Dave's Cross-Country Trip 2003

Day Ten

by Dave Schultheis


Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - Franklin, Tennessee

I slept well and was up before 6:00 a.m. Central Time to the sound of a little-tiny "I forgot who's in there, but I want to play" scratch at the door. It was Bob and Willa's dog Mojo. So I said "hello" to Mojo, then dressed, made some notes and checked the maps.

At the time of this trip, Bob had just had outpatient surgery and was in considerable pain from swelling in a most intimate area. He needed the assistance of an ice pack most of the time and did not walk very well, but was in good spirits.

We had some breakfast on the deck, then made some phone calls. The Road King was due for an oil and filter change, and my rear tire was running low on tread. Bob called one dealer but they were busy, then he called Harley-Davidson of Cool Springs and they told him to send me in; they didn't have any Dunlop K491 rear tires but they had a plain-ol' Dunlop 402 they could put on the rear; I should ask for Blaine.

So I left Casa de Carroll at 11:25 a.m. and rode 8 miles to Cool Springs, a southern suburb of Nashville. It's a fairly new dealership, right next to a shopping mall, with a drive-up service department. When they open the roll-up door, you drive right in. Blaine was busy, so I talked to Benjy the service-writer. They were to change the oil and filter, replace the rear tire, and check the primary and transmission fluid levels. And there was a sign on the counter-top: 25% off Dunlop tires installed. My lucky day.

They assigned my bike to technician Adam, and I could see through the window from the MotorClothes department into the shop that he took the bike in, put it on the lift, and got to working on it.

The MotorClothes and Parts departments were about the same as many other dealers I have visited. Numerous tee-shirts and other clothing, collectibles, dog collars, etc. They had a section set aside as a lounge, with magazines and a television set. I looked for Fat Boy logo tee-shirts, but they did not have any.

Outside was a big, round metal building with numerous roll-up doors around in a circle, that houses new, used and rental motorcycles. I got to admiring many of them. The dealership had purchased about a dozen V-Rods and then had them custom-painted locally; red, yellow, green, blue, etc. Quite beautiful; and I hoped they could find people to buy them. I looked carefully at some of the touring bikes, partly for ideas about useful accessories, but one of the young (hungry) salesmen wanted me to buy one. I guess he didn't really understand that I can only ride one at a time on a cross-country trip. But you can't blame him for trying.

While waiting, I called my brother James on the cellular phone. He lives in another Nashville suburb, and has been a Road Captain with the H.O.G. chapter at Boswell's H-D in Nashville for several years. They were preparing for a state rally the next weekend, so it didn't look like we would have time to get together.

He did tell me that the (probable) reason for Cool Springs offering 25% off Dunlop tires is that Boswell's was offering 30% off Dunlop tires. I appreciated the thought, and his loyalty to his home dealer, but I doubt that I would have found Boswell's without a guide, and nobody was available, and Cool Springs was much closer.

I would periodically check through the window to see Adam's progress, and eventually he was done and took off on a test ride. I waited outside in very warm temperatures for him to return. He said that the oil didn't look too bad, and that the primary and transmission fluid levels were okay, and everything else was fine.

So, back inside, Blaine was now available, and when I introduced myself, he remembered talking with Bob earlier, picked up the work order and said, "Let me do some fine-tuning on that."

He ended up saving me about $20, plus the 25% off on the Dunlop tire, and I got outta there for a little over $220 at 2:25 p.m. When I went outside to pick up the bike, two of their workers (I call them "lot boys," but "utility workers" might be a more acceptable term) were washing the Road King! That was nice, but they were using a high-pressure hose, and it was removing some notes I had taped to the inside of the windshield. Oh, well, they also got the first one or two layers of road grime as well.

I got back to Casa de Carroll at 2:50 p.m. and we adjourned to the patio and back yard area. There was a little bit of mosquito biting going on, but otherwise it was very pleasant outside. They have a huge community back yard (no fences between homes) and there is a city park with baseball field just beyond the woods, so we could sometimes hear the crack of an aluminum bat, followed by the roar of the crowd as someone hit a home run.

While I was gone, Bob had heard from various net scum by telephone; Ulises P. and Madelin, Turbo & Maryann, and Taz & Nikki would be here tomorrow.

Later I checked for messages and returned a few calls; one of my co-workers had taken ill and was in very bad condition. However, everyone was doing what they could for him and for his wife, so I appreciated the notifications and planned to check later.

Willa prepared a wonderful dinner of pork, mashed potatoes, corn-on-the-cob, and apples. It's great to have a home-cooked meal after so many days on the road.

We watched some television and I went to bed around 9:30 p.m.

I got a cellular phone call about 12:45 a.m. Central Time (but only 10:45 p.m. Pacific Time) from my friend Curtis, with an update on our co-worker's condition. It did not look good.

Miles for the day = 20. Miles for the trip = 4201.

Tomorrow: another day of rest, more net scum arrive, and a great barbeque dinner.


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Created on January 5, 2004. Updated on January 20, 2004.
David W. Schultheis, San Josť, Silicon Valley, Santa Clara County, California, USA