Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA

Update: Alrighty, I didn’t want to do it but I had to, I got out of the little hellhole I was in. Did it by doing a similar thing that AMGtech did and I rented a truck. However, I wasn’t about to leave the scooter in PA, so I got a U-Haul.

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Sadly, the smallest available within 40 miles was a 15 footer. Oh well.

Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA
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Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA

Here’s where I was stranded for roughly 4 hours:

Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA
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I’ve passed Lordstown, nearing Cleveland:

Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA
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Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA

I’ve learned a lot of lessons, no particular order:

1. Even if a bike is mechanically sound, think about everything that can go wrong, prepare for them. When I was with atfsgeoff and chuckles, they asked if I needed any tools, somehow tire repair never crossed my mind. In this case, had I picked up a can of fix-a-flat this would have been a much happier and much cheaper post.

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2. While taking advantage of an emergency for a deal seems like a win win, don’t. Stay home, wait for things to calm down. While travel isn’t restricted, you can still infect people.

2A. Even if you don’t care about whatever the emergency is, remember that services like towing, recovery, and roadside assistance may not be available. Or worse, police will ignore you.

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3. Buddy system. If you must buy a vehicle long distance and bring it back with you, bring a friend. Even if that friend ends up as helpless as you, at least you won’t be alone.

4. Have a backup plan. This is the first time I’ve ever been stranded so far from home and so far away from my support system that literally nobody could help me. Thankfully I had just enough money to swing this U-Haul.

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The sale of my carby Suzuki and the Vespa project should cover the truck and then some, so I should be just fine.

Thanks to Chuckles for their awesome generosity and Oppo Discord for the U-Haul idea! <3

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Perhaps annoyingly, my work sent out an email an hour ago that effective Monday, coming into work is optional. You can opt to not work and still be paid. No actions will be taken against you for doing so. I could definitely have waited until Monday for a proper repair, but such is life.

ETA: New new email just out. They’re retracting the “you’ll be paid matter what” thing. It’s now “you’ll be paid until you run out of PTO”. Someone must have performed a cost analysis. lol

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Finally, I’ll probably be going quiet here once I get home. I spiraled so bad last night I legit felt like I deserved to freeze on the side of the highway to do everyone a favour. That’s a feeling I haven’t had in a long while. So, I need to take a break, try to be better to myself.

When I come back you’ll hear all about how the Burgman is the coolest big two wheeler I’ve ever owned.

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Peace, and take this post as a reminder: Don’t be me. Stay home.

—— Original ——

I wish I had a witty title but the truth is a harsh reality.

Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA
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I bought atfsgeoff’s girlfriend’s Suzuki Burgman 650 yesterday. I made it over a quarter of the way home before I noticed the scoot felt really “wobbly”. Pulled over to check it out and it was a flat rear tire. Unfortunately, the place I happened to pull over at was 5 miles from the nearest town with any services.

Commence panicking. I first examine the tire. I see a really deep crack, but no clue if that’s where the air came out.

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Next, I realize the place I pulled over is extremely dangerous. It’s the crest of a hill with a narrow shoulder. I decided to get to safety by limping to the nearest exit, 2 miles. Bad move.

Illustration for article titled Im NOT Stranded in Western PA
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PA state trooper does a slow roll by me. I flag him down with my lights and horn, he doesn’t even hit the brakes.

I call up my insurance, they tell me they can’t help because my roadside coverage hadn’t kicked in yet. I call a couple tow companies, they tell me they can tow me or give me a ride, but they won’t touch the bike.

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The effective date on my coverage is 3/22, so I just decide to wait the two hours until my coverage kicked in. Called insurance again and they say I have to have the coverage for 24 hours before I can use it. Bad move.

Fine, I’ll just pay for a tow. Spent an hour blowing up the phones of a list of tow companies, either no answer or I was told they were “too busy” to help me. I guess towing stops being a thing around midnight?

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Another PA state trooper passes by going a few mph, I flag him down, he ignores me.

At this point it’s 1am. I’m cold, I’m tired... and apparently I’ve waited too long to get help. “24 hour” emergency roadside assistance apparently isn’t a thing in the world of COVID-19.

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I limp it to a hotel 3 miles away. 5 miles limping the tire was enough to shred it. If the tire was recoverable when I first stopped, I definitely screwed up.

And now because my series of stupid decisions trying to save money, I’m stuck in the middle of nowhere. Nearest friends are several hours away, can’t rent a car, and no motorcycle shop is open until at least tomorrow, if not Tuesday, if at all. There aren’t even Gambler 500 teams here. I’ve never felt so alone.

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At this point, the only way I’m getting home in anything resembling a timely manner is by renting a U-Haul. It’ll set me back every dollar I have in the bank, but it gets me home.

I hate myself. I should have never done this. Was supposed to be a fun weekend with an epic road trip. The opposite has happened. The trauma this will inevitably leave behind will ensure I never buy a vehicle from across the country ever again.

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