All the best laid plans were made a little wetter with the English summer becoming, well an English summer. With all of my family having their different plans the rain came, steady and stayed for most of the morning and on into the afternoon.
Remember the customer service I mentioned? Looking for a Vintage Military Vehicle show we were told by an employee of a historic attraction who was co-hosting the event that it was 'just outside'. A mile and a half later in the pouring rain and on foot we found it, with the rain stopping as soon as we got there!
My brother did mention that the fair-weather bikers only enjoy riding weather for about six weeks of the year and since he spent a few years on the back of a small cc bike as his main form of transportation, I have to believe him. What a shame.
So with this weather imposed break from sight seeing, I thought I'd share a few news items I found passing the day away on my Mum's computer.
Are you or aren't you?
It was reported in the Economic Times on September 1st, 'Harley Davidson to rock Indian streets'. The big boy from the world of biking is revving on the passage to India. America's cult bike brand Harley Davidson is exploring the opportunity of riding into the burgeoning Indian motorcycle market through the direct import route.
"We do not have a presence in India yet and are keen on entering this market. We are now exploring the opportunities for our entry into India," Harley Davidson Inc vice-president Timothy K Hoelter told The Times of India.
This was understandable since India is among the few motorcycle markets in the world that's growing at a fast pace with various manufacturers ramping up production to keep pace with the sales.
But then the Hindu Business Line quoted the same Timothy K Hoelter, on the same day as saying, "We are not ready to enter the Indian market right now. The high customs duty and the unique emission standards which are not easily applicable to bikes manufactured outside India are major constraints in entering the market", on the sidelines of the SIAM annual convention.
Mr Hoelter said as such their bikes were very expensive and with the high import duties, the company was not sure how these would fare in the Indian market.
"At present we are closely studying the Indian market and we don't want to commit mistakes by hurriedly introducing our products here," he said.
It's not only here, but autographed!
Thankfully this same confusion isn't surrounding the harley being signed by the guests on Jay Leno's The Tonight Show and expected to be auctioned on eBay.
From September 6th, his guests have been signing a 2006 touring motorcycle which will be placed up for bid with the proceeds going to benefit the victims of Hurricane Katrina and it's aftermath.
Harley-Davidson also announced that it'll make a further $1 million donation from the Harley-Davidson Foundation to the American Red Cross Hurricane 2005 Relief Fund.
Keep the drugs, we just want the T-shirts
I bet some vendors wish they were feeling the same kind of love as the American Red Cross.
It was reported in the Daily Times, 'Del Marva Now.com' that ten Ocean City Boardwalk businesses had merchandise seized from their stores for allegedly infringing upon trademarks held by B Line Inc., an event promotions corporation responsible for DelMarva and Ocean City's Bike Weeks, schedule to run September 15th through the 18th.
Items seized included T-shirts, shot glasses, heat transfer decals, jewelry and novelty items.
What would Jon and Ponch think?
For decades, Whittier Police Department motorcycle officers drove Kawasakis, just like the bikes Jon and Ponch rode on the old TV show "CHiPs."
Last week, the department received two new Harley-Davidson police motorcycles, complete with creamy white trim and a logo on the air coolers that reads: "Harley-Davidson - Police."
Whittier is catching up with a trend running throughout the country: Ninety percent of police motorcycles in the country are Harleys. Los Angeles Police Department officers also are trying out these models, said Bob Laidlaw, owner of Laidlaw's Harley Davidson Sales in Baldwin Park, which leased the new motorcycles to the Whittier department.
But it seems the LAPD doesn't need much persuasion since they already have seventy-five Harleys and are buying one hundred and ten more this year.
If you happen to see any of these officers of the law riding their bikes, it's not just the police training that makes them seem so smooth when they ride. The bikes are customized with an anti-lock braking system so officers can come to quick stops without skidding or being thrown over the handlebars.
Read the full story and how excited the Whittier Police are about the new bikes on the SGV Tribune website.
As with yesterdays post, I'll end with examples that riders hearts are bigger than the size of their bikes. Steele Angels motorcycle club presented a $700 check and $100 worth of gift cards to the Elizabeth Cashwell Elementary School in Raliegh, North Carolina on September the 9th.
News 14 Carolina's website reported that The Steele Angels also brought boxes full of supplies like pens, binders, and book bags. The school's principal teared up as she brought the boxes in and called the whole experience heart-warming.
You can read about how the Steele Angels raised the money and the presentation on their own blog!
In yesterday's blog I mentioned the efforts being made by Diane Sherwood of Luvurne, Minn to help with the 9/11 rescue workers' medical bills.
News channel 5 Akron, Ohio reported that an estimated 100 motorcyclists from northeast Ohio will leave for a three-day trip to commemorate Sept. 11. The riders departed from Century Harley-Davidson in Medina after a special ceremony at 9 a.m. Friday.
They will first travel to Shanksville, Pa., where a memorial stands for Flight 93. On Sunday, they'll join several thousand motorcyclists at the Pentagon.