BMW R1200GSA vs Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Only four days left.

Hitchin and our exit preparations.

Sunday 19/5/13

We had heaps of work to do to prepare for our trip home. We now had all the gear from the bike, and our original suitcases that we bought with us at the beginning of the trip. There was way too much stuff to fit into the suitcases so we have to freight some stuff home.

It all got a bit too hard, so we went shopping instead. We popped down to the local shop to buy a little bit of food and there was a fair happening in the park across the road. We ended up buying a couple of bags of lego blocks to add to our excess baggage. 

We also spent a bit of time looking at the Ferret Rescue Centre's ferrets. We actually learnt a bit while we were there. The ferrets were great, but I don't think our dogs would get on very well with one if we took one home.

Back home we sorted through our piles of stuff and decided we would need four boxes sent home. If there was any space left over Carla could pack some of her gear in there. Everything has to be perfectly clean to go back to Australia, so the rest of the day was spent scrubbing and cleaning things like helmets, boots, riding gear, and luggage. There wasn't a bug anywhere on our gear by the time we'd finished.

Once that was done, the order was placed with Voovit,a freight company that delivers boxes to you, then picks them up when you've packed, then delivers them at the other end. We should have boxes to pack tomorrow...

...then we fly out on Wednesday night.

Monday 20/5/13

We found out that Voovit's box delivery is due one business day after the order is placed, so they'll be here tomorrow. After the boxes are packed we may have to drop them off at the depot. We don't really want to leave four large, heavy boxes in Carla and Barbara's house.

With a bit of time up our sleeves the cleaning continued. 

I can understand Aussie quarantine wanting to inspect stuff entering Australia. You wouldn't believe how many bugs were on my helmet. I took the visor, peak, vent covers and so on off the helmet and found bees, flies, and all sorts of critters in there. What a mess. After removing the Aussie flag stickers that were peeling on the edges (I can't believe how hard it is to buy a decent Aussie flag sticker that will stay on and not fade in a week.) I gave the helmets a really good scrub. At least our helmets will fly (no pun intended) through quarantine.

Now I have to do the same with our our riding gear, boots, gloves, and camping gear. 

In the evening we went to a pub and surprised a friend for her birthday. Heather let us stay with her for a few nights very early in the trip and was a bit disappointed when we told her wouldn't be able to make the pub for her birthday. She certainly had a sparkle in her eye when we walked up behind her and said "Happy birthday."

Heather with a drink, and a specimen bottle.

How much trouble is there here?
Suzanne, Zoe, Heather, and Jo.

Paul, Heather and I.

It was good to catch up with our pommy crew for a goodbye drink before we left.

Tuesday 21/5/13

Our Voovit boxes arrived around 9am and the game of Tetris packing began.

Voovit. Great idea and heaps cheaper than post.

Can we fit it all in?
Check out the box in the foreground.

What do we need to take home with us in our suitcases? What do we send home in the boxes? What don't we need for a few months? Once we had a rough idea we started stacking stuff in the boxes. After a few hours of this brain numbing torture our friend Jo arrived, and we went to the pub for some welcome stress relief.

When we returned home the boxes were shoved to one side and we just chilled while Carla slaved away in the kitchen creating another great feed.

A few drinks finished off the night and Jo headed home. Saying goodbye to friends really is the worst part of this trip. We've met so many fantastic people on this trip and knowing we probably won't ever see them again is a real downer.

Tomorrow we head for Heathrow and Emirates will fly us home to our "normal" lives again.

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