My Goal

To raise $100,000 for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation. I can not achieve this goal without your generous personal and/or corporate donations. So please click on Susan G. Komen above and donate today to this worthy cause.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Poole's "Sporting Life"

Part of what has made my journey so enjoyable and interesting is that, as many of you know, I am interviewing people that I meet along the way about their version of a "sporting life". This is in conjunction with my sponsorship assignment with China's largest sports media group (Titan). I thought it would be interesting and fun for you to have an opportunity to read about some of my new friends that I have met during my adventure.

While riding on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia I met Richard and Maggie Poole. This 48 year old couple is from Youngsville, North Carolina and have been married for 29 years. Richard and Maggie met while working in a local restaurant while back in high school. Richard currently works for the Materials Division of the Electrical Coop for North Carolina. They have two sons ages 25 and 28 years old (they did have a middle son, but he passed away).

The couple have always enjoyed a sporting lifestyle. Richard is a former baseball player and coached their sons in the sport until they entered high school. They enjoy hiking, fishing and anything that will get them off the couch!

Now that the kids are out of the house, their sporting lifestyle tends to be focused around their bright yellow “T Bucket” (picture attached). It started as a 1923 Ford pickup truck. Maggie calls it “Richard’s Mistress! He found it about three years ago sitting in someone’s front yard. He asked the person out in front of the house if it was for sale. At that point there was only the shell of the body and the frame (no engine, radiator, or transmission). He made a deal with the guy and bought it for $1800. Over the next two years be put another $6200 into it and today this canary yellow T Bucket is the center of their sporting lifestyle.

No question that it is a work in progress, but they now belong to the NTBA (National T Bucket Association) and travel the country to events, shows, and exploring small wineries they find along the way. In the trailer they carry tools, suitcases, camping gear, and Maggie always leaves room for a case or two of good wine they find along the way. Richard admits that he has not yet convinced Maggie to camp, but he said that will come around soon. She just laughed!

They both love their “ride”, being outside, and enjoy all the people they meet along the way. They feel their T Bucket is a great way to stay active, meet new friends it gets them out of the house and away from all of their everyday hassles. They stop frequently along the way to view the scenery and to take short hikes. They both said they never are in a bad mood or have any stress after a nice long ride in the fresh air.

Both Richard and Maggie are so proud of their T Bucket and what this does for them. Richard says that Maggie is always asking him to take her for a ride. He even let’s her drive it, but more often than not he is the captain and she is the co-pilot. They said the car makes them feel young and hip! He said it will do over 100 miles an hour, but he keeps in within 10 miles per hour of the speed limit. They will even take it out of the garage for a spin in the middle of winter assuming it is nice day without snow. They bundle up and hit the road both grinning from ear-to-ear for an hour or two and then carefully put her back in the garage until next time there is a break in the weather.

The current trip they are on will cover over 1,500 miles. Both felt strongly that this is one of the best things they have ever done, but were only able to afford it once the kids were gone. Maggie felt it was a great $8,000 investment and a super way to reconnect with her husband after so many years with the kids living with them. Seeing them both climb up on the rear tire to step into their T Bucket was a real treat for me.

They are already planning on building another T Bucket that will be nicer, faster, and even more fun. They both commented that it has revitalized their marriage, gets them out in the fresh air, and gives them something to really look forward to doing together. Richard said, “It beats TV by a mile”.

The Poole’s feel this new hobby will keep them young and allow them to enjoy a sporting lifestyle for decades to come. Their exercise these days consists of working in their one acre garden that surrounds their house. Both love this work in progress too and said that they get plenty of exercise keeping the grounds up.

Relative to diet, they will pretty much eat what ever they like, but Maggie added that it has to be cooked (no sushi for this kid) and they both love plenty of veggies and chicken. Meat and pork are also high on their list. They seemed to be more interested in living than dieting!

The Poole’s were a great couple for me to meet during my journey and I thoroughly enjoyed the hour we spent together. I saw them two or three other times during the day and we always waved as we passed one another along this scenic highway.

1 comment:

Robert Kirby said... was such an incredible thrill to meet you in Salina KS. I shared the pic i took of you and your great bike with my whole family and couldnt stop talking about you and your trip. What a great opportunity for you. I hope you make it home soon. I know your family must miss you alot!!!

Again....great to meet you. Youre awesome for doing this!!!

Tracking Dave's Journey

The Plan

My plan is to have a great day everyday and to help make a difference!

On May 29, 2008 at 7:00AM I will throw my left leg over my modern day version of Peter Fonda’s “Captain America” Harley Davidson motorcycle and I will begin a 3+ month journey of a lifetime. I have dreamt about this trip for years and have meticulously planned every aspect of it from what to take, where to go, what to see and most importantly, what I want to accomplish during such a journey.

I plan to ride the back roads of America through 49 of the 50 states in our beloved country and much of Canada in a single ride while hopefully raising $100,000 for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation. Weather and my mood will dictate my direction far more than any set schedule. I am firmly committed to ride through a great deal of every state and not to just clip the corners in order to be able to scratch them off my list. I am planning on both camping and staying in hotels along the way. I anticipate that I will log between 300 to 400 miles per day on most of my riding days.

No riding companions or chase cars for me during this journey – just my own thirst for adventure, wacko sense of humor and willingness to talk to anyone, anytime and anywhere as I motor throughout North America while getting to know the locals along the way. I want to learn as much as I can about their views toward life, family, sports and their careers.

In addition, one of my primary goals is to spread the word regarding the importance for regular breast cancer screening exams and to help to raise money so that we can find the cure sooner versus later. Be it big city malls or small town coffee shops in the middle of rural North America, I want to help raise the awareness about this disease and hopefully get more people committed to help us find the cure as I gain more insight into the lives of people I meet during my journey.

My custom 2003 Harley Davidson Dyna Wide Glide – “Captain America” – has been outfitted with a special handle bar camera mounting system and custom rear rack that will allow me to carry all the essentials for my journey as well as the things I need to be able to continue to update my blog, communicate with my family and friends, and to be able to do some work while on the road.

Follow my Journey

I will be updating my blog at least once a week with stories about my trip, the people I meet, and I will also post photos I take along the way. In addition, I will keep you posted about media interviews I am able to arrange over the next several months as I publicize the purpose for this journey. As you can see, the blog will allow us to communicate with one another and I am really looking forward to hearing from you.

I will try to describe the good, the bad and the ugly regarding my travels. As in any adventure, there will be highs and lows and some incredible experiences and stories that I will no doubt want to share with you. As an example, I can just imagine the feelings of excitement and fear of the unknown that I will experience as I first pull out of my driveway on May 29th. How will I feel after my first breakdown, severe storm, or after a long day in the saddle seeing incredible scenery, or getting to know my first truly fascinating person? It should be interesting and I hope you will enjoy my adventure along with me. Remember, in motorcycle riding as in life, "It is not the destination, but the journey that matters!"

The Why

How many times have you heard someone say that they are going to do “this” or “that” when they have more free time and/or the money? Often their dreams are never realized because “life” gets in the way and the next thing they know it is simply too late for one reason or another. Well, one of my primary objectives in life is not to let this happen to me. What is the old saying, “You only go around once!”

I have been blessed with a great family and career and have had an opportunity to live, work and play around the world. I am combining two of my great passions in life which are my love of motorcycles and a desire to find the cure for breast cancer.

Why Motorcycles?

I fell in love with Harley Davidson motorcycles 15 years ago when Bill (my buddy) first showed up at my house riding his new bike. I only remember three things about that day – candy apple red paint, chrome everywhere and Bill’s ear-to-ear grin! He decided to take up the sport after one of our closest friends (Dick Fletcher) passed away while several of us were surfing in Del Mar. Dick’s passing was a real tragedy and wake-up call for us all. Bill had concluded that life is short and very unpredictable and he wanted to start living everyday to the fullest!

Over the initial concerns my wife had about the dangers of motorcycle riding, I soon followed Bill’s lead and bought my first Harley and have been a long distance rider ever since with some trips covering over 7,000 miles.

Why Breast Cancer?

Because this dreaded disease has taken so many lives and impacted so many others. My family is no exception.

Doreen (the love of my life) is one of the lucky and growing number of breast cancer survivors. It was a real eye opener for us both back in 2005 when she was first diagnosed shortly after our close friend (Gerri Hickman) had just lost her 4+ year battle with the disease. These two events rocked our world, brought us even closer together and made us realize that the years are marching on. It also made our family realize that we do have so much to be truly thankful for and we must treat every day as a gift.

The Beginning

On May 29th I will arrive at VG’s Donuts and Bakery located in downtown Cardiff by the Sea at exactly 7:15AM sharp. You ask why start from VG’s? Because it is the best darn donut shop and bakery in all of Southern California and I should know.

I have been going there religiously for the past 30+ years whenever I am in town. It is not just about the donuts: it is about a great family business that is truly focused on quality bakery products and friendly service. Joe and his family have built a thriving business over the past 39 years. VG’s for as long as I can remember has had fiercely loyal customers from CEOs to surf bums. The best way to describe it is kind of like a combination of Cheers and Central Perk! Oh yes, VG stands for "Very Good".

For more than three decades, I have been one of their loyal customers and a friend. As an example, on May 28th 1977 at 5:00AM I even pulled off the freeway while my wife (Doreen) was in heavy labor with our first child (Brendon) to grab my usual order to go. Needless to say, she was not overly pleased with me that morning as she was not enjoying the wonderful smell of hot coffee and donuts while she was huffing and puffing and getting much closer to giving birth to our ‘little” 9 pound 3 ounce bundle of joy... “Brennie-Boy”. Later that day, and even today, she says, “what the hell were you thinking? We still laugh about it all these years later.

I have chosen VG’s as the starting point for my epic journey so that I can have an opportunity to throw back one last great cup of coffee and maybe a maple glazed and cinnamon crumb or two. It will also give me an opportunity to say goodbye to family, friends, interested on lookers, and any media before I head north towards Alaska on the first stage of my adventure.

I hope you can come down to VG’s that morning for a cup of coffee and a donut or two and give me the kind of send off that only a “wacko” like me would enjoy. I will even buy the coffee and a couple of donuts for the first 50 people who show up to send me off in style... and they say bribery does not work!

At about 8:15AM on that morning I will say my last goodbyes, climb on board “Captain America”, hit my electric starter, the... my journey begins and yes, this will be a day that I will never forget!

Our Family

Our Family
Kelly, Dave, Doreen, Sophie (aka Precious) and Brendon
A beautiful winter day at the beach in San Diego, December 2006
This “Cruising for the Cure” breast cancer fundraising ride would not be possible without the generous support of Titan Media, our sole media sponsor. Titan is the largest sports media publishing company in China with over 7 million readers. Their major monthly magazines included All Sports (the Chinese equivalent of our Sports Illustrated) and Outside. They also publish a series of sporting newspapers that come out several times a week.

The group is very supportive of the “Cruising for the Cure” because this disease knows no borders and more and more Chinese are impacted by it every day.

They are also enthusiastic about running a series of articles in their various publications about my adventure and the people I meet along the way. As you may or may not know, a growing number of men and women in China have adopted a sporting lifestyle in order to stay fit, reduce stress, and to live longer, healthier, and happier lives. They are all very keen to learn more about the sporting lifestyles enjoyed by both Americans and Canadians living in both countries.

During my journey, I will be interviewing young and old alike regarding this subject and sharing what I learn with their readers in both their newspapers and monthly magazines.
Corporate Donors include the following: