Kindness of Strangers & Faith in Humanity on my Motorcycle Tour – From The Mind of McFarland music blog.
Im writing this blog from a coffee shop in Wichita, Kansas, on a brief bit of afternoon downtime on my summer tour. This tour I’m undertaking in a slightly more conventional manner – unlike my motorcycle tour in the spring! Regardless of whether or not I’m travelling on two wheels or on four, I’ve been astounded by the kindness of strangers while I’ve been out on the road. I have a tendency to be a bit of a cynic at times, and the random acts of kindness I’ve experienced from people I’ve just met on tour have done a huge amount to help restore my faith in humanity.
Since I’m all about sharing stories, I wanted to tell you one particularly memorable example of the phenomenon I experienced on my motorcycle route through the eastern United States in the spring. As a touring musician, long distances between shows is not uncommon. I have a terrible mind for directions, so when I’m on my Condor A350 I use a bluetooth headset and GPS turn-by-turn directions to guide me from city to city. The only hitch is that when running both bluetooth and active GPS, my phone has a battery life of about 5 hours. Most days that would get me from place to place, but on one fateful day on my last motorcycle tour, traveling from Norfolk, VA to Raleigh, NC, it wasn’t quite enough. Taking back roads, as I like to do when I ride motorcycle tours, the trip took about five and a half hours – which left me with my phone dead right as I rolled into town, and no directions to get me to the venue.
I parked my motorcycle in the lot of an ALDI grocery store, pulled out my laptop, and started charging my phone off the USB port. I sat there on the curb, guitar case open, laptop on the mulch, phone hooked up to it – I’m sure I was a sight! I got a few interesting looks from customers.
Right as I was about to pack up and get back on the road to the venue, a middle-aged woman, who had parked her car right next to where I had the bike, came up to me after loading her groceries into her vehicle.
“What size boots do you wear?” she asked.
“Uhhh…” I was dumbfounded, and not sure how (or whether!) to answer.
“Are you a size 10?”
“Hold on a second.”
She walked back to her car and pulled out a plastic grocery bag, containing a pair of motorcycle boots.
“Try these on.”
They fit perfectly.
“These were my father’s boots. He passed away two months ago. You look like you’re on an adventure, and I think he’d want you to have them.”
That’s only one example of the kindness of strangers I was shown on my last tour. If that won’t restore your faith in humanity, I don’t know what will!
Unleaded rhythmic alt-pop fuels singer/songwriter and two-wheel troubadour Michael McFarland’s engine. Michael McFarland in the simplest summary? Writer, Rocker, Biker, Geek.
For Michael’s Music, Cd’s, Downloads, Merchandise, live show schedule, music blogs, music videos, and everything else you want to know about McFarland, visit the Michael McFarland Website at http://michaelmcfmusic.com/