Monday, 18 May 2009

Meet Delilah...

So, if someone had told me that I would be a biker chick one day, I wouldn't have believed them! I've always been a bit of a "petrol head" with an interest in cars, but never, never bikes. Too noisy, too dangerous, ridden by greasy people...

Just about everyone in Italy has a scooter of one dimension or another, and we were lucky in having a fairly big one that we used to nip about on. We did the odd longer trip, and it was fun, but we were a bit restricted on how far we could go because of the comfort factor. The engine wasn't huge and used to struggle with two a little bit.

The "madness" really started last year on holiday in Corsica when we saw how many people were there on scooters and motorbikes. The first pangs of envy started to creep in and we started tentatively talking about getting a Yamaha TMax, which is a sort of hybrid between a scooter and a motorbike. We visited a few showrooms but never went as far as a test-drive. Now, I don't really know how it all got started, but at some point, my other half, C expressed an up to now latent passion for motorbikes, the BMW R1200GS in particular. I wasn't really interested in all this boy talk and didn't pay much attention, until we went to the showroom for a look... Well, first of all there's the smell. I've always liked the smell of new cars, but new motorbikes smell even better. Then I came face to face with "The Beast". This GS machine was a work of art. A beautiful, big, shiny, powerful, metal beast that unleashed something deep inside...

So, away we went, talking about maybe getting one next year, and we'd see... These conversations became a daily occurrence, as did drive-bys of the showroom, until C decided to take a test drive. Could he be thinking of buying one sooner than next year? I think the test drive clinched the decision. Unfortunately the bloke in the showroom didn't seem that enthusiastic about selling us a bike, so we decided to try another dealer that had been recommended to us. After an hour talking to the salesman and his lovely elderly mother who also worked there ("that's a beautiful bike you're thinking of buying there, kids"), we'd come away with an offer to give us more for our trusty scooter than we ever could have imagined, and a financial deal that was obviously aimed at giving you no choice whatsoever on whether or not to buy the bike. It was a really good deal put together by BMW. Off we went to "think about it". A week later we were in the showroom signing the papers. A week after that and the bike was ready for collection.

And so arrived the lovely Delilah, over 200kg of heavenly beast! I let C go to work on her and build up confidence before insisting I hopped on the back. With our sparkly new biker gear, I finally got the opportunity to go "two-up" this weekend. I always enjoyed riding on the back of the scooter, but a motorbike gives you a certain kudos, and what with the other bikers lifting an acknowledging hand in greeting as they passed, there is nothing, nothing like it. I asked C what it was that made travelling by motorbike as opposed to car that more attractive. He voiced my own feelings on it. You're outside in the fresh air, you can see everything around you, the colours are brighter, it's open and you don't feel claustrophobic... so many things. It lifts my spirits being on the back of the bike. I love it. I never thought I would.

So, we're off to Corsica on her at the end of June, a dream fulfilled. We now have to decide what we can take in two panniers and a topcase! No support vehicle for us! Trips we have planned in the future are North Cape and Morocco, and we're currently debating whether to drive her up to the UK in August... We're thinking of starting a dedicated blog, so I'll keep you posted!

1 comment:

  1. Wendy

    Very sorry to hear from your Mum that Delilah was apparently stolen to order just before you went on hols. Hope you enjoyed the trip anyway.