Hi! We are Frank & Claudia DelloRusso from the Boston, MA area, proud parents of 2 great kids and grandparents of 4 fabulous, very young grandchildren (the 10 month old is in my lap at this very moment desperately trying to help me type this entry). I spent 4 years in the Air Force right after high school (where I met Claudia, in Germany) and 4 subsequent years in college, then a whole bunch'a years working for the many different iterations of the then rapidly changing "phone company", from which I was forcibly retired 6 days after 9-11. It was painful at the time, but in hindsight, they did me a big favor. Been riding bikes for over 40 years and this 2003 R1150RT is our first BMW. We joined BMW MOA just yesterday at the advice of a friend, also a member and BMW GS rider.

We bought our RT used, two years ago, with only 6K miles on it (2 previous owners), and have had some unfortunate serious and expensive problems which resulted in limited use since. But all has been sorted out (thanks to MAX BMW in North Hampton, NH) and will, hopefully, remain so.... because Claudia is now spoiled rotten and because this bike needs to carry us across the country to CA and back between mid-May and mid-July, this year. I've done some long distance riding in my younger years (on a 1972 Norton Commando (to Iowa), which I still have, and a 1984 Moto Guzzi 850-T5 (to Illinois), now being ridden daily by our son. This little round trip, x-country adventure, a "test" or "testimonial" in celebration of our 40 years of marriage (July 5th) will be our "Mt. Everest".

The motivation for this ride has been the recent loss of too many relatives and close friends, some of whom were too young to pass. One (my closest friend) spoke his dying words to me and they were as follows... "There were so many things I wanted to do...". With that, Claudia and I decided that we didn't want to leave too many "should'a-could'a-would'a's in our closet... so off we go.

The plan is to head south through NJ and PA to Front Royal, VA and take Skyline Drive and the Blueridge Parkway all the way to the Franklin, NC area. Then head west to Denver, cross the Rockies and spend a few days at Lake Tahoe. Then north to Wyoming and Yellowstone and east to SD and the Black Hills, across MN and up to Grand Marais, WI on Lake Superior (near Thunder Bay, Ontario), back down through Green Bay (must check out Lambeau Field) and then take the S.S. Badger across Lake Michigan from Manitowoc, WI to Ludington, MI. Then probably through Ann Arbor, into Ohio, across PA on Rt. 6 and into NJ, and finally home. There'll be some stops along the way to visit some family old friends.

Part of the trip west from NC includes a stop in Blytheville, AK to visit the grave site of Claudia's mother. There's an amazing Rod Serling "Twilight Zone" kind of story that goes along with this visit, but it's way too long to deliver here. Maybe we'll get to meet some of you throughout our travels, and that'd be a good time to tell it over a few cold beers.

We have a trip route planned (very limited Interstate travel... mostly state roads), but it's not cast in stone, so any advice, re: special roads, sights, places to eat or lodge that anyone would like to pass along would surely be welcomed.

Ride safe,
Frank & Claudia DelloRusso (fdelloru@yahoo.com)

P.S. Being brand new to this group, the web site and this forum, I'm not very familiar with the "process". So... my apologies in advance in the event that I don't follow the proper protocol.