The weather was indeterminate and I still remembered last weekend’s abbreviated ride. But we had been planning to hit the Daffodil Festival in Camden for some time, so we loaded up and hit the road anyway. Besides I was still craving a fried pie from Burge’s, so we were going to come back through Magnolia and Lewisville and take care of that piece of business.
Leaden clouds covered the sky, with the occasional patch of blue peeking through. The meteorologist promised there’d be no rain, and she was right. Temperatures were in the mid- to upper 40s as we pulled out, so we were in full leathers.
By the time we got to Hope, a mere 35 miles up the road, we had to find someplace to thaw out. We got some hot coffee, got rid of some we’d drunk that morning, thawed out a little and got back on the road. Heading east on Arkansas Highway 278 for the 50-mile run into Camden, we saw a little more of the sun. I could feel it warming up my black leather jacket and chaps, but it never stayed with us long enough to completely knock the chill.
We made it to Camden and discovered that many employee groups from Lockheed Martin were set up in tents and giving away free food. I never fully understood why, but that didn’t stop me from chowing down. Man! Those folks can cook! Stuffed like a tic, I figured Burge’s was going to miss out on my patronage this trip too.
We missed the Civil War re-enactments earlier that morning, but spent several hours checking out the food, vendors, and the bike show. I kept thinking that as the day wore on, the sun might come out more and it might warm up. It didn’t warm up much.
By 3 we were ready to head back. We gassed up in Camden, so I didn’t plan to stop until we got home. By the time we hit U.S. Highway 82 East out of Magnolia, I was starting to shiver. As we pulled into Lewisville, I started to think about how good a cup of coffee would be, so I flipped on the blinker, hooked a right into Lewisville, and headed for Burge’s. As full as I was, I found just enough room for a fried pie.
I’ve ridden in colder weather, but this time I hadn’t put on quite enough gear. Thank goodness for the pie and coffee.
— Guy Wheatley