Bags packed- Check
Bike ready- Check
Excitement built to fever pitch- Check
Enough space for my tooshie to perch on the back with all of the luggage- Checkish
Lets get something straight here.
Before I continue, I am not sure you realise that we are heading to the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy Races. We are travelling via Liverpool which is roughly 12.7 miles (according to Google Maps. According to my internal directional skills, I do believe it is closer to 50 miles) away from the security of The Hobbit House.
This journey requires skills that are nearly beyond my scope.
Below is a picture of what I am dealing with.
I must perch ontop of the Yellow Thunder, balanced between two pannier bags, pushed forward onto My Husbands back due to a large black rolled bag digging into my lower back. Add a computer, entertainment gear and survival gear clipped to my back inside a backpack which is forced higher up my back due to the black rolled bag, all pushing my warrior headgear forward. A tank bag magnetized to the tank that has all of the camera gear lovingly nestled between My Husbands arms as he manouvers Yellow Thunder through thousands of cars, along goat tracks, stopping and starting at millions of traffic lights, dodging potholes, pedestrians and ensuring we get to the ferry intact.
With the bags precariously positioned on the Yellow Thunder, a square inch of seat left for my “Nanny-ass” to perch, warrior headgear positioned causing steaming and sweat to run into my eyes, feet clinging tightly to the footpegs, knees and ankles gripping the bike, we left the safety of the Hobbit House, following The Organiser on his MVAgusta (still an awesome bike), starting our adventure for 2016.
Worry starting to set in. Have I packed enough clothes to make it through the next two/three weeks? Have I packed enough socks? Have I packed enough items for my Husband? Did I pack everything he expected me to pack?
Oh well- if I have not done my ‘one job Sal-you have one job to do’ properly, I will certainly hear about it.
But before we head off towards the ferry, those who are travelling with us, all meet up at Honda SP1’s house. Anticipaton of seeing and hugging Honda SP1’s wife (Ms Giggles) in real-life and not via Facebook causes a flutter of excitment in me, whereas My Husband longingly waits to see what new toys He has purchased.
Dismount, embrace each traveller ( Aprillia Mille Flat Black/Red, AprilliaTuono White/Silver, Aprillia Tuono White/Blue, Suzuki GSXR750, Honda CBR 900 Fireblade) re-acquaint ourselves with each other, marvelling at how no-one has changed in a year (except me-older, fatter and less atheltic), meeting Triumph 675 R again and now Triumph Street Triple (Poppy), (who is his lovely wife and yes she is riding her own bike) who had popped over to say Hi (they are travelling on tomorrows ferry) and being embraced in Ms Giggles arms. Things were starting to feel normal and familiar once again.
With guarded awe, not daring to breathe, each of us wiping our shoes on the ‘Enter at your own Risk’ mat, wiping our sweaty hands and dripping brow on a towel that was whiter than snow, we entered the inner sanctum of Honda SP1’s lair.
Please note: the following description is written through the writer’s observtions with just a tad of elaborate licence employed.
This is his amazing ‘toybox’ where everything is so spotless you could eat off it, if food was allowed in here. The air is conditioned to ensure that it is even and constant at 23 degrees, day and night. The idea of inhaling within this sanctum is terrifying and can only be undertaken if you have cleaned your teeth and devoured a breath mint. Even the ride-on-lawnmower is spotless. Oh hang on, I can see two blades of grass hanging precariously to the spotless black shiny tyres. The carpet is spotless, spiders are not game to poke a toe into this shed without the fear of a swatter swiping at it. The idea that dust could form in here, or dustbunnies would be game to enter – is ludicrous.
Sitting magestically under a dust blanket, made from the finest lambswool and spun gold, on heated carpet squares, is the latest toy.
(Ok girls read the first five words and jump to the next paragraph- gentlement you may continue to read)
A magneficent red 458 Ferrari with carbon ceramic brakes, Brembo calipers that take up half of the wheel, the engine situated in the rear of the car (to me a dumb idea as where do you find the dipstick? Ok that is one of the only words I know that lines up with whatever is under the hood of a car). White carbon fibre seats (now this is an important item that will be referred to in later posts) which are never touched by anything other than white seamless, button-less, stud-less pants and white tops. If color is introduced on these seats the hospital had better be rung from speed-dial as Honda SP1 will surly have a heart-attack. Skin is never to touch any part of the interior of this beast. Ms Giggles has entered this beast once, white tracksuit pants (turned inside out so the branding ‘Juicy’ does not inprint onto the leather) and white top. Her hair tied in a white turbin so no residue from her hair is left on the headrests. She was handed her handbag which was placed on the floor, zipped closed, secured between her feet so that only the base touched the car. White kid gloves must be worn every time the door handle is touched. The paintwork is never touched, if a finger-print appears, bells and whistles sound off and a direct link to MI5 is dialled with a swat team on standby to smack offending hands away. The original number plate bumper bar thingy tied to the wall as it has been replaced with one that is more exotic and fitting for a designer car.
If you are reading this in disbelief, please note that this male has a pristine white Honda SP1, white Castrol leathers that fit like a second skin and even the sun is jealous of the shine that eminates from them, a brillaint hot pink warrior headgear and never leaves the home without hand wipes, plastic wrap and hand-held vacum cleaner.
So after every male in the group has drooled over said ‘new toy’, obviously NOT in the presence of this ‘new toy’, but outside away from the toybox and in one particular section of the garden, we mounted our beasts to head to the ferry.
Travelling over 50 miles to the ferry, dodging pedestrians, stopping at traffic lights, keeping the lead bikes in sight so we do not get lost, strange smells eminating from the bike infront of us, passing a carpark where a group of passer-bys are standing on the seats of a convertible waving frantically (yes I unclenched my left hand from the tank and waved back, stupidly smiling inside my warrior headgear), smiles beaming back at me. Little did I know that these gorgeous people belonged to Aprillia Tuono White/Blue. Unfortunately he was too intent on looking where he was going and missed seeing them waving frantically. We finally made it to the Liverpool ferry.
Now this can be an overwhelming experience where thousands of riders, various makes, models and types of bikes, trikes and whatevers are all lined up waiting to board the ferry. Wonderfully colorful warrior headgear, various motorbike gear, pannier bags, backpacks, all forms of luggage all congest the road leading to the gate of the ferry.
This is where reality kicks in and you know your adventure has begun.
As we join the long que, a familiar smile and wave greets me as I look around the colorful apparition before me.
Curls and Aprillia Mille Flat Black are there. Now we have come full circle. Now we have caught up with almost all of the lovely people who join us on this adventure. The amazing thing is, as I found with Miss Sunshine, there is no awkward silence. It is like we had a coffee yesterday and picked up the threads of our conversations from a year ago. I can honestly say I do not have this experience with a lot of people, but I do have it with these wonderful people.
Curls and I board as foot-passengers which means we are onboard often 15minutes before any of the boys arrive. So we casually spread our gear around so that we can all sit in one area and catch up.
As a side-line, Green Jacket from previous blogs, will now be referred to as Red Leader- Aprillia Mille Flat Black/red. Anyway Red Leader has a strange dislike of one of the greatest MotoGp riders in history. Valentino Rossi *sigh*.
I am unsure as to why these feelings have emerged, but because of this, he is constantly ribbed, hassled and stirred about these feelings.
If you look closely to the monetary note that is being held above his head, you will see that it is a Valentino Rossi currencey.
And yes the shinanigans begin.