Detours : Life, Death and Divorce on the Road to Sturgis

3.19 (21 ratings by Goodreads)
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Author Richard La Plante had always wanted to ride cross-country to Sturgis, South Dakota. To the famous motorcycle rally that began as a small gathering of the Jack Pine Gypsies MC in 1938 and grew to become the Mecca for the American motorcyclist. But, by the age of fifty-three, still bruised from a divorce, newly remarried and a father for the first time, he thought the trip was destined to remain an armchair fantasy.

Then came the summer of 1999. Again his wife was pregnant-with a second child. The family was temporarily homeless, he was suffering from writer's block, but a Big Dog motorcycle that he had been designing by phone was finished and ready to ship. With no place to live, a new wife and child, another baby on the way, a blank computer screen, a teetering bank balance, a twenty-five thousand dollar motorcycle ready for delivery, and a mind that felt parboiled, La Plante made a decision. Escape. Out of the armchair and into the saddle.

On a borrowed bike, he set off for the Black Hills of Dakota. Waiting at the end of the ride was a week-long party, a cast of outrageous characters, a sea of chrome, steel, and rock'n'roll, and his Big Dog motorcycle. But the real story is the miles in between. Moments of crazed introspection while stranded beneath a highway underpass in Iowa waiting for the floods to stop, the sheer euphoria of watching the sunrise in the mirror with the wind in his face and the bike roaring west, the anguish of being hopelessly lost on the wrong side of Chicago, all add up to the metaphor of a life's journey.

Told in La Plante's humorous and self-deprecating style, Detours is a wild ride, all the way home.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 140.7 x 226.1 x 24.6mm | 453.6g
  • United States
  • English
  • 0765303248
  • 9780765303240

Rating details

21 ratings
3.19 out of 5 stars
5 19% (4)
4 24% (5)
3 29% (6)
2 14% (3)
1 14% (3)
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