#19 Friendswood

2006 May 14-17

Sunday was the first time, this trip, I got caught in a severe thunderstorm. I left Orange in the middle of the day headed to Friendswood. I got hit by a pretty good shower west of Beaumont, but I pulled over and let it pass. I continued when it let up. It eventually stopped raining and the pavement even dried out. However, about the time I turned south off I10 toward Friendswood, it started again. Soon the rain was pouring down hard and getting heavier and heavier as I rode. By the time I got to Baytown, visibility was so bad many of the cars were pulling over or driving slow with their flashers going. As bad as it was, I proceeded to cross the Hartman Bridge. When I reached the top of the bridge, the effects of the wind were more pronounced and I could feel the bridge swaying and see the rain blowing sideways. These sensations gave me feeling of vertigo.

As I descend off the bridge, I began to question my judgment -- I decided this was just STUPID to be riding in this weather, so I pulled over a couple exits past the bridge. I was soaking wet by then...of course. I got fuel at a Shell and sat and watched it pour down for another 30 minutes or so. I took my chance when the rain let up and drove the last 20 miles or so to Friendswood.

When I made it to my next stop in Friendswood, I changed into some dry clothes and watched it rain for another hour or so. I think I'll try to avoid rain for the next few days. That was enough!

A couple days later, I crossed the same bridge from LaPorte to Baytown (Fred Hartman Bridge) in really nice weather -- it was actually a very pleasant experience. What a difference the weather can make!
Tuesday (May 16), I back-tracked to the Baytown area to visit a friend I hadn't seen in probably 18 years. Spent the afternoon with her, ate wonderful fajitas, met her daughters, and just caught up with each other.
Claye, Emily and Marisa on Fleeter.
Lisa posing for a quick picture with Fleeter and me before I pull out. It’s been a long time since she last rode with me in the early 1980s.
My new little buddy, Agnus, the toy schnauzer.Webster, TexasOn my way to meet a new friend in Pearland, I rode by NASA. I spent the evening getting to know a fellow motorcycle rider. She's a serious rider -a certified Iron Butt member. To qualify as an "Iron Butt," you must ride 1,000 miles in 24 hours or less.
Thanks for sharing your time with me, Barb!The Challenger 7 Memorial Park on NASA Parkway.
My Friendswood friends, Katie and Jeanie, took me to Kemah to eat on the Boardwalk my last night in Friendswood. This was one of our views while eating at Landry's at an outside table.

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