Spirit Traffic is the story of the 10,000-mile motorcycle trip the author C. Jane Taylor took with her husband, John, and son, Emmett, to celebrate Emmett’s college graduation. They were all new riders, and it was their first trip. In May, Jane and John took Spirit Traffic back to the road on their BMW 650 GSs for a 97-day national book tour. Below is her third installment of Postcards from the Road, which will be published every Monday.
Related Story: C. Jane Taylor Rides 6,000 Miles on National Book Tour
May 28, 2022
The Maine wind is legendary. You can see it in the flights of eagles and ospreys, and in the blown away hairdos of sea captains in 1900s oil paintings of the Maine coast. The wind is why this coast is so treacherous for sailors. And motorcyclists. Leaning into the curves is ill advised in the inconsistent, gusty conditions we’ve encountered here. And I’ve got to remember to lower my shoulders away from my ears as I ride. It might just lower my center of gravity, even if only psychologically.
Day Ten: We stayed in Yarmouth with my college buddy Seth (aka ‘my guitarist’) and his wife, Brandy. Seth was a very talented guitarist and is a brilliant composer. Several years ago, he built an exquisite classical guitar. He has not played nor heard it played since his stroke five or six years ago. John played it for him. Villa Lobos, Bach, Rodrigo, Tárrega. I cried remembering Seth’s lost virtuosity and the sweetness of his attentive listening as John played.
Days Eleven and Twelve: We stayed with Ander and Dave and their dog Niko. Ander introduced John to kayaking nearly thirty years ago when she, as activities director at the College of the Atlantic, hired the New Nile Orchestra (John’s Ethiopian band) to play a gig. I did a reading at RSU #24 (regional school unit) where Ander teaches. We cooked burritos afterward and laughed a lot. We were sad to leave.
Days Thirteen and Fourteen: We’re staying in Brooksville, Maine, with Ticia and Dan, who promises that the antique toy piano is not haunted. Ticia is John’s childhood friend from Laramie, Wyoming, where John grew up. Dan is her awesome guy. We’re in the 1840s farmhouse they sometimes let out on Airbnb. Tonight, I read at the Blue Hill Public Library.
Friday and Saturday: We travel across the border with a soggy forecast and happy hearts to Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec.
May 31, Grapefruit Moon Cafe, Toronto
June 1, Cafe Creperie, Elora, Ontario
June 3, St Clair Public Library, St Clair, Michigan
Keep the rubber side down.
Spirit Traffic can be purchased on the author’s website. It is also available on eBook and as an audio book read by the author.