A diary blog, covering details of the initial planning for our Round The World motorcycle trip in 2008...
Boy, do I need a holiday... work has been fairly manic over the past couple of weeks since I returned after the 2 days off following our wedding. Whilst I was in work for 3 days after the last blog entry (returning on the Wednesday after we'd done the rounds, telling our families we'd got hitched...), the following weekend we were off to Wales for Tracy's trip to the BMW off-road school (for details, see her diary). That kept me away from work for the Monday and Tuesday, so that was another 3-day week... so last week was the first 5-day week for a while and it's kept me busy... and then my work laptop crashes today (Tuesday) just as I was working from home and getting somewhere... all work will be lost as they rebuild it tomorrow... not a happy bunny!!
Anyway, enough about that. There have been a couple of developments that might be of interest. First, I've been spending money. All in a good cause, as I found a pair of Touratech Zega panniers for my bike on ebay... just the ones I wanted and I got them for a couple of hundred pounds less than new, so I'm pleased with that. Then I splashed out on a new MP3 player - a solid state one with capacity for additional memory cards as my iPod keeps crashing due to vibrations on the bike. Am now loading as much of my music onto it as possible (it's got 8Gb of space so I should get a reasonable amount on there). I've also bought a power lead so I can wire up the bike-to-bike radio on my bike, allowing us to try them when we head off round Eastern Europe in a couple of week's time. These radios are supposed to be much better than the cheap ones we've used previously, but as always, I'll reserve judgement until we've seen how we get on... and at the weekend I bought some new tyres for my bike, ready for the trip...Finally, we bought a set of adjustable levers (brake & clutch) for Tracy's bike, as her delicate hands (!) are too small to reach the standard ones comfortably - just need to find time to get in the garage and start fitting all this stuff now!
So now we'd better curb the spending again as we need to get focused on our savings!
On Saturday my family had arranged a bit of a party at my sister's house, so we popped over - forced to take the car as Tracy's foot is still too swollen and painful for shoes, never mind bike boots. At least that made it easier to transport the remains of our wedding cake over to share with them! When we arrived the house was festooned with "Just Married" banners and balloons, apparently for us (Nikki and John are resisting the urge...) - and the house was full of kids - mostly my grandchildren, I think! The bouncy-castle in the front garden was a neat touch, even in the rain, as wet children filled the air with shrieks of laughter, whilst inside the adults made polite conversation and began trying to make a dent in all the booze Nikki and John had laid on (including several bottles of champers that deserved a better toast than I gave!). All of this was of no interest to my 2 youngest grandchildren, George and Alf(ie) (Danielle insists I should call him Alfie, but I prefer 'Alf') - who were engrossed in playing with the toys brought from my elder sister Kim's house (she's a full-time childminder and part-time saint)...
It was really nice to see all my family together in one place, and to watch my mum's face as she presided over 4 generations of the Beattie clan (me and my 3 siblings; our 7 children and my 4 grand-children [yes, I'm the only grand-parent so far!]).
It had been our intention to camp in Nikki's garden to give the tent an airing, but as her daughters and their friends we camping out, in a tent the size of my house, we took the opportunity to grab a spare bed inside... the heavy rain having nothing to do with our decision, of course!
And so after that hectic weekend, we look forward to another one. This Thursday we head down to Wales again, as I'm booked on the BMW Off-Road School course on Friday and Saturday... just hope I have better luck than Tracy, especially as we're off on our holidays just a week and a half later!!