BMW R1200GSA vs Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX

Monday, 26 November 2012

Sunshine, blue sky, a quick ride, some more renos, and a farewell party. What a busy day.


I woke up this morning and the room was very bright. When I peeped out through the curtains I found a clear blue sky and bright sunshine. It was time to ride.

I'd made an eBay purchase and I was supposed to pick it up yesterday, but I got so tied up in the dining room changeover that I just couldn't manage it. Boy am I glad I didn't go. Today was so much nicer for a ride.

I'd bought another Pacsafe Lidsafe helmet bag. These things are great. They are a waterproof helmet bag with a stainless steel mesh in the liner and a security cable. You can leave your helmet in the bag, and lock it to your bike knowing it will still be there when you get back.

We now have two Lidsafes, and a large and small Pacsafe. The Pacsafes will be used to secure our soft bags to the bike as I don't want to lose another tent, or anything else, off the bike. All we need now is another small Pacsafe and we're right.

It was perfect riding weather. It was nice and cool (about 10 degrees) so the bike ran beautifully. There wasn't much traffic around, and about an hours ride in each direction was just right. It's funny, a year ago, if you suggested we go for a ride in sub ten degree temperatures I would have thought you were mad, but with the right gear it's really enjoyable. I was a bit hesitant on spending so much on gear, but it really is worth every cent to have the right stuff.

When I got to Surrey it very dark and cloudy, and it looked like a big storm was rolling in. I did feel a few spots of rain, but that was all. Then I was back on the bike and enjoyed sunshine all the way home.

Thanks for the helmet bag Sam. It will be put to good use.

Back home it was back into renovation rescue. We had a lot to do and people arriving later in the evening for our "Farewell UK party". Any excuse will do. We did some good work and made it presentable before everyone arrived  We still have a bit more to do, but it's nearly there.

Our little farewell was a lot of fun. We had bought all the ingredients (and I mean all) to make pizzas and everyone had a bit of fun creating their exotic toppings.

A few photos from the night:

Suzanne and Carla practice T and T. 

Carla and Jo practice I don't know what. 

 Mike practices his pick up lines on Magda.

 Caroline and Heather just being nice.

This photo sums up Carla nicely.
Look out Australia, she'll be there next year.

Thank you time:

Firstly a huge thank you to Paul and Juliet for letting us take over your home for so long, and for last night's fun. We'll miss you guys.

Another big thanks to Jo and Jim for making the effort to drive two hours to get here, and bringing Penny. Then driving two hours home again. Thanks guys.

Bart deserves a special mention as well. He worked very hard in the kitchen all night making pizza bases and some pizzas for those who didn't want to do it themselves. Thanks mate.

We wound up around 1am as it was a work day for most the next day. This is the one part of our trip I don't like, saying goodbye to friends we've made along the way. Some we'll see again, others we may not, so it's a bit sad. We have been very lucky to meet so many wonderful people during our trip. Leigh, Aiden, Jason, Shane, and "He who can't be named" at the Isle of Man. The whole mad crew of Dutchmen at the Assen TT. Kira and Lisa in Austria. Zdenka in Slovenia. Mike in Montenegro. Yvan in Switzerland. Sam and Clare in Weston Super mare. And so, so many more.

Looking forward, I guess we have lots of new places to visit and lots more new friends to meet as well. It's all good.

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