I spent a very pleasant day saying farewell to all my friends at work, having allowed a generouse 2 hours to complete this task, I was suprised to find that 7 hours later I had not got to see everyone. the interest in my trip and well wishes are uplifting. Living with the planning everyday, one forgets how uncommon the notion of travelling around the world on a motorcycle is. It's magic.
Now with only 70 days to go I shall have to transform my preparations list into a list of things I WANT to do and a list of things I’ve GOT to do.
However the bike is now beginning to look the part with panniers, belly plate and other goodies fitted.
Things I have GOT to do.
• Insure Motorcycle. I’m waiting for a reply from a Mexican Insurance company in California. If no joy by Monday then I’ll go with Endisliegh who have insured ‘Del Boy’ who is bound for the Americas next month.
• International Driving Licence. Issued by the RAC, I need to copy my passport first and get this posted today.
• Carnet, not really required for the first half of the journey but as I need it for the second half it must be purchased while the bike is still in this country.
• Ferry Passage. Need to fix a date soon otherwise I might not get a place.
• Air Ticket. Not so urgent, as I can always get a cheap trans-Atlantic flight and travel to Halifax by train or internal flight.
• Yellow Fever, Rabies, Tick Fever jabs. My Doctors is not licence as this is a ‘live’ vaccine, and I need a certificate of inoculation. Burnham Market (6miles) and Grimstone (20mls) may do it, otherwise it’s a trip to Cambridge.(70mls)
• Bank Mandates. Have forms, will submit next week.
• Medivac Insurance. I need to check this out still.
• Sell Maisonette. Progressing. I am confident it will be completed soon.
The following are still things I WANT to do but have still not finished.
• Spare Rechargeable Batteries. Ebay beckons.
• LED Lights. I have replaced the Tail/Stop Light with an LED version, but not the Turn Signal ones yet. Ebay again.
• Heavy Duty Rear Inner Tube.. Front acquired, looks good so I will order up the rear from Dirtbikes.com
• Touring Screen. Last time I looked there were loads of them available, now zilch!!! I will keep looking.
• Power Sockets. The standard ‘Cigar Lighter’ type offered is too big, I will visit the RS or Farnell sites and get the smaller ‘phono’ types, 4 should suffice.
• Petrol Filter. Obtainable in most motor accessory outlets, but I will wait until I get the Quick Release Fuel Line Couplers and do the job in one go.
• Radiator Hoses. Moto Bins at Sleeford do these and I will take them as spares I think, not sure yet, I may replace some when I service the Water Pump.
• Cables. As spares again from Moto Bins, but ty-wrapped along the route of the existing cables
• Brake Hoses. Not on my original list, but stainless steel versions provide quicker responses as the hoses do not expand in operation like the standard ones fitted. It’s a techie thing!
• Radiator Stone Guard. I have the mesh, just needs to be fitted.
• Heated Grips and Hand shields. Ebay here I come.
• Cruise Control. Ditto
• Oil Temp Gauge. Ditto
• Gel Battery. I have decided against a Gel Battery as they die without warning, so one of the low maintenance type instead.
• Water Pump overhaul. Moto Bins soon.
• Top Box, I am waterproofing a stainless steel tool box to see if this will serve the purpose, otherwise another trip to Moto Bins.
• Malaria Tablets. I have been advised by other Adventure Travellers to wait until I get to Mexico, where they are readily available at 12p each.
• Personal Treatment Kit. I always wondered about the view of Customs officials concerning syringes in my first aid kit, but have been advised that if I get an ‘AIDs Kit’ it’s ok.
• Pack up and go. I have seriously thought about getting a skip and junking the whole house full of ‘stuff’, but family and friends have offered storage space, so I had better get the best bits packed I suppose.
That’s it, I think. Everything else has been done, or is well under way. No room for complacency, even if my arm full of needle holes is uncomfortable.
Nurse. ‘Just a little prick.’
Me. ‘It’s the fear does that!’
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