Another Wing Ding is in the books. Wing Ding 36 in Madison, WI was a great success. The total attendance was 8,873 and the weather was terrific. It was a personally satisfying event for me as I have not been to a Wing Ding in six years and it was so good to catch up with old friends, see all the vendors who were having an awesome show, and see so many bikes in the parking lots. My grandchildren came down one day to see me and we walked the lots to see the bikes and I was thrilled to see the variety. Everything from a beautiful GL1000 with a Vetter fairing, to all the new 1800's, to all the trikes, Spyders, Harley's, BMW's and folks with trailers and sidecars.

Speaking of seeing special friends, I had the chance to catch up with Dauna Hamilton and her daughter, Kris at Wing Ding. Dauna is the widow of JB Hamilton who was an Officer and Member of our Event Management Team who passed several years ago. Dauna made a quilt in JB's memory and I had a chance to interview her about that process for her. Being a dear friend and a Life Member of GWRRA, it was such a pleasure to write her quilt story below.

As I mentioned all the events at Wing Ding were well attended, from the Opening Ceremonies where they announced next years event in Huntsville, AL to Closing Ceremonies where GWRRA, our sponsors and Honda gave away some awesome prizes, lots of money and even a Valkyrie. What a lucky guy, eh! Drill Team performances, Light Parade, Grand Parade, all the seminars and the rider education programs were all well attended. We had a great time at the J&M's entertainment event with over $8,000 being raised for the Paralyzed Veterans organization.

I even had a chance to interview many of you about what new events and activities you would like to see in future Wing Dings. Once we get all the ideas compiled, I will share them with you over the next few months. For those of you who could not make it to Madison or did not get a chance to meet me, here is your chance to get in on helping design the Wing Ding of the future. Write me here with your ideas of what events and/or activities you think would make Wing Ding more FUN and bring more Members to the event. Remember, starting next year, 2015, Wing Ding in Huntsville, AL, will be over the Labor Day weekend.

We owe a huge shout out to all the Officers and Volunteers who take the time and energy to help all our delegates to make Wing Ding such a fantastic event. GWRRA and Wing Ding could not be the organization or the event it is without these folks...THANK YOU ALL!!

Another group of folks we all need to thank for Wing Ding is the Event Management Team. These folks are also Volunteers who come to Wing Ding each year and do all the setup of the tradeshow, the vendors, and keep the show running the entire time. They also make sure all the events, go off without a hitch, in addition to making sure all the bikes get into the vendors for their appointments on time. All these folks are former GWRRA Officers and arrive at Wing Ding before it opens and leave well after the last event. Many of them are Life Members and they all deserve a round of applause from all of us!

Regarding other events coming up, we are all very excited about GWRRA's Weekend at the Opry. Late registration ends August 4th, so if you want to go, please register online as quickly as you can! Or, FAX your application to 877-384-9416 before August 4th!

Also coming up is our western event called Reno Rendezvous at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno, NV in June, 2015! This is an amazing property with everything we need to hold a spectacular event. There will be a great tradeshow, lots of incredible rides in a beautiful part of our country and the venue has everything from a 50-lane bowling alley, to golf, to a casino, to shows, to enough hotels for everyone to stay and play right there!

Last month I mentioned how much we should all be appreciative of our Officers and Volunteer staffs. I received a great suggestion after that to run a profile of a current or former Officer each month in Wingin' It and I think that is a great idea. So, what we need are submissions from you, either current or former Officers; to include your history with GWRRA, the positions held, a picture of you and your ride (jpg format preferred), dates, Chapters/Districts/Regions served, and limited to 300-500 words. Please send your submissions to me here. We already received our first submission, check it out below.   


I want to personally thank all the contributors to the August issue of Wingin' It. Thank you to our Directors, Ray and Sandi Garris for their article on "How To Have Fun in GWRRA By Thinking Outside The Box."  My thanks also go out to Joe and Gracie Mazza for their Rider Education articles, Gene Hanselman for his wonderful stories, and Tom Hendricks for his continued supply of great jokes and a story about his Chapter's Bug Run. There is a great article "Fix It"  from our Deputy Directors, Bill and Dea Ann Gray, and a wonderful Member Ride article by Bob Ford.  Tom Dierig, our CD from KY-G, wrote a nice article about saving space. Claude Roberts wrote an article about his dream bike from Alaska. Remember to send in your pictures of your machine next month so we can feature it! Also, don't forget to read the coupon at the bottom of the Wingin' It to save 38 percent off the GWRRA's Black Pocket T-shirt!
Remember to check out GWRRA's website for all the latest news, benefits, updates and information. One more request, please forward this copy of Wingin' It to all your friends who ride! THANKS!!

Thanks for all your continued support! Ride safe and FIND-A-FRIEND!


Ed Price

GWRRA Events Manager | Wingin' It Editor 


Gold Wing Road Riders Association | 



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In This Issue
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Bug Run
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Director's Article
Rider Education Article
Member Ride
Free Download
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Chapter Director Article
Remembering A Member/Officer
Another Member Story
Dream Bike
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A Different Vacation  

 This Year


Billy Bob and Luther were talking one afternoon when Billy Bob tells Luther, "Yaw know, I reckon I'm 'bout ready for a vacation.

Only this year I'm gonna do it different. The last few years, I took your advice about where to go.

Three years ago you said to go to Hawaii. I went to Hawaii and Earlene got pregnant.

Then two years ago, you told me to go to the Bahamas, and Earlene got pregnant again.

Last year you suggested Tahiti and darned if Earlene didn't get pregnant again." 

Luther asks Billy Bob, "So, what you gonna do this year that's different?"

"I'm taking Earlene with me."




  Sent in by  

Tom Hendricks




 "If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am not for others, what am I? And is not now, when?"   


-Rabbi Hillel        




"If we did all we were capable of doing, we would literally astonish ourselves."

-Thomas Edison



Looking for Articles


Remember, we are looking for articles for YOUR e-Newsletter! 


Travelogues, Member and Officer profiles, Chapter activities, your stories about how joining GWRRA has positively affected your life, etc.


And don't forget those great Gold Book stories.


Please send your stories to me here.

"Bug Run"

Write up provided by:
 Tom Hendricks and photo's provided by Ken and Connie Jordan.


Blanco Bowling Club Café

Blanco, TX

12 July, 2014

Where's a bug when you need one? Neither Tux nor I had ever been on a "Bug Run" so we did not really know how to prepare and do whatever was possible needed to win at this new biker craze.




A "Bug Run" starts out with everyone having clean windshields and hopefully as you proceed to your destination you will encounter enough bugs on your windshield to overlay a bull's eye target and the person with the most bugs either on the target or closest to the bull's eye wins. Well, Tux said he had never really thought about it but we found out there are not many flying bugs in our part of Texas during the heat of the summer.



"Bug Run" champion of Chapter U


Tux, being the competitor he is, somehow convinced the bug judge, Ken Jordan, that a miniscule brown spot on our windshield was in reality the remains of a bug. We are now the "Bug Run" champions of Chapter U. This reminded Tux of one of his favorite jokes. "What is the last thing that goes through a bugs brain as he implodes on your windshield?" The answer is (drum roll, please) "his butt." Tux is still ROTFLMBO. (For those of you who don't know the acronym, that is "Rolling on the floor, laughing my butt off."


Our ride to the Blanco Bowling Club Café was straight north on Highway 281 to Blanco in pursuit of the notorious windshield bugs. One of the benefits of living in our part of Texas is the variety of good riding venues that are readily available so close of one of the largest cities in the United States, i.e., San Antonio, TX.


Gold Wings and Texas backroads, Gotta love em.


Crabapple Road



Looking for a more scenic and interesting trip home Sam Morris, Ken and Connie Jordan, Tom Hendricks, Rick Kendrick, Sal Pesta, and Pat Wall all would have to agree that wheeling down Crabapple and Edge Falls Roads make for a particularly enjoyable ride.


What's so funny, guys?


All in all, we had a very pleasant breakfast at the Blanco Bowling Club Café and I believed everyone enjoyed the ride, scenery and camaraderie coming and going. Tux told one last bug related joke as we completed our ride, "How many roaches does it take to screw in a light bulb? Can't tell. Soon as the light goes on, they scatter."


Until next time, ride safe, ride often and watch out for bugs!


Now, that's a bug!








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Submitted by:
Tom Hendricks



Curiosities about the history of certain words, phrases, and practices


1. WHY:

Why do men's clothes have buttons on the right while women's clothes have buttons on the left?



When buttons were invented, they were very expensive and worn primarily by the rich. As most people are right-handed, it is easier to push buttons on the right through holes on the left.  Because wealthy women were dressed by maids, dressmakers put the buttons on the maid's right!   And that's where women's buttons have remained since.


2. WHY:

Why do ships and aircraft use 'mayday' as their call for help?



This comes from the French word m'aidez - meaning 'help me' - and is pronounced, approximately, 'mayday.'


3. WHY:

Why are zero scores in tennis called 'love'?



In France, where tennis became popular, the round zero on the scoreboard looked like an egg and was called 'l'oeuf,' which is French for 'the egg.'   When tennis was introduced in the US, Americans (naturally), mispronounced it 'love.'


4. WHY:

Why do X's at the end of a letter signify kisses?



In the Middle Ages, when many people were unable to read or write, documents were often signed using an X. Kissing the X represented an oath to fulfill obligations specified in the document. The X and the kiss eventually became synonymous.


5. WHY:

Why is shifting responsibility to someone else called 'passing the buck'?



In card games, it was once customary to pass an item, called a buck, from player to player to indicate whose turn it was to deal.  If a player did not wish to assume the responsibility of dealing, he would  'pass the buck' to the next player.


6. WHY:

Why do people clink their glasses before drinking a toast?



In earlier times it used to be common for someone to try to kill an enemy by offering him a poisoned drink.  To prove to a guest that a drink was safe, it became customary for a guest to pour a small amount of his drink into the glass of the host.  Both men would drink it simultaneously. When a guest trusted his host, he would only touch or clink the host's glass with his own.






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Director's Article
submitted by:
Ray & Sandi Garris

How to have FUN by "Thinking outside the box."


We have recently been hearing a lot about a Chapter in New Mexico that is really having a lot of FUN at their Chapter gatherings by "Thinking outside the box!" We did some checking and here is what we found: Judy and John Metts, new CDs of NM-R representing Roswell and SE New Mexico, weren't sure what they were supposed to do in their new role as CDs. Their DD, Keith Morrison, and ADD, Doug Pettigrew told them they needed to make sure the Members had FUN, particularly at their gatherings.  


Judy went to work immediately. She and John, her husband, decided to come up with a different theme for each gathering. The first was Mardi Gras. Having attended Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama, they knew just what was needed to bring that celebration to NM-R. They made up strings of beads with the GWRRA emblem on each for all their  Members. They asked the restaurant for some special menu items, lots of decorations and two "King" cakes. The next month was Easter. Along with decorations, they dressed in their Easter Bunny ears, and presented the Members with plastic eggs that contained lots of FUN gifts. Each was opened separately and lots of laughter was heard throughout the crowd.


In April, (this is my favorite idea) they held an "After Taxes Party." Members were asked to dress according to their tax status. If they had to pay extra taxes, they came dressed as paupers. If they received a refund, they were asked to dress in their finest attire. Each couple had to bring a can of corn and a can of ranch beans which were opened and added to hamburger meat, onions and tomatoes. The empty cans were washed out and used as bowls to eat their stew. For dessert, there was "Millionaire Pie" served on china plates.


May is the time for Spring cleaning, so everyone was asked to bring a small garage sale/white elephant-type item. Each item was placed in a brown paper sack. All of the door prizes were also placed in brown sacks. All sacks were passed around, tied to a story with "trigger words" that changed the direction of the bags. At the end, everyone ended up with at least one or more bags.


June used the theme of "The Wizard of GWRRA," follow the "Yellow Brick Road". Members received awards and prizes for riding around the Land of GWRRA and managing to conquer and preserve. The award for courage was given the folks who showed courage and in enduring the "Wicked Wind of the West" on their way to the Region Rally in St. George, UT. They also received a stuffed lion, a set of bungie cords and some super glue to hold themselves in their seats. There were many other awards themed to the "Wizard of Oz" and cleverly adapted to GWRRA. They were all met with appreciation and lots of applause and most important, every Member had lots of FUN!


All of these themes were also supported with clever and humorous certificates that I am sure ended up being displayed with pride, thus reminding everybody of the FUN they had at their NM-R gathering.


YOU too can think outside of the box with your gatherings. If you run out of ideas, just ask Judy & John Metts, they have lots to share with you. By the way, the attendance at their Chapter gatherings has continued to grow.


That's all the time we have now, we're on our way to NM-Rs next gathering. We recognize "FUN" when we hear about it.


Our thanks to Judy & John Metts, Keith & Teresa Morrison and Doug & Chris Pettigrew for sharing with us all, "How to have FUN at a Chapter gathering!"



Rider Education Article
by Joe & Gracie Mazza

Wing Ding 36---Madison, Wisconsin


If you haven't heard by now, Wing Ding 36 in Madison, Wisconsin was a rousing success, especially in our little corner of the event at the Motorist Awareness Booth. We were able to distribute 330 "Look Twice, Save A Life, Motorcycles Are Everywhere" Yard Signs and over 300 Bumper Stickers as well as many other MA items. We also successfully raffled off a patriotic quilt, made by Gracie Mazza, that was won by a very happy Anita Fosnight, Region A Leadership Trainer.


One thing that we were able to do this year, that we really never found the time for at past Wing Dings, was to take some time to visit the countryside. Our good friends and Wisconsin District MAC's and former Motorist Awareness Coordinators of the Year, Bill and Mervi Bannasch, drove us around the nearby Amish country where we stopped to shop at a number of Amish stores. We bought some cheese, of which I am very fond, and various other sundries. The weather was perfect, 60's and 70's, and since we had just left home in Florida where the temperatures were in the 80's and 90's daily, with high humidity, it was a great treat for us.


When you work at a booth at Wing Ding, you need lots of help to make your presentation a success. We were fortunate to have that this year. We would like to thank the following friends for giving of their time: 1) Bud and Ginger Marion, Chapter FL1-A, Tampa,Florida, who were invaluable when it came to selling raffle tickets. 2) Mike and Barri Critzman, Region F MAC's and this years Motorist Awareness Coordinators of the Year,  who were with us every day and worked diligently to help make the MA Booth a success. 3) Bill and Mervi Bannasch, Wisconsin District MAC's, who were also in attendance daily and not only worked hard at the booth but also acted as our guide to the Amish country. 4) Larry Penepent, Region H MAC, A good friend who also spent much time with us.


This year's Motorist Awareness award winners were:


                    Motorist Awareness Coordinators of the Year

                Mike and Barri Critzman-Region F MAD Coordinators


                   MA Merit Award Winners     

 Cliff Simpson-Arizona District MA Coordinator     

Wayne and Elva Grant-Region N  


   MA Coordinators 
Sally Valot-MA Coordinator Ch. OH-M and OH-I-2                    

               Bob Rosenbaum-MA Coordinator WI-A



The friendships that exist in our organization really shine at occasions such as Wing Ding. You get to see folks you may not have not seen for a long time since they live great distances from you. E-Mails and phone calls are wonderful but they are not the same as face to face visiting. For instance, this was our first visit with the Critzman's since they live in California and we live in Florida. We had talked to them many times before actually meeting. It's nice to put a face to a voice. All four of us were very happy with finally getting together. Also, since the Bannasch's didn't attend Wing Ding last year, so we hadn't seen them for two years. Phone calls and E-mails, yes, face to face, no. Hopefully, all of us will be together again for Wing Ding 37 in Huntsville, Alabama. We have become an enthusiastic family of Gold Wingers.



Member Ride
submitted by:
Bob Ford
Chapter Z, Pasadena, Texas 

Our 11,000 Mile Ride  


Last summer I started my ride from Houma, La on June 28.  After meeting up with other Members of  the Chapter, we rode to Robbinsville, North Carolina where we rode Tail of the Dragon, Moonshiners Run and other roads in the area before continuing on to Wing Ding.  I then parted with the group and made my way down to Orlando to visit with an old friend. 
The only problem on this part of the ride was we got wet every day that we rode.  I am glad we were on Gold Wings and not Harleys.
After making my way back along the gulf coast to Pasadena, I rested for a week before putting my dog on the back seat of my 1500 and heading west. It was real amusing to watch people start to pass me, then slow down to take pictures when they realized  what was on the back seat.  Every time I would stop at a scenic lookout or park or gas station, they would walk over to check out Lulu and take pictures.
I ended up in Roseville, CA at some friends where I picked up a sidecar and coupled it up. I couldn't get anyone to check out the alignment, but since I felt I had it close, I started for home on a different route.  About 5 miles out of Bishop, CA I turned east and saw a sign that said welcome to ancient pinewood forrest, next amenities 98 miles.  The sign lied twice as I never saw any pine trees, and it was close to 200 miles to the next gas station.  The climb up the mountain was steep and the wind was rough. I had to add weight to the sidecar as the wind was trying to lift it and slow down to 15 mph on some of the grades. Other than that it was a nice ride.  I finally made it into Las Vegas and laid over a day due to high winds. 
After continuing on to I 40,  the tire on the sidecar blew out as I was entering Amarillo, TX. about 5:00 in the afternoon.  The Gold Book proved its weight in gold.  I contacted Marshall Holloway and he came with a trailer to help me out.  He dropped me off at a motel and picked me up the next morning and took me to the local Honda dealer to get a replacement.  No one in town had one and it was going to take 1-2 weeks to get one in since it was a special order.  Marshall then took me to his place where we un-coupled the sidecar and he let me leave it there until I could get back in a couple of weeks.

The Honda dealer surprised me by not requiring pre-payment on the special order. When I got there to pick it up, Marshall had already been there to check that it was mounted properly since the tire was direction sensitive. I can't say enough about how helpful and friendly Marshall and the personnel at the dealer were.
After returning to Texas,  I made my way to Waveland, MS for "Cruising the Coast". 
By the time I got home and shut down, it was mid September and 11 thousand miles later.  All in all, a great summer.

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Deputy Director Article
submitted by:
Bill & Dea Ann Gray
GWRRA Deputy Director
-Central US  




Recently, Dea Ann and I along with others from our International Team had the pleasure of working the "Fix-It" booth at Wing Ding in Madison. We were "loaded for bear" thinking we would be dealing with nothing but problems! Quite the contrary, what an opportunity to meet new people, answer questions and turn frowns to smiles! We were asked to fix bikes, fix husbands, fix sore knees and fix the weather. Folks needed help finding rooms and the service entrance as well as where to eat. We met and answered many questions from folks wearing "I'm New" buttons. Lost tickets and broken armbands were an embarrassment for some but we were able to "fix it" for most everyone.


We  believe in "service with a smile" and I'm sure the other team members will agree, GWRRA leaders are always in the "fix it" booth ready to answer questions, ease concerns and turn frowns to smiles! I'm still not sure about fixing husbands (or wives?)


Ride safe and see you somewhere!


Chapter Director Article
Submitted by:

Tom Dierig  

Chapter Director KY-G




You would think that a single guy, who lives alone, would have plenty of space. That is not necessarily true. I have a two-car garage but only one car. No problem you say. Well, there is a problem. I have a lot of tools. Half of them are in the basement and the other half are in the garage. No problem you say. Well, there is a problem. Besides the car and the tools, there is also the motorcycle, the cargo trailer and the camper.


What should I do? Add onto the garage? Build a shed in the back yard? Wait a minute; I can just stack the cargo trailer on top of the camper. No, that would be too difficult. Well, maybe not. After thinking about this for a week or two, I came to what I thought was the best solution. A winch!!!


My idea was to mount a winch in the garage ceiling to lift the cargo trailer above the camper. I searched the Internet for ideas and started looking for a suitable winch for my project. I found that for $100, I could purchase an electric hoist rated at 440 pounds. My next move was to weigh my trailer to confirm the actual weight. A quick ride to the lumberyard verified what I needed to know. Loaded, my trailer weighed in at 300 pounds. Now, I had to find all of my components rated at 440 pounds or more.


My intention was to use three lifting cables. I build a metal frame that I could set on the ground and roll my trailer onto. I then put a metal cable on each end of the frame next to the wheels. My third cable was attached to the tongue of the trailer. Instead of positioning my winch in the ceiling, I attached it to the garage floor on a stand. I did this so that the winch would be visible to me as I was lifting the trailer. This would allow me to stop it immediately if I saw any problem with the way the cable was rolling up.


Now I had the lifting frame in place and the electric hoist secured to the garage floor. Next, it was time to install cables and pulleys. I selected 3/16" cable and wire rope pulley blocks with swivels. All of these were rated well above 440 pounds. Several penetrations had to be made in the garage ceiling for this installation. My cable route went up from the trailer, above and across the ceiling and back down to the winch on the garage floor. Of coarse, I had to beef up the roof trusses to accommodate the added weight. I had also suspended chains from the above the ceiling. This would allow me to transfer the weight from the winch to the chains after the trailer was lifted into position.


There were a few mistakes made and more than a few obstacles to overcome during this project. However, I was very happy with the way things turned out. The end result was well worth the effort. Total cost of the project was under $300.



Remembering A Member/Officer
written by Ed Price as interviewed with Dauna Hamilton

The picture to the right shows Dauna Hamilton holding a quilt she made from her husband's favorite t-shirts he wore before he passed away June of 2012.

JB Hamilton was a Volunteer Member of our Event Management Team and their Security Manager for many years. Previously he was an Area Rep, State Director and Regional Director since he joined GWRRA December, 1982.
Dauna explained she had been working on the quilt for about a month and a half, on and off. It was a labor of love using 25 of JB's favorite T's. She told me how hard is was at times to continue as there were so many wonderful memories of the places and events they visited, that she had to put the quilt "down...but never away... at times" as she would experience some sadness.

Some of JB's favorite T's were his Motorcycle Rider Course training shirts as he was a GWRRA and MSF trainer. Both also really enjoyed going to all GWRRA's events, Thunder N Sparks, as well as going to Bike week and the Iron Horse Saloon. JB always sent me a hat from the Iron horse and I still wear the hats in remembrance of him to this day!

The quilt is 5 squares by 5 squares and each square is 12" x 12". Dauna has the quilt hanging on a quilt rack in the wall in her home now. 
Another Member Story:
submitted by:
Gene A Hanselman
Member #135067, Chapter OH-D3

Ahhhh the good life! That's what I imagined for the first 62 years of my life working for the future and retirement. I could go hunting, fishing and motorcycling any time I wanted to. There would be card playing with friends and eating out at my favorite restaurants. I could watch ball games on TV and visit my grandchildren anytime I felt like it. I could go on extended vacations to cool places and never have to worry about being anywhere at a specific time. BULL! Boy was I in for a shock!


Yes, at 62 I retired as planned, but nothing else is remotely close to my expectations with life. First and foremost is my health. I have deteriorated far worse than I ever thought possible. My diabetes is out of control, my heart disease has increased and my arthritis has become more crippling. I don't have half as much money to spend as when working and I find myself sleeping more and more due to depression, inactivity and less worth. I can't afford gas at today's prices so I don't travel near as much as planned and the "Honey Do" list increased daily, until she kicked me out. Retirement, Huh!


Friends that retired have the same problems and some worse. We all have specialists we consult and the appointments are always at the most inopportune times during the week, like when my team has a day game. My medicine has side effects that prevent me from driving at night, I can't go over 2 hours without going to the potty and I can't get comfortable or sleep except in my big recliner or behind the wheel of my truck. I don't believe the Golden Years are fun or exciting. My parents warned me about this but I was to naive and didn't believe them. It doesn't matter anyway, what will be, will be.


The first option we all have is to take better care of ourselves. We should all go to bed at decent times every night and get a good nights sleep. I never went to bed until after the late shows were over or fell asleep in the easy chair or on the couch, where I slept until it was time for work the next morning. I felt I was sleeping in a valley of fatigue when I awoke. Second option is to eat properly. Breakfast was never on the agenda, toast and juice was gulped down and a quick shower and then off to work. After a stressful morning with appointments, stupid co-workers, dumb bosses a quick burger and shake or a candy bar from the machine was devoured and then, back to the grind for another 5 or 6 hours. Then a late, cold supper and another night at the boob tube. The third option is exercise. The trip to and from work is always a fiasco, fighting the traffic to get home and go to whatever concert, play, recital, ball game or practice the kids may have. Not quite the exercise we all have in mind, but we are active. We still believe that after we go through this crappy lifestyle for all those years, we will then be magically rewarded with a life of Camelot, after 60. We plan, daydream and do considerable investing in our future, only to have it all shattered by some unforeseen freakish happening which we had no control over. Whether it be Mother Nature, an act of God or some damn Politician screwing with the economy, we get the shaft, and such is life.


If you invest in stocks, bonds or any chattels, recession or a depression hits. If you have IRAs, 401 K's or other annuities, the company restructures, sells or files chapter 11 or 13. It is a lose, lose situation. The only true way to happy retirement is to be wealthy, become wealthy or die before retirement.


Retirement finds us all having to make choices as to what we must choose to do for excitement, enjoyment and relaxation. Normally it will be only one thing or event that will suffice, because of the economy. I have chosen motorcycles and hunting. I enjoy riding very much and after the initial investment it is a cheaper mode of travel and I get to see the sights on some pretty cool trips. I stay in motels along the way and enjoy nice places to eat. I always ride safe and meet some interesting individuals. I plan my trips but never over plan. If I get to where I'm going, fine, but if I stray off course, that's alright too. Even if I don't get to my destination, it was still a great, memorable and unforgettable trip for me.

Retirement is different for us all and is an important part of life. It must be planned and regimented throughout our entire working life. Best laid plans often fail. Just count your blessings, be grateful you're retired and live each day as if it were your last.
Dream Bike
Submitted by:
Claude Roberts,
Member #375419
Member since 11/2013
Juneau, Alaska

I got my dream of a bike in October 2013. Living in Juneau, Alaska, we do not have many roads to travel on. From one end of the road to the other end is only 44 miles now - It used to be only 39 miles. If we travel all the roads in our town, there is only 110 miles total. We have over 200 miles of trails though.

Anyway, I like to ride and I have now ridden for 53 months in a row in our town. Yes, we get lots of snow and ice but if we watch for it, we can usually ride a day or two in the winter months. I keep our drive way clear of ice all winter so the Wife and I will not fall down.

Getting my 1991 Gold Wing in October did not give me any time to take it on long trips so short trips was the normal until May 23, 2014. Seven of us bikes left Juneau on a State Ferry traveling to Skagway, Alaska, which takes 6 hours. When we got off the boat in Skagway, it was 110 miles to Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada. The first 35 miles is all up hill around lots of windy corners. The bike just sailed through the curves to the top of the mountain, then it was up and down the hills from there to Whitehorse, where we spent the night.

One thing I forgot to mention was I had a total hip replacement 10 weeks before the trip. The ride was beautiful and no pain riding at all. I could not believe I was riding such a fantastic ride.

On Saturday, we left early and went south to 22 miles from Watson, Lake, Yukon to a wayside stop called Nugget City. Population in the winter is maybe 4? The ride took about 6 hours with a couple stops for fuel and walking around.

When we arrived, I was in such good spirits. I still could not believe I had such a great ride. I had a Honda Shadow Spirit that I had sold to purchase my Gold Wing. There is no comparison to the two rides. I had always wanted a Gold Wing since they first came out and by now, I know why.

On Sunday morning, we went on in to Watson Lake, Yukon, where we fueled up and spent an hour in "Sign City" where people bring signs from their home town and put them on posts around the place. It is amazing to see the places where people are from.

After fueling up, went north again for 22 miles and then headed down the Casiar Highway to Jade City, British Columbia - It is about 85 miles one way. After arriving there, one couple went on south towards their destination and the rest of us went back to Nugget City.

On Sunday, we left early again and headed back to Skagway, Alaska passing from Yukon, Canada, to British Columbia, back into Yukon, Canada then back to British Columbia on a beautiful partly cloudy day and arrived in Skagway 3 hours before the Ferry left for Juneau, Alaska.

The trip was only 763 miles long but I got to know my 1991 Gold Wing and by the time I got back home, I really loved the bike. Every thing on the bike worked. My cruise control, CB radio, radio, and the fuel mileage, which I averaged 38.6 mpg, was satisfactory for my first trip. I can not wait to go on another longer cruise before long. I guess I should state that I am 73, and this is my 6th bike, starting out with a Hodaka when I was 14 years old and rode the Rocky Mountain trails from middle of California clear to the Washington border for the next couple years. My next bike was when I was 28. Then when I was 35, I purchased two, one for my son and one for myself. My 5th bike was the 2008 Honda, which I bought new in 2009. I made two long runs on it. One to the Gulf on Mexico in 2009, and in 2011, I put on 11, 764 miles going through Canada, to Maine, then down through New York, Pennsylvania, across country through Texas, to New Mexico, north to Montana, then west to Oregon, and back north to Alaska putting over 40,000 miles on it before I purchased my Gold Wing. Now I want to do the same trip with it to see the difference - Can hardly wait. Next year for sure.

Here is a special letter received from a very special Member/Officer. I wanted to share it in this months Wingin' It. Peter Russell has been a very instrumental influence in helping GWRRA expand its membership overseas, especially in Europe, for many, many years.

We thank you Peter for spreading the friendship and camaraderie of GWRRA around the world!

Please respond to me here with your thoughts on this idea or any other subject you would like to chat about. 

>Hello everyone over there in USA and GWRRA in particular. The time has come for me to communicate the changes forced upon me in my worldwide travels, and to North America especially.


Due to the advancement of years, and slightly impaired health, insurance has become an unaffordable luxury, for both car rentals and travel cover.  I have been searching the market for suitable substitute without avail. Therefore, I am letting you know that this Wing Ding is likely to be my last.


I am expecting to fulfill my role at WD in Madison, also will be bidding you all a long farewell, but continue to fill the role as RD - UK.


I know the past 10 years have been full of fun amongst the GWRRA membership, and many, many lasting friendships have been made. I have visited some in their homes several times, and indeed a few have come over to stay at my home, such is the fraternity GWRRA has become.  


I think we have been fortunate in gaining Dan Sanderovich to take on the role I lead for some years, and am pleased he came forward at the right time.


As you may all recall, I had an especial partner in the person of Lesley Kennedy during the early days as Director of Global Affairs, and am bound to say how the family of GWRRA gave me considerable comfort when Lesley unexpectedly passed on. 


Now I have married Julia, who has also been accepted into this great family, for which I thank you all for your unstinting support given to her. So finally, here I am giving you due notice of my intention to stand down from the Directors meetings after this year, and gradually recede into the role at long distance.


I give my very sincere best wishes for GWRRA and its future, and thank you for enabling me to convey the slogan of "Friends for Fun, Safety and Knowledge" around the World.


Ever in my memory,  Peter Russell.




Former Officer Profile
submitted by:
George S Augustas
Life Member #071135

My name is George S. Augustas. I joined GWRRA in 1991; now a Life Member. My ride is a red GL-1500SE.


I serviced GWRRA as Newsletter Editor for Chapter B, Texas (Region H) from 2001 to 2010 and Chapter Director (same Chapter) from 2007 to 2010.


The picture is old, but it is my favorite one.


"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -Benjamin Franklin


(This is a new feature in Wingin' It.   We asked you to send us your profiles last month either as current or former Officer of GWRRA. Please send me your profiles and picture here.) 

Member Benefits of the Month


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