In 1969 I bought, brand new, a Honda CL70 exactly like the one pictured above.
With a 70-cc air-cooled single cylinder four-stroke engine, a four-street gearbox, high pipes, and top speed of about 55 mph, it was a sweet little machine. It cost me, to the best of my recollection, $430.
It was my only transportation. For more than a year I rode it daily from my parents house to college (about 20 miles each way) and to work (30 miles each way). Once a week I would change the oil, and about every 10,000 miles I would rebuild the top end-- an easy job, since the cylinder head was in the open; it cost me around $20 and took three hours, including the hour-long trip each way to get the cylinder honed.
That Honda was reliable and, for its displacement, fast. I zipped along for some 45,000 miles before the piston rod came out of the crankcase. It still looked brand new.
Before I could save enough to buy a replacement engine, I got married-- and that was that for the little Honda.
Of all the motorcycles I've owned-- and there have been plenty-- that CL70 was my favorite. And so, when I retired, I found one on eBay and bought it.
When I was house hunting in 1998 I stopped by this cabin on the lake and had a chance with Bruce Bartow, who was "renovating it."
Bruce talked up the house while I looked at sunbeams coming through holes in the roof. The house was a mess.
Still, though, it had in my opinion a lot going for it. First, it was on what I consider the best lot in Pine Lake. Second, it was a historic Pine Lake house, dating from the 1930s. That was easily determined by the living room, which clearly had at one time been a one-room cabin. There was a great fireplace and stonework, as I recall.
Now the house has been thoroughly remodeled, and it looks great from the street!
A few weeks ago I had a meeting in the West Village in Manhattan. Being in town, I took the subway to Wall Street and walked the few blocks to Zucotti Park, where Occupy Wall Street was taking place to see history being made. Here are some photos.
I had every intention of driving up to the New Jersey Botanical Gardens yesterday to take pictures. It was a nice sunny day and I figured the fall foliage would be at its prime.
Instead, I spent the day dealing with a leaky tire. I had it repaired at Sears and it went flat on the road 30 minutes later. The gorillas in the service bay had tightened the lugs of my sweetie's car far more than I could handle with the short-handled lug wrench that came with her Honda Civic. After waiting for a service truck it was back to Sears, which was by then really busy, but thankfully they moved me to the head of the line and put on a brand new tire, no charge. By then it was too late to get to the gardens.
I figured it was all over because a huge October snowstorm was moving in-- but this morning we drove up to the Gardens just as the snow was starting-- show that is dumping up to 14 unseasonal inches on the Northeast. Here are the photos:
I wasn't there, but the former residents of Pine Lake known as the Pine Lake bums had a reunion and picnic at the lake last week. People who hadn't seen one another in decades met again and had a great time.
Woo hoo, this is the weekend for the one and only Lakefest!
All weekend there will be live music, art vendors, and all sorts of food! There will be contests, tractor rides in the dry lake bed, henna tattooing and fortune telling, and a seven minute video by Melanie Hammett showing the history of the "big dredge."
So c'mon down and meet your neighbors-- and if you don't live here, c'mon down and see the folks who probably will be your neighbors after you see this place!
If you used to live here, come see how much the city hasn't changed--well, excepting the dry lake bed, of course. Soon enough there will be water in the lake again!
George phoned. He saw the driver last night. So did lots of other Pine Lake residents, who said the driving was very erratic up on Rockbridge. I called the police and the car has been tagged for towing.
As I was walking this morning I passed this car on Park Drive. It was sitting in front of George Treadwell's house, but I don't think it belongs to George (besides, he parks his cars in his drive).
The car in question is a tan or light brown Mercury.
I phoned George to ask him about it; he didn't answer, so I left a message.
What I find curious are the tires on the driver's side. The tire on the front appears to have been driven until it came apart.
The tire on the rear appears to have large-caliber bullet holes in it.
I find it curious that the car's there.
As soon as I publish this I'm going to send out a message on Pine Lake Announce and phone the police department.
Here are some fall photos I took two years ago at the New Jersey Botanical Gardens.
It was Saturday, Halloween, and we were about to go for a drive. My new (new for me, it was used; I bought it on e-Bay) digital SLR arrived just before we were going out the door. Fortunately, the battery was charged.
Facebook has an active group for former residents of Pine Lake. It's called The Pine Lake Bum. It has 179 members.
All sorts of one-time Pine Lakers have checked into the group to share old memories and photos.
Despite a concern that the lake will still be empty, The Bums are planning a reunion at the Lakehouse in October. Sounds like fun!
Here's a representative message:
Did anyone other than me struggle riding a bike up those Spring Dr hills to get to Hogan's [Grocery]? I needed a Coke to recover, particularly when I was carrying a carton of empty bottles to sell for the Coke--LOL
Hogan gave you 2 cents a bottle for empties but charged 3 cents for deposit--OUTRAGEOUS--LOL
Here are some photos of the lake bed, taken the second week of August. Despite trucks leaving full of dirt every few minutes, despite the thumps coming from the lake, despite all the soil that's getting moved around by those dozers and cranes, things don't look much different than they did in late July. I'm sure one day soon I'll walk down to the lake and it will all visually make sense.
(Late note: I walked down to the lake today (25th August) and it did make sense. Post will be up tomorrow)