|08-08-2008, 09:58 AM||#1|
I'm a Yorkshireman thanoz
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Up North In The UK!
Honeymoon on the Duke
Reading some of the great reports on here are really cool and inspiring! Here's a tale about a trip just over two years ago my wife and I did on our Ducati ST4s.
I test rode a Honda VFR and the Duke after deciding I'd kinda out grown my CBR600 and the V-twinned Duke won hands down, I loved the throaty roar that sang from the exhaust so I signed on the dotted line!
I blinged the bike up a little with a new set of pipes, a pro-oiler (www.pro-oiler.com) fitted an auto-com system, purchased a topbox and finally a satnav system.
Once we told the family what we were doing, they were all saying stuff like; what if you fall off, what if you breakdown, what if you have an accident?? Well we shrugged our shoulders and said so what! We'll take insurance and breakdown cover, problem solved!
We took the usual precautions of plug repair kit and a few basic tools and my trusty Leatherman, first aid kit with a few plasters in and we were sorted.
I had the bike serviced prior to the trip including new rubber. £500 lighter in my pocket and we were good to go.
The bike was really heavy and I nearly dropped it turning the corner at the top of our street but I soon got used to the weight and off we went.
A few hours in the saddle and we were boarding the channel tunnel.
After leaving the train I put our hotel address in our Satnav who we nicknamed "Sheila" After 20 minutes of her "Ping Pinging" and telling us where to go we ended up telling her where too go as we got lost! Out came the trusty map and we were soon on the right road.
Our first night in France was in a town Cambrai, we had decent meal and a good nights kip. Then the following morning we set off on our way to Luzern in Switzerland. Not long had we been going the petrol light came on and because it was a Sunday the first petrol station we came across was closed!
The heat was intense and it became the norm that at each fuel stop we had to re-fuel ourselves.
We got lost a few more times, but this added to the adventure, as we came round a fir tree lined road the Alps appeared before us, it was an amazing site, truly beautiful.
We finally arrived at our hotel in Luzern
After a quick shower we had a great meal of fillet steak and potatoes and we shared a bottle of wine and hit the sack. This is the view from our hotel room overlooking the lake.
Next day we were in for a suprise as it was the longest and hardest of them all, we were heading for Venice.
Jack getting ready.
And one more of the lake before we set off.
The morning was bright with clear blue skies above and the sun was already warm on the backs of our leathers. We'd not been going long and I decided to take the long way and go over the Alps. 180 degree hairpin after hair pin after hair pin. I got a bit cocky and we ahd a very close shave as we almost hit the inside wall of one of the tunnels as it tightened as I was giving more gas. Jack put her foot down which unsettled bike and it jolted closer to the wall. Luckily I managed to wrestle it round and we came through unscaved, although Jack gave me a right bollocking!
I calmed Jack down and then had a word with myself and on we went........Just a bit more causiously. I thought we were making good steady progress and stopped by Lake Como for water and a snack and to admire the views before we rode round the beautiful lake.
Sheila was clearly enjoying the sunshine as she "Pinged" Away "Take your next left Ping Ping" She cooed. I think Jack was getting jealous because she swore at her a few times telling her to shut up. Sheila was getting on her nerves. I tried keeping neutral and calmed the situation saying to Jack that she was doing well. It was at this point that Jack said that she should have gone in one of the lakes as Sheila was taking us the long way round and telling us to turn where there was nowhere to turn! Sheila must have heard her comments and she turned herself off!
We thought we were getting closer as we'd stopped for fuel a number of times, but we didn't seem to be getting far. We had been in the saddle for nearly 12 hours and I was getting pretty tired. and was very hungary . We soon came into the outskirts of Venice and as Sheila Satnav guided us expertly to our hotel we............ Err............... Was in an industrial area!
We were both absolutely shot and the bike was overheating in the sweltering night time heat and as luck would have it as we were riding round looking for our hotel another biker came and asked us if we were lost. This guy was called Reuben and after we had a brief conversation he guided us to our hotel! Needless to say after we checked in I bought Reuben a beer and we had a chat in Spanglish
Jack was not happy!
I'll catch up with some more tomorrow
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