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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Change of plans . . .

Like most things in life, there's no "one size fits all" when it comes to motorcycles.

The ideal bike differs for each person, but needs to be one that feels perfectly comfortable, where you become part of the machine and it part of you. Where maneuvering is simply a matter of seeing where you want to be, an almost subconscious shift of weight or a slight push on a handgrip. There are enough things against you as a motorcyclist - the road conditions, weather, other traffic, roadworks and wildlife - that you can't afford to add fighting your ride into that mix.

My 980km round trip to visit my cousin in Roma made me realize the V-Strom DL650 will never be that bike for me. It's a beautiful bike - smooth, powerful, responsive- but much too high and heavy for someone of my height and weight. Being barely able to reach the ground on a bike that weighs three times more than me makes stopping awkward at best, dangerous at worst.

Dulacca Truck Stop: unleaded for the big beast, lemonade for the smaller, water to pour over my head.
Rinse, ride, repeat . . . 
So, I've decided not to ride the beast to Sydney, as riding any distance on a bike you're uncomfortable on is a recipe for disaster. Riding that far and into a major city on this bike would be stupid of me.

Unfortunately, there are no lower bikes available so instead of heading out today, I'll relax beside a friend's pool and recover from my ride back from Roma yesterday. Through a heatwave that Queensland is experiencing that required constant water stops and cool down periods before facing the road and Australia's road trains again. At least it was too hot for the 'roos to be on the roads.

Killaroos planning road rampage . . . 
There is a bike in Sydney that may be suitable for my stay in the city and I'd like to ride out to Watson's Bay and up to the Blue Mountains while there, but I'll wait until I can try it on for size before booking this time. Returning the V-Strom will cost me money, but that's better than having it cost my life or health.

Instead, I'll fly to Sydney in the morning and check into my fancy Airbnb apartment at Darling Harbour. I think I'm going to the opera in the evening, and have five days there to visit with friends and explore my old stomping and sailing grounds.

The adventure doesn't end, the transport has just been adjusted . . .

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