a store, like I've been looking for gauntlet gloves and I have to order them. I can never find them, you know, just in a

Mabel: store. Oh yeah. You have to order them. Well, there was no ordering online back then. Yeah. Um, I, I got like, well I was living in Oxnard, so Weeder was making electrics back then, and I went into Ojai and I. I got seconds right from Weeder. I got gloves and I got a vest. I mean it was still made for men, but you know, my hands are a women's glove size large. So I was able to fit into a men's glove. The only part pro problem is the palm area cuz that's too big. Um, but I found some inexpensive ga the gloves, which I don't think I should main brands here, but I could tell you later. Um, o online that, um, fit really well. Yeah. Um, which I use for the sidecar cuz I need to have something that I could really grip cuz you're hanging on all the time, so you wanna make sure that your gloves, you have good

Murrae: gloves. Yeah. There's a reason they call the passenger the monkey because when you're the driver you're basically steering and exhilarating and breaking because it's not like a regular motorcycle where you can move all over the place. Yeah. You're just kind of. Planted and you're operating this thing where,

Mabel: so I'm really draped over the back or

Murrae: hanging off the side. Yeah. Her job was to keep the car on the ground. Mm-hmm. Because parts of it raise up when you turn and because it's, you know, it's a triangle and, uh, so she was all over the place. She would just scramble up to the front and over the back and hang off the side. And

Mabel: that's why it suited me because being athletic and being able to hang off things and not being, not having no fear it made, it is like, yeah, I can be a sidecar monkey. That would, that sounds like so much

Murrae: fun. Yeah. Paul we're like, you guys, you, you both ride and so you, you know, that's, uh, you know, when Robin and I taught together last week, we had a great time. You know, just that, just that attitude of being. Happy and being somewhere and doing something you enjoy and being alive and, you know, passing on something to someone else and sharing some information and some knowledge. Just, it's just such a great thing.

Mabel: Well, he's the one who pulls me into teaching as well, because he was running from

Murrae: women. Yeah. I said, I, I need some women, women and instructors. I, it, it's a bunch of old guys. Right. We need some women. Cause, cause poor women are riding and so we need instructors that they can relate

Mabel: to, you know, so when they see this old Chinese woman teaching them, it's like, okay, I can write too if she can. No. And I've never been disrespected actually. Yeah, on the range when I'm teaching. Not at all. Well, she, I think the younger people are, are more inclined to accept, um, women and older women teaching them

Murrae: how to ride. Yeah. Well, she won't admit it, but she's better than a majority of the male writers that I know. That's just his opinion, you know? Well, I, I, I think women in general are safer. Uh, there's a higher sense of self-preservation. Uh, the guy as guys, we have the hold my beer and watch this gene. And, uh, women generally don't have that, that I know of. And so it, it's, it, it's, most women. Most women. But it's interesting to see her on the range because we teach together a lot and it's always, uh, this really incredible balance of communication and stuff, and the stuff that she focuses on and picks up on with students. Then I may not, I'm, I'm focusing on something else. And so the students really get a lot out

Mabel: of it. Well, I understand you

Maggie: teach as well. I do, and I do enjoy having, I think the students benefit from having the two coaches for the very reason, you know, that you mentioned is you have two different personalities. Usually one picks up on some gaps that the other one doesn't see, but then the other one notices things and you know, sure. A solo coach can handle eight students, but it's just a nice, I think it's a really nice balance and experience overall when you have two mm-hmm. People there. Mm-hmm. If, if it's

Mabel: possible, it's a, also, if you have a woman and a man,

Maggie: Yeah, I think that's also a great balance and I know that there's always a short of, of coaches and, uh, we, there's always a call, especially for some more female coaches, and I think we also need younger coaches, so, yeah. Oh, that's a,

Mabel: we need younger coaches here in New Mexico, I think. Everywhere. Well, we had, um, they've, they've retired now, but it was a husband and wife team up in Taos, and, and he was the metal medical director at the hospital and he taught Oh, wow. Motorcycle riding. Yeah. So, um,

Murrae: it's a good thing. Yeah. Yeah. It is just interesting to think about the things that I, and how motorcycling has been the most consistent thing over the entirety of my life. Besides raising children. Yeah. Besides raising children, but, uh, Do your children ride? Uh, let's see. 1, 2, 3. Three of them are active riders and I four have motorcycle licenses. Four have motorcycle licenses.

Mabel: No. Four. Well, yeah, but Alicia never wrote. Yeah. She ended

Murrae: up having a baby. Yeah. So, uh, yeah. And now the, the oldest daughter's, three boys and two girls. Now the oldest daughter of the two girls, her kids are going to go to dirt bike school. Fun. Yeah. She likes motorcycles and thinks it would be good for her kids.

Maggie: That's great. I, I'm always curious when people have children or kids that do ride or don't ride. I'm always curious about why some do, some don't. Uh, we have a number of friends since kids don't ride, so I'm always curious

Mabel: about that. I think kids need to be riding bicycles everywhere. Yeah. On their own.

Murrae: Well, in New Mexico, we live near, uh, we call 'em Aroyo and a lot of places are called washes, but we were like a half a block from an Aroyo, which is an open kind of area. And, uh, I picked up a Yamaha 80 dirt bike that all of the kids learned how to ride on in the Aroyo, and they, you know, rode motocross style in the Aroyo. And then when they outgrew that, I gave it to another family. So that this motorcycle got passed around to three or four families that where the kids learned how to ride.

Mabel: Well, I mean, that gives me a thought, why, you know, kids are doing soccer, they're doing, you know, T-ball, they're doing all that stuff. Why not do a group of kids doing bicycle riding?

Murrae: Yeah, yeah. Or a motorcycle,

Mabel: four or five kids together instead of, you know, do, do groups of team. Team both, you know, bicycle riding. Yeah. Get them on the streets. Why not? With an adult and just following and learning how to ride safely on the street. It's a start from there. You start from there, and then when they get older, you can put 'em on a motorcycle.

Maggie: Your first bicycle ride, that's your first sort of experience of freedom. You know, where you can get a little speed under you and get a distance and you start to explore. And I grew up riding bicycles and we rode around neighborhoods un chaperoned, you know, and no helmets, nothing. Uh, when I lived in California, none of that.

Mabel: Yeah, yeah. Right. But then, you know, you like teams. You create friends in a team, you create friends with bicycle. It used to be everybody in the neighborhood at bicycle, you know, they'd call everybody, let's go for a ride, you know? Yeah. But now everything's so spread out or I don't, you don't know what the kids are, so you need to form a group in order to ride well and that, but that would help them, you know, with camaraderie

Murrae: and everything else. Well, and the motorcycle thing was early, because I know in the fifties, uh, we all took close pins and put plane cards. On the, on the front fork of the motorcycle. So the spokes would turn and make a motor noise. And the faster you went, the, the faster the motor noise went. So we were already on motorcycles when we were eight, nine years old.

Mabel: You know, it was, it just sort of reminds me, my parents would not buy me a bicycle cause they felt that wasn't, uh, a girly thing to do. So I would ride my brother's bicycle all the time.

Maggie: They let you ride his bicycle or they didn't know you were

Mabel: riding his bicycle? They me ride his bicycle, but they would not get me a bicycle for

Murrae: myself. For yourself?

Mabel: Yeah.

Maggie: Wow, that's so interesting. I, one of our recent newsletters, it was, you know, it was Women's Month and I wrote about, I was like, okay, so how did, I was just kind of looking around for topics and that's when I learned about how, uh, the suffrage movement was kind of linked to women first starting to ride bicycles, but, you know, so it kind of became linked together and how women had to really fight to do it, but it was their first time they could be independent and they got some freedom. And then, but those, you know, they wore, the clothes that they wore back then was horrendous. And so some women were smart about it. They started stitching the skirts and just wearing those petty coats, which was totally unsightly and unseemly. So people would throw stuff at them. But, you know, the, the, just the things that we take for granted now that women were fighting just to even ride a bicycle is, that's interesting.

Mabel: If you even take that a little further back. Women only rode side saddle for a specific reason. Yeah. Put them on a bicycle, which is really totally, you know, yeah. Destroyed reason. So

Maggie: the values, what is between that woman's legs? Tell me a little bit more about some of these, uh, other trips. So you've, you've gone to Australia, New Zealand, you've ridden Mexico, you've went to, what are some of the more memorable, like long distance tours you've done

Mabel: together in, uh, the US and Canada? We went, um, from, So there's a group, we used to have Bule motorcycles, and there was a bu, a Bule group from Colorado and some from me, New Mexico. But these are a few, four, five people. Yeah, a handful. A handful. And also one that came over from, from England, England, England. And so they planned a trip and we followed along. It's like this, this'll be fun. And we went from New Mexico up through Utah, through Idaho, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, Washington, Washington Peninsula, the Olympic Peninsula took the ferry over to Vancouver Island, up Vancouver Island from the tip of Vancouver Island. We took the longer ferry through the inside passage up to Prince Rupert, across Prince Rupert, and right in the middle of, um, that British Columbia area. I found a Chinese guy that rode Harley's that spoke my dialect, which was just really interesting. Wow. And even you in a hotel, in a restaurant in the middle of, well, all lumber.

Murrae: It was all lumbering there. Yeah.

Mabel: Lumbering and money. I thought that was really crazy. And then we went across to, um, Jasper, down to Dam, to Glacier, to Yellowstone, and then back to, um, New Mexico in 17 days, 5,100 miles. Wow. With some days we didn't, and it was so beautiful. We went up the tram, um, I can't remember what the mountain was, but to the top, and you could hike even further, but I was wearing flip flops and there was snow in sections. She hikes. I said, I'm all the way up here. I'm gonna go in flip flops because I've been to Vietnam. And that's what they wear all everywhere. Hiked up to the top in like flip rocks. Yeah. And that was, that was such a beautiful trip. I mean, we couldn't, oh, we went to Glacier Yellowstone, but we couldn't do the, going to the Sun Highway cause it wasn't open yet. This was in mid-June. Um, but we did the clockwise route and we didn't have any rain except for a couple of hours. And I'd looked at the weather. If we had done counterclockwise, we would've hit rain along the entire trip. Yeah. So that was a lucky trip. It was beautiful. It was so much fun. And in Canada, they, um, oh, tell her about the

Murrae: grizzly. Oh yeah. In, can we, we see all these people in Canada, they cut the roads back because of the wildlife. So it's cut back, you know, a hundred feet or 200 feet. And, uh, we saw people stopped by a pull off by a pull off. And we pull off and get off and we look and hear down this, this little hill and out just a little bit. There's a grizzly bear taking a nap and people are taking pictures and making noise and

Mabel: not really making noise. Well, a little bit. Our friend Bob decided

Murrae: to go over there and so our friend Bob goes over, he's a big guy and he yells and he goes like this and slaps his helmet at two or

Mabel: five times. Now that Grizzly could've come up in like

Murrae: two seconds, right? And so the, yeah, the Grizz grizzly puts it head up and looks at us and, and I said, Hey guys, time to leave or we're gonna end up, somebody's gonna be a leather chew toy here. And, uh, you know, off we went.

Mabel: No, it's a srr. He woke, a squirrel started running, right, and then he took off after and he took off rr the squirrels. So the squirrel saved us.

Murrae: Yeah. Yeah. Oh wow. RR um, No, it, it's, we've had some adventures. Uh, when we went to, um, I was just, oh, when we went to New Zealand, it's great. We decided to, to go to New Zealand. I was a service manager at a shop, at a motorcycle shop, and, uh, she said, we have to figure this out, this not a whole lot on the internet. And so I'm there one morning at seven 30 and the owner calls me and, uh, he says, uh, that there's some guy on the phone calling you from New Zealand?

Mabel: No, no. Before this you had met

Murrae: the uncle. Oh yeah. The license. His uncle, his uncle walked in. He wanted a motorcycle license plate because that's how he chronicled the trips that he took around the world is he collect license plates. So we start to talk. And, uh,

Mabel: yeah, this

Murrae: is 2002. Yeah. He has a, a nephew who rides motorcycles. So we got, I get a phone number and email. We email back and forth. He puts me in touch with the guy who rents motorcycles. And I kept trying to track this guy down because I wanted to rent some bikes and get deposits and stuff. And so seven 30 in the morning, the boss yells back and he goes, it's a guy from New Zealand on the phone, wants to talk to you. And I said, okay. So I picked up the phone and it was a motocross or from France who lived? No, he is from Switzerland. In Switzerland. Lived on the south island, and uh, now he was in the north, north

Mabel: island, 45 minutes south

Murrae: of Aqua Northland. Yeah. And he, and he calls up and he goes, well, Are you guys coming? And I said, yeah, I've been trying to figure out here for weeks. How many, do you want a credit card or something? Pay you credit card. What do you want? He goes, are you coming for sure? And I said, yeah, we have our tickets. We're ready to go. He goes, bring cash. I'll meet you at the airport. And he goes, we don't believe in banks, so we just want cash. He's from Switzerland, he was from Switzerland and motocross, so he meant medicine. He

Mabel: had a guy meet us at the airport. He drove us 45 minutes down to

Murrae: where he is at. Right? So we stash our stuff, we get our bikes, and we do our trip and we come back and we turn everything in. And

Mabel: we didn't, um, we sort of had, what I did was I looked up a tour and I said, okay, this kind of route would be good. So yeah, that's what we, we did our own self guiding. We didn't have any reservations anymore. Yeah, we

Murrae: just flew except for the first night. The beach. Yeah. So we go to turn the motorcycles in. And uh, he goes, are you guys are from New Mexico? And I said, yeah, we're from Santa Fe. And he gets this box and he hands Mabel this box and he said, I have a brother who lives in Santa Fe. Would you take this and give this to him? And so there was this whole kind of interesting connection.

Mabel: Uh, and a few years ago, uh, pre Covid, um, he came to visit his brother. Yeah. And we all met up. Yeah. This is like, oh, that's so awesome. Like 15 years after. Right. We had been to New Zealand, he remembered us

Murrae: when I had a former brother-in-law that lived on the cor, which is the northern part of the north island of New Zealand. I guess you can see. No, it's sort of west. Yeah. You can see Barrier Reef from there. And so we rode some, I forget how many miles it was on gravel to get there, to go out and see him, and through a stream, which I'd never told. Well, there was a, a stream that we had to ride through that she'd never done before. And, and I said, well, just don't stop. Hold

Mabel: us, Rob. Well, there was a cattle, there was a

Murrae: grading down there. Yeah. So I said, don't stop, keep going, going

Mabel: in. I hit the grading, coming back out. I missed the grading, and I just,

Murrae: just kept going. So the, we got up there and, and they have, uh, they raised, uh, uh,

Mabel: they knew, they learned how to farm oysters. Farm oysters. Oh, wow. We had

Murrae: fresh oysters. They were doing olives and stuff like that. They were, uh, avocados. Avocados.

Mabel: And we had brought, um, some bottled salsa

Murrae: Right. From New

Mabel: Mexico. From New Mexico. So

Murrae: they were just, they were just, so the, the next morning we get up and there's a windstorm. And we're trying to get out of there and literally blowing everything. The chickens were being blown across the yard. They

Mabel: were rolling down the yard. Oh my gosh. That was so funny. It was funny. No, we've had a lot of really, it's travel. That's why I said I just want to travel and do vacations. Um, the experience on a motorcycle is

Murrae: fantastic. Yeah, it's nothing

Mabel: like it. And, and you're so open. People wanna come talk to you, especially if you're a couple. Yeah. I did travel. Once with another woman. Um, and then nobody wanted to talk to us. Right. Um, this was what was, what

Murrae: year was this? When, who, who was

Mabel: it? Was it year? It was Carol. Carol. Oh, okay. So this was probably in the, um, middle nineties. And so I think people sort of found that strange. The only person that, this is amazing, we were in a gas station in Salt Lake City and this, um, guy of Indian, Indian from India descent comes in, drives in, asks us if we need help. And I thought that was fantastic. I said, oh, no, thank you so much. Um, but that was the only person that really kind of talked to us. Yeah. I, I think they found two women. Strange. Maybe they thought they were whatever. Um, I did go, we did go to Great Salt Lake and I started walking in. Along the edge. It looked, the crust looked like it was solid. I started sinking in up to my knees. Oh. Oh. Yeah. So I remembered my physics. So it's kind of like spread the weight. So I crawled out and I was able to pull out, pull myself out of the sort of quick sand.

Murrae: Yeah. Um, well, and, and just going somewhere and getting lost and finding something. Yeah. That's always fun. That's so much

Mabel: fun. And the people, yeah. Other motorcycle riders. Um, just yesterday we were talking to one that we went out to the Tao Court Bridge with my brother and sister-in-law just driving. And it was a guy there that had Maryland Place and we started talking to him. Yeah. It's, it, it, it's, it's such an easy. Introduction that is non-threatening, which is what I like

Murrae: being on the motorcycle. Well, I, uh, there there's a universality to it where it sort of, it sort of doesn't make any difference who you are or what you do if you're on a motorcycle and you're traveling. There's that comradery that exists. And even though you might only know each other for a couple of hours or a couple of days, it's like all those things that might make a difference back in the quote unquote real world, just don't

Mabel: count. I mean, most car people don't do that. When would, when have you driven a, you know, a sedan and park next to a sedan and people start talking? Yeah.

Maggie: I don't see that ex at all in the car culture, except for the people that like to race on the street racing that circuit Murray, that was a gem, what you just said. About how nice it is and how open it is and how that's sort of a, it levels the field, even if it's just for a few hours to, you know, for people to talk to each

Murrae: other. Sure. Well, Eric Buell, we've known him for, uh, a long time, and, uh, he's the guy that did the motorcycles. And, um, he said to me once he goes, you know, he goes, if everybody would just ride motorcycles, the world would be a totally better place. And I, it's at, it's based on that same thought. Yeah,

Mabel: because you're not, you're not wearing

Murrae: an armor. Right? Yeah. And it's like going to the races and, and, and racing, it's like we're real competitive, but when the racing's done, it's time to drink beer, tell stories, work on your bikes, help each other out. And, uh, it's, it's just a, a whole different approach to things I think.

Maggie: Yeah. This has been so much fun hearing about all of your adventures. I want to ask each of you one last question, and it's the same question. What is your riding

Murrae: obsession? Oh, geez. It's, it's mostly travel and the racing. Even doing the racing that was also travel because it was coast to coast, and so we met new people and had these, I think it's traveling together. Yeah. We, we, we don't do groups. Uh, or we have small groups of, of friends, people that we've known a long time, but most of the time when she and I travel, we are by ourselves and we'll, we'll pick a place and do the research. And, uh, like when we went to Spain, uh, we went with a couple of friends, but it was a self-guided tour where, They set the hotels and how we got to and from, and everything was totally up to us. And so we had all these adventures together. Uh, we've

Mabel: enjoyed the tours though. We've

Murrae: enjoyed the tours. When we let the tours. Yeah. Or

Mabel: just, I think people enjoyed tours. Motorcycle. They don't know because they, they make friends. Sure. But at this stage, we, well, it also has to do with money. It's a lot cheaper to do your own tour.

Murrae: Yeah. Um, and we led a tour with some Brits. And, uh,

Mabel: no. You, they, you led a tour with Brits and then they decided to come back from Sturgiss

Murrae: cause they liked you so much. Yeah, they came back. We had such a good time. They, they decided to come back and she and I took 'em to Sturgiss and around and yeah, just stuff like that. It's just, you know, I, I found, uh, a soulmate and somebody who is, is, I think it's important in marriage that, uh, to truly have a partner in terms of somebody that you can share with, that you can share with and depend on and have these experiences with. Um, because the other thing, which

Mabel: is there's a lot of guys out there would feel really lucky if their wife would ride with them. Yeah. When, whether on the back or on their own bike. Yeah.

Murrae: When in the, the medical stuff that I went through, the. The treatment and a bone marrow transplant. She essentially was my advocate the whole time. And it really is as responsible for my recovery as any of the medical people, you know, and that's a quality that's rare to find that there's that kind of commitment and that kind of

Mabel: love. Do you find people that recover sooner, faster have, um,

Murrae: an advocate?

Mabel: Yeah, so I, I mean, having been in the hospitals and seeing people that are lying there on their own as opposed to people who are there all day, every day makes a huge

Murrae: difference. You know, I think if I have an obsession, it's her.

Maggie: Yeah. The best answers so far, I asked that question to every podcast guest, Marie, you just, uh, you just topped

Murrae: everyone. What better time can you have than exploring the world, doing something you love with someone you love so much? Understanding this life on this planet, it doesn't get much better than that.

Robin: Awesome. Yeah. He and Mabel Sidecar, legit racing Armor, I believe. She's the monkey. Like talk about a romance. It'd

Piper: be a little bit more romantic if he were in the side car

Travis: or if there was a rain condom.

Robin: I'm gonna find that video for you

Tim: right now. Do they make those for two?

Travis: Ooh, like a two, like a two person sleeping bag. Yeah, like a human caterpillar side car, rain gear.

Robin: Tim, you're unwell. Yeah. Video or it didn't happen. So now you get to see our longtime ad of the, uh, rainwear, which I probably should have edited for the better, but I did my best. Where'd you, where'd you, yeah, where'd you put it? It's on baseball's for later. Oh. We'll put it in the Zoom chatt. Why do you want me to put it in the Z? We're gonna watch a z, we're gonna watch one of our advert. We're gonna watch an advertisement from t r o while we do a podcast. Oh, well, whatever. Stick around after these messages, folks. 20 minutes of years of belt rain suit.

Travis: All right. Anyway, so we have a list of questions.

Robin: We have a listener question if I can find it. It's about seats. Yep.

Tim: Yeah.

Travis: He has a concourse 14 seat.

Robin: Did you guys have it,

Travis: Travis? I just remember it cuz you sent it earlier. Um, so read it. Yeah, I, well I have it in front of me. Um, it was someone that was asking about seats for a concourse 14.

Robin: That's a not, no, we, we need this, we need this. Uh, yeah. Concourse,

Tim: I think I can

Travis: find this. Yes. Now. And it looked like, so there's, I mean there's basically three off the shelf options. Sergeant Settleman and Corbin. Of course the Corbin, you can customize them. Um, either way you look in like five to $600.

Robin: And that's kind of what I told him that he should be weary of is going with a pre-manufactured quote, custom seat. Yeah. I do like the Corbin

Tim: seats. Um, I had one on the Vrom 1000 that was really comfortable. That was the first time I ever had one. Yeah, they're kind of

Travis: ugly, but they are hard. But they're, they're,

Robin: yeah, they're, why, why not have 'em just go to somebody who can actually tailor a seat?

Travis: Well, and that, that's the other option, right, is I don't know, it didn't say where he lived, but, um, you know, you can go to an upholsterer or get on a form and see if you live near a, a bigger city, um, and see if someone's willing to do a custom seat for you. Yes. Yeah. But I mean, just bear in. I have

Tim: not had good luck with that route. If

Travis: you go Well, you have to find someone that does motorcycle seats. Like I have a dude.

Tim: Yes. Yeah,

Piper: I have a dude. Oh yeah. You guys wanna really, you wanna look

Robin: him up? Yeah. What's, what, what's his name? What's his url? He'll connect the dots here. This is great.

Piper: Sure. Um, his name is Steve Gowing and he's in, uh, Fort Collins, Colorado. He has been doing it, it's Gowing tailored Motorcycle Creations, and he has been in business for a really long time. And what's really cool about Steve is that, um, you can bring your motorcycle. To his house. He will have you sit on it and then he'll kind of custom build a seat around your booty. Nice, nice. He has you. Yeah. He'll, he just actually shaved off a couple of inches on my, a couple of my TD dub seats for my shorter rider. And, um, it was, I think I got two seats done for 200 bucks. It was cr I mean, it was like, oh, that is crazy. It was really, was a really, it was so cheap and he turned it around in three days. He's awesome. Like I have seen some of the coolest seats ever. He did this like white custom tons of like stitching. Beautiful thing on my friend's Harley. He's amazing.

Robin: I remember the specifics of the question he was talking about, like he was, his thing was that he would, he would adjust himself. It's a, it's a problem when your junk gets all tied in the wrong spot. So he would for sure if he stood up, sat back down, everything would be like, he didn't like how things were nestled, he would run into the tank.

Travis: It was all just uncomfortable. Yeah. It was like pushing him forward too much.

Robin: Yeah. He was sliding forward at an angle too much and I think that, um, I think Piper just nailed it. Like basically find the guy that does the custom job and build off of that. So ground's covered. Yeah, he's got

Tim: really good looking work on here. It's

Piper: cr He is amazing.

Robin: How do you spell his name again?

Piper: Steve Gowing. G o w i N g.

Robin: Steve Gowing.

Piper: His website is steve

Robin: Perfect. We should, uh, we should find out if he can do like, uh, zoom meetings. Do zoom meeting, uh, tailoring. We can send a seat pan and just be like, he's got some of these

Tim: on here that remind me of the Russell Daylong seat with the butt wings. You ever seen those? They're just horribly ugly. But I've heard they're comfortable.

Travis: Yeah. They have like butt wings. Yeah. Here we go. Uh, I ride a 2013 stock Kawasaki C 14 4, 24 miles. Connie of aftermarket C is not angle my lower extremities toward the tank. I'm an adjusted flat angle. I'm

Piper: impressed that he's fitting forward in his feet enough to squish his junk.

Travis: Yeah. Well the seat, well he is saying the seat push, he the seat pushes him forward.

Robin: Yeah. Nuts on the tank is not necessarily a good thing. It's the

Tim: attack

Robin: position. I like to have sticky at the front, sticky at the back and then have something that lets me use body English on the bike where I'm actually seated. So,

Travis: so I mean, I'm not sure about the off the shelf. So definitely corbins tend to kind of lock you in more toward the back. Um, it's hard to tell. Looking at the sergeant and the settlement, they look like they would be flatter, but. We'd have to get maybe on a forum and see what the reviews are like. And then obviously a custom job would be whatever you want it to be. He also had a question, the fly shield is too short for me.

Robin: That's you all day. You know the answer to that one, dirty air is the worst, but I don't know that he's getting dirty air. I think he feels like he's supposed to be in a completely turbulent free environment and that's just not how it works.

Travis: Yeah, I mean there's all sorts of, I mean, I'm sure yeah, FGE, Puig, however you say, it makes a tall screen, national cycle. Gv Go on Revzilla. Yeah. And you

Tim: can also get the little windshield extensions. Oh yeah.

Travis: Like the lemon lip. A little clip on guys like that. Yeah. Yep. And some guys have good luck with those.

Robin: Or get a smaller windscreen that's splayed. So it's got a center seam that's sort of like a split window that creates less turbulence cuz the air end's going around you instead of trying to get it up and over you. Travis has suffered through that for years. And Tim, you had it too at one point I think with a bike. Yes,

Tim: I got rid of a motorcycle because of that. Yep.

Travis: I just want clean air on my helmet and my helmet cuts to the air fine. So, um, that, that always works better for me. But there is, so, you know, just go on Revzilla. Uh, like I said, there's a couple of brands. Yeah.

Tim: There's also the V stream.

Travis: What did I have on the BMW a, um, cerebellum.

Robin: That thing was eight feet tall.

Travis: Yeah. But it was great. It was a cerebellum. I dunno if they make one for the Connie, but it was like one of the, it was like one of the only people who made windscreens for that weird ass bike. Parabellum. That was it. Parabellum windscreens. Well, they make stuff for all sorts of things. That's why it was, I don't see the, um, Connie on there. So

Tim: the company National Cycle has got their own proprietary style of windshield. They call it the V Stream and they're supposed to do some vortex generating the. Which I've heard good things of, but have no firsthand experience with it. It's a little expending. It's 2 25 for the concourse,

Robin: so yeah, C 14. That's cool. All right, well this has been fun. How, how do we, do we do we wanna wrap this up? Anybody else that got anything else they wanna throw on the mix? Piper's still is buying motorcycles.

Travis: Yeah. She still doesn't know what she wants. You guys gonna get a scrambler, aren't you?

Piper: No,

Robin: I don't know. Scramble your current bike. Get yourself an upright posture, sport bike with less displacement. Yeah, it's just advice. It's not, yeah.

Tim: I got a question. Have you guys ever considered joining a motorcycle club?

Travis: I went to a Madison Motorcycle Club thing, and I found this to be very boring and I, uh, don't have the time for it.

Piper: I went to one LIT'S motorcycle, uh, Christmas party. And I made the mistake of thinking that it was an actual Christmas party. So I, I wore a Christmas sweater with like lots of colors and pretty things. And when I showed up it, it was like I had gone to an Estee Lauder conference and everyone was wearing just like black buttoned down and long, shaky things. And all these women were sort of like, um, I don't ride my bike. I just basically take it out of my garage and I park it in front of a beautiful mural and I take all these sexy pictures of half naked stuff happening and then I push it back into my garage and that's what I do. And one of the ladies there was like, oh my God, you bought a brand new bike? I don't buy brand new bikes. I date bikes. And I was like, I gotta get the fuck outta here. And that was the last time I tried to join a motorcycle group.

Tim: That sounds like a horrible thing. That sounds like the Harley groups around here.

Piper: It was pretty bad. So there's, yeah, at least in Colorado, as far as I know, there is like, There are like some pretty hardcore, like wind sister, right? Where there's like, they, they all have like really long grayish looking hair and everyone's a grandmother. Uh, or then there's the, um, Estee Lauder group. And then if not that, it's then like the Harley chicks who are like smoking for cigarettes at the same time and they're like, got their beer in there, may, maybe you should delete this anyways, their beer and their cupholders and they're like, I just don't fit in any of those groups.

Robin: Well, you're already a member. The super sleek, ultra badass motorcycle mega boss team. Incredible power. What more do you want? I wanna

Piper: ride together every single

Robin: weekend. I actually really want the, for the four of us, like when we get to, uh, you know, um, I hope we can get Travis in. I hope we can get Travis to come to Colorado. I know it's a long shot. We wanna try. Yeah, I sure hope it can happen. I'm gonna be there. I will be in Gunnison. We got a spot and Tim's already got the plan and Piper's gonna be there. Heck, we're gonna meet up with Piper and, and fam. I hope we, I hope we're still invited to the verbose thing. You are. Go see the ocean and hang out and then you can, you can backhand me in the face for anything I say that's been misconstrued, clearly misconstrued. It's gonna be fun. Tim, I'm curious to know what raised that question.

Tim: Yesterday was Madison Motorcycle Club meeting and I was just like, it always feels so funny how like a lot of my motorcycle friends are like balkanized in different groups and none of them tend to interact that much. Or there's a little bit overlap, but yeah. So

Robin: just kind of, it's one of your characteristics. We all have a lot of throughput in different directions, and one of your characteristics is that your throughput tends to be that Tim guy is one of the kindest people in the world. Let's get him over here. Little do they know. And I seem

Tim: to be the guy who was really easy to be dragged into doing

Robin: planning. Yeah. How fun is that? Huh?

Travis: They're like, Hey Tim, you designed circuit Board. It's your patient, right?

Tim: Uh, yeah. You, well, you know, tech, you wanna do something for us on a website? I'm like, uh, that's

Travis: different.

Tim: You know? That's not kind of

Travis: all, it is the same.

Robin: Yes, Tim does computers, web developer. Robin does computers. I got a problem with my

Tim: computer. You tried turning it off and walking

Robin: away. Pour soda on the keyboard. It fixes every time. Never

Travis: ending soda. Yeah.

Tim: Yeah.

Robin: And with that, this has been another episode of the The Riding Obsession Podcast. Tia Up Bike? I am pretty sure. I'm Robin Dean.

Travis: I'm Travis Burleson.

Tim: I've heard my name was Tim.

Piper: I might be Armen. Wait. I might be RNA Piper.

Robin: Thanks for joining us. Safe travels everyone.

Travis: Rob Armini team

Robin: We're sending the mics. This

Tim: is not to be recorded.

The Gist

Our interview this time around is with the "two and only" Murrae Haynes and Mabel Chin. They're the kind of couple that race sidecars together, among other great adventures on two wheels. Both discuss in detail the many ways motorcycling can bring people together.

Robin managed to scout the only leg of TRO's NM3 tour that hadn't yet been put to the test ... an experience that certainly didn't disappoint. Meanwhile, Piper says goodbye to her Aprilia SV4, a discussion that's being bumped to next month's episode instead. Tim managed to get his Honda Monkey up to 65 mph and Travis has a stack of bike options he feels Piper might like.

In listener question land, Sean Paul has a Kawasaki Concours 1400. It's seat angle keeps landing him up against the gas tank and his windscreen is likely causing "dirty" air. Our solutions are many!

Guest Interview

M&M Sidecar Racing

Murrae Haynes is an AHRMA superbike racer and racing instructor. He and Mabel Chin were (and are) a sidecar racing dynamic duo. Beyond that, they have a love for travel and adventure of all types, especially on motorcycles.

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