April 19, 2003 GMT
Planning &Preperations

We returned from a RTW three years ago having travelled to South East Asia, New Zealand, Fiji, Cook Islands, USA & Canada. Extended travel was always something Julie, my wife, and I had wanted to do. We'd always done the foreign holiday thing, but somehow two weeks in Corfu it was never enough. In 1998 we sold the house, both took career breaks, bought two RTW air tickets and flew off into the sunset. We had a great year. On our return we set about buying another house and resuming our careers. Rather than satisfying our lust for travel however, it soon became apparent that the urge had intensified rather than diminished.

For a while we tried to lose ourselves in our careers, the new house and our other passion, motorcycles. Various new bikes followed in quick succession. I told myself I was in search of the perfect bike. I now realise that I was bored, bored with the reality of life and the weather in the UK and each new bike was merely a distraction. We both longed to be Somewhere else.

Luckily, for us at least, property prices in the UK were spiralling last year when we decided to sell up and hit the road again. As much as we had enjoyed our first RTW we realised that this time we wanted something more adventurous. Travelling by motorcycle seemed the obvious way to go. Flying is great if you just want to get to your destination, but you miss out all the places in between and any sense of distance is completely lost. I'd guess that your already aware of this or you wouldn't be on this site.

Having decided we were going the next step was to decide on which bike would be best for us. We've ended up with a BMW R100GS. As soon as I saw the bike I knew it was the one for us. It was a '94' model with just over 7000 miles on the clock and had unmarked 'Marakesh Red' paintwork. Jules loves the seat and says it's the most comfortable bike I've had. The bike has been heavily modified to cope with the trip. Ernie at 'Overland Solutions' is a genius and has done most of the work (and sorted out out quite a bit I mucked up !) ..thanks again Ernie

The route has changed countless times but at the moment goes something like this: France, Spain, Portugal (for the HU meet in July) across to Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, then back up to Hungary, Rumania, Bulgaria, Turkey then hopefully, Iran, Pakistan, India, ship to KL or Singapore, Malasia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, back to KL or Singapore then ship to Perth, around OZ in no particular direction then who knows what! We haven't set anything in stone and as we don't have any time restrictions we can stay longer if we like somewhere or move on if we don't.

We leave on the 20th of May and will post post reports here every month or so.

Posted by Bob McDarby-Feast at April 19, 2003 06:26 PM GMT

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