June 08, 2011 GMT
8th June

Out of touch for a while...but still going strong. Mobile phone Kerrputt! Torrential rain between Bayeux and Reims put an end to that, and internet access limited at campsites. Done 6 nights camping, 2 near to Reims.
Normandy visit to all DDay beaches was interesting, especially the Pegasus bridge site, Gold and Sword landings. Also visited the American Utah and Omaha beaches. Lots of wannaba GI's...mostly French dressed up and driving Jeeps. The tapestry at Bayeux is the longest scarf you've ever seen...Sue would like it.
Moved on Sunday to Reims...long ride in pouring rain. Reims very historic site...found it expensive to eat out there, Euro15 for noodles that was just a snack. Tuesday arrived at Verdun...lots of WW1 sites nearby. Staying in hotel to dry out, and searching for unlocked mobile phone without luck. Verdun is nice town, staying right in centre. Chatting with Aussie guy touring on borrowed UK bike...he's fed up of the rain too. Wednesday...intend to visit the battlefield sites as it's dry today, then do the pubs here after evening meal.
Tomorrow...Luxumbourg or Germany, not decided yet.

Posted by Mike Matthews at 09:53 AM GMT
June 10, 2011 GMT

Over the last few days I have endured severe pins and needles in my left arm. It's now got to the point whereby the whole of my arm is totally numb. I cant use the clutch or switchgear, so the last few hundred km have been a bit hard on the bike's gearbox. So, thought it wise not to go futher into europe, instead headed for Zeebrugge to get the overnight ferry to Hull...only a few miles to ride home then. At Doctors this lunch...awaiting referral to specialist. Doc thinks that years of biking have given me severe white finger syndrome!
Anyway, as soon as it improves I will resume.
So, done Belgium in 3 hours. Say something nice about Belgium. Mmm. Erm. Oh, I know. It improved as the ferry left it behind!

Posted by Mike Matthews at 09:51 PM GMT
July 24, 2011 GMT
Stuck at home for now

Quick update.
Solved my connectivity problem by buying a Motorola Xoom tablet PC, so should be able to update the blog anywhere with WiFi access. Has a built in camera so life should be somewhat easier on the move. Just hope it's reasonably robust.
But...been to the specialist re my duff arm, and I need surgery to the carpel tunnel on both wrists! The right one wasn't even bothering me, so I will delay that one. I'm informed the op should be within 18 weeks, so that rules out any long trips and off road for now, though I do have a plan to get to Mandello for the Guzzi 90th bash, so will update on that later.
Cos I've sat at home pondering my next move I've spent too much time on t'internet. Result? More spending as I 'found' a nearly new Suzuki Intruder begging for a home. 1800cc of chrome and sparkling paint...not much ground clearance so no off the beaten track with this one! Got plenty of time for polishing at the moment.

Struggling to get photo to transfer...always a problem to solve...ggrrrrr!

From my PC, easier to up load photos from this rather than the Xoom thingy wotsit...this is at the Sledmere monument on the odd sunny day we have. Within my 100 mile limited range for the time being...this is one heavy beast, almost twice the weight of the BMW800GS.

And Brid south bay...here with the pillion seat fitted. Oh...that's two sunny days then. Stand by for the hose pipe ban!
640 DSC0000003.jpg

Posted by Mike Matthews at 07:54 PM GMT
June 21, 2012 GMT
UK meets (Intruder)

I had my wrist and hand surgery in December 2011.. all appears well but building up to longer trips. Range was limited to around 100 miles, dependant on clutch use...but now up to 350 miles, then I have to rest for a day or so till the swelling subsides.

So, since last blog, have only done localish trips. The Suzuki Intruder 1800 has completed two meets of the Suzuki Intruder UK club. One held in Norwich, the latest in May 2012 in Lincolnshire. Of note there was the opportunity to have the bikes photo'd with a Lancaster Bomber.
Hopefully the photos will attach;DSCF0021 (800x601).jpg

Posted by Mike Matthews at 05:17 PM GMT
Intruder 3rd Euro meet

June 1 - 3 2011 saw the 3rd Euro meet of the European Intruder Clubs held in Haro, Rioja, Spain.
I opted to miss the long ride through France, instead using Brittany Ferries Portsmouth to Santander with return to Plymouth for 191 Euros. Slept on recliner-awful, smelly, noisy- but found decent settee in piano bar to kip. Not a problem on way out as the ferry docks in Santander at 1800, so used a local hotel to get some kip...after a few jars and tapas, of course. Had met up with Dusty and Steve The Manc, then waited till following ferry came in to met Lenny and Thermo (intrudercruz gang).
Haro meet was great, well looked after by the organisers and the Dutch and German contingent who were there early. Some drinks and tapas were consumed, again.

Posted by Mike Matthews at 06:03 PM GMT

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