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2770 Interstate 10 East
Beaumont, TX 77703
(409) 860-5959

July 4th
We had a nice group of riders who wanted to ride to the Neches River Front Park to join in the 4th of July Celebration, get a little exercise, lighten the  pressure on the traffic jam, save a little gas and cut down on the Ozone problems.  Did I mention, have some fun...  This is the 9th year that we've ridden to the park to join in the celebration and help alleviate the Car Crush.

     Our Congressman, Ted Poe, made a very moving speech about how our founding fathers had the courage to stand up to the greatest military power in the world and fight for freedom against tyranny.  I thought he was going to issue a call to arms- right there!  Ah, irony.  We are at an interesting period in our lives as Americans.
     Jimmy Simmons led the band and they played a some patriotic music and American Classics by American composers.  Hmmm.

     I had thought it would be nice to actually choreograph some of the music with the fireworks.
     In this land of the free, we were not allowed to bring our bicycles into the park!  Because of a SNAFU last year, we made contact with Claudie Hawkins,
to make arrangements to bring our bicycles into the park, as a group, so we
wouldn't have to worry about them.  We've done this every year in the past.  
I made contact with her a month before, she sounded very accommodating.  
Then just days before the ride, when we were to meet and discuss the W-5's
I was informed that our bicycles WOULD NOT be allowed in.  "Special Accommodations" were offered at the last minute,  but it just wasn't the same.  
Freedom was denied at a freedom celebration.  
     Our numbers were diminished by half because of this odd rule.  

     What puzzles me most is that Mrs. Hawkins knows how expensive these bicycles can be and we all know at what cost our freedom was won.  We were not FREE to bring about $7,300. worth of bicycles and accessories into the park.
Others were allowed to...
As we waited for the fireworks to begin, I counted 4 bicycles in the park
near the amphitheater.  When the fireworks began, I thought it best to go
stand Sentry by our bicycles.  On my way I snapped these two bikes IN THE PARK.

Am I bitter?  Yes.  Was freedom denied?  Absolutely!

Should there be rules to govern our society?  Yes.

What should the rule be?  NO RIDING during. . .

All we wanted to do was get there relatively early,
pick a quiet, out of the way spot, park our bikes,
toss our blankets and hang out with everyone else.

Our society doesn't know how to deal with bicycles because it doesn't appreciate them.

This is not the only incident I've encountered like this.  

Crossing at the Galveston Ferry:  They make the bicycles board LAST,
after all the cars are packed on the vessel.  Then when we arrive at the
other side, they want us to exit FIRST.  HOW?