Day 0 – The final countdown

Day 0

Date: 06/01/2016 Wednesday
Starting Location: Belmont, CA (Lea’s House)
Ending Location: San Carlos, CA (My Home)
Starting Odometer:
Ending Odometer:
Mileage Today
:  4 Miles
Mileage Total:  4 miles

All about today…

Today was all about finalizing my move, and getting my household goods packed up, and shipped to South Carolina.  I’d like to think that this was a straightforward activity, but between the mistakes that I made, and the last minute changes to the scheduled pick-up time, everything fell apart.  As friends were calling me, asking how things are going, I simply replied…  We’re at DEF CON 5 – And we’re not sure how any of this is going to work out.

The details of the move

I did a poor job of estimating the amount of stuff in my house.  It seems that I’ve done a fantastic job of not only buying stuff, and filling up my house, but I am apparently so efficient in placing things in cabinets that I’ve been able to tuck away a lot more stuff than anyone could have imagined.

So, when the movers showed up (3 hours later than scheduled), they looked at all of my stuff and said “I’m not sure we can fit all of that into our truck”.  And so began the chess game of packing my stuff into boxes, and then packing the truck.  The process started at noon, and continued until 11:00 PM, when the truck finally pulled away.

I put on my gear, and got ready to go…

Departing Belmont

The drop zone

You can’t see it in the picture, but directly in front of the bike is a good amount of garbage, and recycling that we produced.  My bike was parked so that it was 1/2 in the garage, and 1/2 out of the garage.  So, the apron of the garage has my bike parked on it, and it also has a huge pile of trash and recycling.

So, I decided that I would push the bike forward, moving it delicately around the trash, and parking it so that I could mount it, and drive away.  Now, before I go on, I need to set the context…

For anyone that is a biker, and who owns a big adventure bike, you’ll know that these bikes are tough, and when riding out in the wild, it is not uncommon to drop the bike.  I’ve seen a number of examples of fellow bikers who dropped their bike while pushing it up to the gas pump as a group of riders was refueling.  So, when I describe what happened next, please try to think of things with all of this as context.

So, I start to push the bike, and I’ve moved it forward about 4 feet.  I put the kickstand down, and I attempt to let the bike rest on the kickstand.  It just so happens that the garage apron has a bit of an angle to it, and as I was leaning the bike over, it was also still moving forward just a little bit.  So, when the bike’s kickstand hit the ground, instead of holding up the bike, it folded the kickstand into it’s regular storage place.

Of course, I did not know that the kickstand had folded, so when I let go of the bike, it started to come over.  I tried to fight it, but after my accident in 2013, I’ve learned my lesson, so I just let the bike fall, and did not fight it.

It’s 11:15 PM, I’m exhausted after getting up at 3AM to prepare for my move, and now I’m looking down at a fallen hero.  I believe that it’s the US Marines that say that they will never leave a man behind, so as I channeled the entire Marine branch of the military, I reached over, squatted down, and hauled that beast to it’s logical and prominent place on the garage apron.

And so it was that I left my home, more with a whimper than with a bang.  But, at least I was leaving and the trip was starting.

A change of plans

I had intended to be done with all of the moving work by 3PM, and to be in Alameda by 5PM.  Paul, Lea and I were going to celebrate Lea’s birthday.  But, by the time that we were done packing, and noticed that it was 11PM, it was no longer safe for me to make the 30 mile trip to Lea’s place in Alameda.

The trip to Lea’s place would have been entirely on several of the busiest highways in the Bay Area, and considering how tired I was, it did not make sense to make the trip to Alameda.  So, once again, Paul stepped in to help.  At this point, I have to mention that over the last 3 days, I’ve had a number of friends come by to help me pack.  Each time a new friend came over, I reported to them that I was about 95% done with packing.

Well, now I can see that it seems that I unknowingly lied to all of these friends.  i guess I’ll publicly apologize for misleading them, and thank them for the help.

Paul helped me pack during the final push, and he was awesome.  But Paul did even more;  As I stood there exhausted, about ready to collapse after working for about 20 hours, Paul offered to let me spend the night on his futon.  I immediately accepted, and off we went to Paul’s house.

The trip to Paul’s house is only about 3.5 miles, and it’s on roads that I know like the back of my hand.  Not to mention the fact that it’s now 11:15 in San Carlos.  Can you say “Sleepy little town”?  Of course there’s no traffic, and of course the trip would be fast, easy and uneventful.

We arrived at Paul’s place and he opened his garage to me so that the bike could sleep overnight indoors, and be ready for the real trip to begin the next morning.

Now, it’s midnight, and we’re all exhausted.  It’s time for bed, and it’s time for that restlessness to be parked in a dark place so that I can get some sleep.

Good night!


About the Author

Cliff Musante

Cliff Musante is a technologist, business leader, motorcycle enthusiast, father, grandfather, and more. In June, 2013 his passion for motorcycles was revitalized, and he set out to ride across Patagonia. Since then, he's logged thousands of miles, ridden across the US, and on July 10, 2019, he began a 120 day trip through Europe, and then on to Russia, China, and parts East. This 'Blog is the story of all of his adventures.


  1. Hi Cliff – It sure sounds like you had a grueling day, but it’s done and now it’s time to ride off into the sunrise and have some fun. Have a safe trip, and we look forward to seeing you in CT a few weeks.


    1. Thanks Doug,
      Yes, I’m on my way, and enjoying the trip so far. See you in 4 weeks.

  2. As all good project managers know, every status report from the team members is “95% done”. I wouldn’t have believed you either.

    1. Yes Don, that’s what I needed. A voice of reason from a seasoned veteran. But, lacking that, I had to lie to myself, and everyone around me. It seemed to be working at the time…

    1. Hi Doc,
      I write these posts after riding the day long, and then they get published at midnight that evening, eventually sent to you as an email with a link. So, by the time I wrote that post, I was already in Bridgeport, CA. I would have loved, and desperately need an adjustment.

  3. Cliff, here’s a reminder of a good stop if you get in the area. Riverfront Casino in Laughlin Nevada has a very nice Auto Museum upstairs. The part you’ll really appreciate is the extensive exhibit about a Brazilian 3X World Rounder on his Gold Wing.
    Ride safe, have fun, DO IT!

    1. Hi Bill,
      Great to hear from you. Unfortunately, these posts are coming about a day or two late, due to Internet bandwidth issues in some of the “hotels” that I’m staying in. It seems that when you spend $70 for a hotel, you get what you pay for, and apparently, I didn’t pay enough to get reasonable internet bandwidth. Said another say, I think I’ve missed my opportunity to stop in that place. Besides, the temps at Hoover Dam were at 120 degrees, and it was just about all I could do to make it to Mesquite without falling off of the bike. More to come tomorrow, now that I’ve got really good Internet access at the Holiday Inn.

  4. Hello Cliff,
    I am a friend of Laura’s and I live in the NW corner of Arkansas. If you should require assistance, a meal, refreshment, or a place to rest along the way, get in touch. Laura has my info. I’m also a motorcycle enthusiast and would like to meet you and see your bike if you should come this direction. Safe travels …

    Bella Vista, Arkansas

    1. Hi Fred,
      Boy, oh boy, that sure sounds like a great offer. I happen to be in need of a good meal, a cold shower, and some good conversation at night. Unfortunately, this trip does not take me through Arkansas, but this will not be my last. And, by the way, once I get to South Carolina, I would of course be happy to extend you the same offer. Only my offer will include BBQ, and beer in addition. If you’re interested, you can track me in real-time over the course of any given day. I’m using a DeLorme satellite transponder, and it’s working perfectly so far.

  5. Wow, 4 feet before dropping the bike. Gotta be a record somewhere. Hopefully this isn’t a omen for the rest of the trip, and instead your bike got all the nappiness out of it’s system.

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