I’ve got a few quick fire posts to write while I’m still in the midst of a nice caffeine buzz.Firstly I wanted to write about my emotions for the last few weeks. They have been all over the place, massive highs as I imagine the dream of life on the road, just me and my bike. As long as I have petrol, water and food nothing can go wrong. Then to big lows as the thoughts of camping in a wood somewhere in mid France, surrounded by axe wielding rapists and murderers.
This trip is the biggest thing I have ever done. So far its just been a relatively well known route through life. I was born, learnt to talk and walk, went to school for a number of years, did my homework (mostly), saw my friends, played on a rugby team. Interspersed with all this ‘normal’ stuff have been a few little adventures, trekking in Morocco, expeditions to Snowdon and the Ashdown Forest, a couple of days spent cycling the South Downs Way, camping trips in local woodland. These all required a bit of planning but not really more than an early morning or a late night, or maybe a couple of days thinking about it.
This motorcycle adventure has been in the making for years. From watching the well known Long Way Round and Long Way Down, to the amazing trips of Austin Vince and friends in Mondo Enduro and Terra Circa to reading as many trip reports on advrider (A great site dedicated to motorcycle adventures of all shapes and sizes, I have been a member for 2 years now!) it has always been there, bubbling away, in the back of my mind. Since finishing school last summer I have spent almost a year working, saving and planning solely for this trip.
Over the last few weeks the stress and the pressure of my deadline to leave (2 days leffttt!), finishing work, ending my first ever relationship, my emotions have been boiling over far too often. Laura, my first girlfriend, who I have been with since I was 16, is now over. What with her being at Uni for the last year (so we have seen each other much less than we were used to, living a mile apart) and me paying her ever less attention while I was busy working on my bike and the trip, coupled with me now leaving for 3 months and then off to Uni myself two weeks after I return, us finishing seemed a very logical conclusion. Though in the matter of love and emotions logical is not particularly comforting. At all.
To her, if she ever reads this, she didn’t seem to much of a fan of the whole motorbiking thing to be honest, I wish nothing but the best. That was shamelessly stolen from Adele but the local radio station has been playing it 10 times a day for the last few months and it hasn’t left my head. On a side note its amazing how, when I am emotional, music and lyrics seem to have a lot more meaning.
The more I then thought about this trip, just me and the bike, leaving my family and my home, no girlfriend, haven’t seen my dad properly in months now, won’t get to see any of my friends as they all return home themselves for summer, I felt lonely. But then 10 minutes later I would be on top of the world whilst I daydreamed of wining twisty coastal roads, over looking a glorious blue Mediterranean sea, with a lunch and a swim to look forward to…..
So I think the point of this post was to highlight firstly just how big this trip is to me, and secondly that it has been a hugely emotional ride, and I haven’t even left for Dover yet.
But enough of being a girl, I am supposed to be a big hairy biker now so its onwards with preparation, in less than 48 hours I will have left for Dover with the trip of a lifetime ahead of me.
|My work place|
I would finally like to say a massive thank you to everyone at work, its been an amazing experience and the amount of things I have learnt has been incredible. I would like to say a special thanks to Sam, without who this trip wouldn’t be half what it should be, he hasn’t stopped helping me with the bike and seems to have lent or given me every bit of bike gear he possesses. The trip ultimately wouldn’t be happening at all without the job he gave me so I am very very grateful. Also a special thanks to Phil, my ‘mentor’ at work, half the time a miserable grumpy old bastard (I can say that because he’s not next to me), the other half an inspiration with his tales of cycling adventures and motorcycle trips.