I’ve commented before that our local forum schedules a monthly Pie Run to somewhere in the State with the sole purpose of likeminded individuals getting together to enjoy lunch and a slice of pie. We claim we are in pursuit of the perfect pie but really it’s a chance to get together and swap lies and half-truths. Heck I even heard a couple folks telling what sounded like true reports of rides, well actually it was what really happened to certain riders, other than themselves. These reports usually followed after the “other” rider told their version of the events.
The month of July found the scheduled location to be in Edom, Texas which is located in the Northeastern part of the state. Edom is located near the western edge of the Pineywoods, east southeast of Dallas just below the Interstate Highway that runs 1535 miles (2470 km) from just outside Kent, Texas to Florence, South Carolina.
Edom, at the crossing of Farm roads 279, 314, and 2339, sixteen miles southeast of Canton in southeast Van Zandt County, is the third oldest town in the county. It was first established several miles from its present site in 1849 and organized as a post office called Hamburg in 1852. In 1855 the post office moved one mile south of the present townsite. There it was renamed Edom for the name given to Esau in the book of Genesis. Local saloons filled with lumberjacks, freighters, and traders as the community became a stopover on the Porter's Bluff and Tyler Road. Sometime later the town was moved again to its present location. By 1860 it had a Baptist church, a Methodist church, a hotel, a Masonic lodge, a sawmill, a tanyard, a wagon factory, and a boot, shoe, and saddle shop. The Edom schools, which opened in 1866 with children of former Indian captive Cynthia Parker in attendance, enrolled 130 pupils in 1904. By 1876 a Grange was formed, and local farmers responded to worsening 1880s farm prices by forming a chapter of the Farmers' Alliance at nearby Red Hill on November 20, 1885. By 1914 the town had a cotton gin and four general stores. Railroad service failed to reach Edom, yet its population grew from 150 in the 1890s to between 200 and 300, where it remained from the 1920s to the present. Edom was an independent school district until 1966, when it was consolidated with Van. Artisans in pottery, silver jewelry, glassware, macrame, and leather crafts who settled in the town in the 1960s began Edom's annual arts and crafts fair in 1972. The community was incorporated in 1966 with 300 residents but lost its post office in 1976. In 1988 Edom had three businesses, the frontier Red Hill cemetery at or near the townsite, and an estimated 277 inhabitants. The population was 300 in 1990.
Ok, enough of the historical stuff. . . LET’S RIDE
July 28th finally arrives and I meet up with half of my regular posse at our normal meet up spot to fill the tanks and go over a little of the route planned. A co-worker I had never met before (are they really co-workers if you’ve never met them before?) showed up to ride with us and one of the first things I hear from the posse is them telling Mike to “be prepared, Tony laid out the route so we are probably going to take a wrong turn or ten on the ride.” With friends like that, who needs enemies? Maybe they haven’t got use to my sense of adventure, be sides, if we hadn’t made a wrong turn or ten, there would have been a lot of roads we had never seen before. But they seem to point out there are planned roads we have never seen even after planning to ride them multiple times. I wonder what their point is. Oh well, I know how to get to Huntsville to where we were to meet up with Debbie, at least she never points out my wrong turns.
We roll into Huntsville and find Debbie waiting and Dave has decided to join us for the ride up to Edom where he will then head out to the monthly campout several do when heading to the Pie Runs. I think the actual reason they want to camp is to gather more information to spread at the next Pie Run about what the “other” rider did after a few adult beverages. One of these days I will have to join their little party to see for myself some of what goes on around the campfire. I don’t think they would have needed a campfire in Texas at the end of July, oh well, to each his own.
We did have one near incident on the ride up after stopping in Grapeland to unhydrate, rehydrate and stretch our legs. I noticed Debbie in my mirror waving me over as we were entering the highway so I headed for the shoulder to see what was going on. Just before I came to a full stop I heard her hit her horn and as I looked back she motion to carry on. I wasn’t sure what had happened but it must be good now.
The trip up was pretty uneventful, just riding some great farm roads and seeing some of what God Blessed East Texas with. And I’m happy to report; NO WRONG TURNS on the trip to Edom. I did find out the reason Debbie was flagging me to the shoulder of the road back in Grapeland. It appeared that my kick stand was not retracted completely but as we were moving to the shoulder she took a closer look and saw that it was completely retracted so she motioned me to continue the route.
The video slideshow appears better in full screen, well at least on my computer it appears better that way. . . (you might have to click on Vimeo on the right side of the video to get full screen access)
The weathermen & weatherwomen were wrong on their forecasts for our arrival time. They were reporting the temperature would be 99 DegF (37 C) with a Heat Index of 102 to 104 DegF (39 to 40 DegC) but it was only 91.4 DegF (33 DegC) with a Heat Index of 100.1 DegF (37.8 DegC). As we were loading up to head south again the temps had increased a little, 95 DegF (35 DegC) with a Heat Index of 103.2 DegF (39.5 DegC) so it was just another summer day in Texas. Of course the road surfaces were more like 120 to 130 (48.9 to 54.4 DegC) or more.
Time to eat, The Shed comes highly recommended so I looking forward to what they have to offer. I guess the hype outperformed the The Shed. The food was good, but nothing near the “Best” home cooking this side of Grandma’s house. Maybe it was because I ate one of the daily specials instead of off the menu. I’ll eat there again if the chance arises but I don’t think I’ll go out of my way to eat there, too many other places to try.
To be continued. . .
You're just jealous because the voices only talk to me.
Well we had told all the stories we had so it was time to head back south and get a few more stories for next month. . .
As I stated before, Dave left our group in Edom to head to Purtis Creek State Park located between Edom and Gun Barrel City so our group was now five bikes headed south. With the temperatures a little on the warm side we decided we would make a few stops along the way to rehydrate, unhydrate and cool off a bit while catching up on what each other had been doing and what our plans are for the next pie run.
Our first stop was just a few miles down the road at the Henderson County Courthouse in Athens, Texas.
Since Athens was just a hop, skip and jump southwest of Edom we decided we would have our next break in another 30 or 40 miles which would be Palestine, Texas. We are starting to sound like world travelers with stops in Athens and Palestine (PAL UH STEEN).
As we were passing thru Palestine I noticed Mike and Debbie had moved over into the left turn lane and stopped, looking back over their shoulders. Well I thought I must have missed a café or something and Ed and Tony F had turned in there so I doubled back just as Mike was heading back up the road so I followed him and saw Tony F heading in the same direction turning into a parking lot where Ed was. Now I was curious because there was no business near where Ed was sitting and it looked by his actions like he didn’t have a flat tire or other mechanical issues. As I pulled up beside him he had just grabbed a Red Wasp that had flown up his jacket sleeve. Once the wasp was dispatched we continued on in our search for some place to stop for our break. A town the size of Palestine has got to have 4 or 3 Dairy Queens but I couldn’t locate one. Dairy Queens are great places to stop for a coke (in the South all soft drinks, sodas, pop’s or whatever they are called in your area, are called cokes), Dilly Bar, ice cream cone or sundae. I didn’t find a Dairy Queen but did see a Whataburger so I pointed our group there. As we were getting off the bikes I told the others I was looking for a Dairy Queen, there had to be several in Palestine but Whataburger would have to do.
While we were sitting there enjoying our cool drinks Dave texted Debbie, said he had decided to not campout. The night before his dog had scratched his good eye and it was starting to bother him. Dave said he had thought the scratch was external to the eye but now it was feeling like some of the eyeball had also been injured. A second text came in that he had called his wife and told her to be ready to take him to the urgent care clinic or the hospital’s emergency room when he made it home and was asking where we were. After informing him of our location we heard he was further down the road and didn’t feel it was in his best interest to turn around and join up with us or wait on us to catch up with him. I haven’t heard anything to the contrary so I hope he made it home ok and there was nothing seriously wrong with his eye.
As we hit the road and moved about half a block to the first stop light, Debbie pulled up beside me and pointed down the road. About a block from where we stopped at the Whataburger sat a Dairy Queen. Remember what I said earlier about Debbie not pointing out my mistakes? Well I take it back. Our route from Palestine will take us to the farm roads outside of Oakwood at Debbie’s suggestion. These are some fun roads and I’m looking forward to running them again, too bad the GoPro battery had died as we were loading up to leave Edom. Oh well, zoom in on the return map around Oakwood and follow our route in the road level view. Well somehow I missed the cut off to FM 1511 and my planned route south of Oakwood. I guess I was in the zone, yeah that’s it, I was in the zone and enjoying the road. Well to my defense, I’ve never run the road in this direction; I’ve always been headed to Oakwood instead of leaving Oakwood on these roads. Well it wasn’t long before I realized something wasn’t right with the road, I was seeing some scenery I had not seen before but I knew where we were headed so I kept pushing ahead and would pick up my planned route to the east of Centerville. Remember I said there were roads we wouldn’t see if I didn’t make a wrong turn? Well there are roads we would never see if I did take a turn I was supposed to, so onward to our new adventure. So we head east of Centerville and pick up 1119 with the plans of hitting OSR (Old San Antonio Road) and taking a short break in Midway before heading down 247 to 980 in Huntsville where we had met up with Debbie and Dave.
Well like they say, “Plans are made to be broken.” As we are tooling down 1119 we begin seeing deer and horses along the side of the road and most of them move away from the road as we approach so all is good so far. Topping a hill about a mile south of the “B” marker on the return map I notice I only see Debbie and Ed in my mirror so I pull over and look for Mike and Tony F for a little while but I don’t see them. A few moments later a couple semi’s and a pick up pass by us with no indication there was trouble back down the road. Ed commented that we were getting close to the range limit on Mike’s bike so maybe he ran out of gas. I told them I would go back down the road and check on them and would relay the information back to them, there was no need for all of us to head back just to have to turn around again when Mike and Tony came pass, but that didn’t happen either. A mile down the road I saw Mike and Tony at an intersection looking at Mike’s bike. As I arrived they said the throttle cable appears to have broken. We were pretty sure there were three possible causes, one we could fix and two that were beyond road side repairs with what we had available. So we checked for the fixable, the throttle tube had separated in the housing and just needed to be reset. Guess what, that wasn’t it. We didn’t take the whole throttle assembly apart because we were 99.99% sure either the tips on both cables had broken off at the same time (unlikely) or the throttle tube had broken at the cable connections, both of which we did not have the tools or parts to repair. I had texted Debbie and Ed what I found. . . both Mike and Tony were ok and Debbie replied they were heading to the gas station and would then double back to our location. When they arrived they brought ice cold bottles of water with them, man was that water ever good! (That’s Southern for pretty dern good)
Well the whole time the three of us were sitting on the side of the road, 24 or 8 cars passed and not a one of them so much as slowed down to see if we needed any help. I mean, here we are in the middle of NOWHERE, Texas where folks are supposed to be friendly and no one so much as turned their head to look our direction. Well a few minutes later our other two riders show up and now we have more folks stopping to see if they can lend a hand or offer suggested repairs. What changed? Did taking my jacket off have this effect on everyone to now cause them to want to stop? That must be what happened, it couldn’t be because Debbie and Ed showed up, could it? Oh well, we may never know the answer to that question.
Multiple attempts were made to make contact by phone with very limited results. We could get text messages from time to time but trying to call one of the tow services that Mike had a plan with were almost impossible. We were finally able to get in touch with the preferred provider and they were working to find a tow truck that would come out our way. The local services they contacted were willing to come out but would not deliver the bike and Mike to his house as the service was supposed to cover. They all reportedly said they would come out but would not deliver the bike to his house without a loaded return trip. The service finally contacted a tow truck company in the Conroe area that would come out but it would be another two to three hours before they made it. We had already been trying to get a tow for the bike for a little over 2 and a half hour. In the meantime Debbie had located a friend or ours (he happens to own the TWT website) and he was headed our way with a truck and trailer to carry Mike home. Ed and Tony had already headed for home; there was no need in all of us waiting on a tow to show up. Shortly after they left was when Debbie got in touch with Scott. A few minutes before Scott showed up Debbie noticed I had a dark visor on my helmet and asked if I had a clear one. I had to admit I had taken the clear out of the trunk a week or so earlier and I guess I had forgotten to put it back. After a few minutes she again asked about the visor and how I expected to see on the ride home. So against my plans, I left the scene too to try and make it home before it got too dark to see with the visor down. I had gotten about 9 miles down the road to the gas station when Scott would have passed, I never saw him on my route home which was the same as he was taking to come to our rescue.
I arrived home just as it was getting too dark to see out of my visor, good thing LEO wasn’t on Interstate 45, Black Betty was screaming down the road, not quite to making light poles look like a picket fence but they would have looked like the spacing for a barb wire fence. She sure does like to be allowed to air it out every now and then.
I spoke with Debbie on Sunday afternoon, Scott showed up about 10 minutes after I left (he must have passed the gas station while I was filling up), they loaded both bikes on his trailer and trailered them both home.
That was one long day.
Next month’s Pie Run scheduled for Marble Falls, Texas.
*** Update on Mike’s bike. ***
Both throttle cables broke approximately 1 inch (2.54cm) below the end of the cable cover(?) so there was no road side repairs short of a new set of cables. Mike did say it appears the idle cable had been broken or near a complete break for a period of time.
You're just jealous because the voices only talk to me.