Thunder, Thunder, Thunder

How did we become the hosts for the heinously tacky bike rally, Thunder Beach?  Wasn’t that Daytona’s shtick?  They seem to be shedding all of their mistakes and we are snatching them up one after another.  Case in point: spring break.

Come on Panama City, can we not actively pursue the seedy side of life?

You know how American’s often put Canadian flags on their backpacks when they travel abroad because they don’t want people to know where they’re from?  That’s how I feel about Panama City sometimes.

I know, it’s sad, but if regular balcony rail failures and Girls Gone Wild every March wasn’t enough, we had to open our doors (biannually, mind you) to the leather-clad underbelly of humanity: bikers.

Awesome.  Bring on the bikini contests…with tattoos.

When I was 20, I took a road trip out west with my college boyfriend and we camped in the stunning Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks.  It was breathtaking, it was vibrantly beautiful, and it was the same week as the Sturgis bike rally.

Everywhere we went, we were surrounded by bikers.  Mt. Rushmore, Devil’s Tour, Old Faithful – we were trying to enjoy nature but nature was deafened by the roar of hundreds of Harley Davidsons.

The men had beards that Father Time would envy (only theirs were soaked with beer and BBQ sauce) and the women – oh, the women – were in a variety of leather, from chaps to corsets, and let’s just say that may not have been the wisest decision they made all day.

Some things just can’t be unseen.

At 7 each morning, we’d awaken to the bikers revving their engines and circling the campsite.   What’s the deal with bikers and their insatiable need to rev?  We got it, your bike is loud, now ride away or turn it off.

A friend of mine had some bikers staying in the house next door to him a few years ago during Thunder Beach and at 4 a.m., they returned to the house and proceeded to (read: continue to) drink while revving their bikes in the driveway.  This lasted for over an hour, despite the fact that the police were called.  But citing for noise violations during Thunder Beach is like citing people for public intoxication during spring break – where do you start?

The office where I work is on one of the main thoroughfares the bikers use as they ride from one sketchy bar to the next (because evidently, you don’t need to be sober to operate a motorcycle…).  So every Thunder Beach, we hear the incessant thunder, thunder, thunder all day long.

All.

Day.

Long.

And this is why we pray for rain.