Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Three weeks to go

It's funny sometimes, we all plod along quite happy with our lot, never thinking about our mortality, well you wouldn't would you? It's all sort of far far away in old age. Like old people and grey hair and bits falling off. "I'll worry about that later, when I'm old I reckon"

That can change when you hear about someone close by who has been diagnosed with something nasty, terminal perhaps, life threatening, dangerous and something to spoil the best plans of mice and men as they say Its sometimes brought home even more so when you don't believe you're old enough for such nasty things and yet you hear of someone younger than yourself with cancer or an old mate who had a heart attack and is now gone. I'm not even the age of Ernie the milkman but yet people younger than Ernie and me are falling off the perch.

With this thought I was not too pleased to find some strange lumps (not saying where,  but rhymes with Davina McCall)  and black marks on the skin nearby which itch and look like one of those sun screen adverts on Australian TV where the coffin gets an airing as well. I can't ever remember sunbathing naked, let alone sunbathing naked standing on my head with legs apart. Well, not when I was sober anyway.

Davina McCall
Anyway the long and short of it all, is that after putting my bits in a machine which reminded me sandwich press, the operator gave me the thumbs up and confirmed the the lumps are safe. The black mark is still unknown at the moment. I'm still awaiting a doctors appointment for the above mentioned skin lesion . Would you believe, several  mole clinic places here in West Australia are booked out till September!  I'd be dead by then if I wasn't heading off to the other side of the world with more important things on my mind. So just to be sure I'm having it cut out, just to be on the safe side. Cross your legs and think of England as they say.

In recent weeks, Liquorland hate me but American Express love me. I've been spending my alcohol savings on lots of other bits, mostly spares and necessary weight additions to the bike. No doubt, some of this weight I'll shed in a few months when I realise this appliance or that widget is bloody useless and what the hell was I thinking? Then again, you never can be too prepared so I'm thoroughly enjoying my consumer spending spree. I must also add that UK prices are very much lower than Australian. All deliveries are being sent to my sisters in Scotland but from what I gather, the rolled out bed is taking over the kids room, the top box in a box is still at the front door and the little packages of spare parts resemble a Halfords display case. This means that the lack of Long Way Round type sponsorship is testing my family's dedication to their long lost brother and his silly adventures.
Tank Panniers
Oh, mustn't forget, I ordered a set of tank panniers. Yes, probably useless but at least I'll have somewhere to put everything now. These little babies throw across the tank and have enough storage for a couple of bottles of nicely chilled wine and a glass, perhaps some cheese and biscuits, maybe a beer or two.

Seriously, if I can put more weight up front, less on the rear, I will have less chance of popping an unexpected wheelie at the traffic lights. These, types of sudden wheelies don't convince anyone, despite all my attempts to pretend it was intentional. .Even the baseball cap clad, acne infested commodore wielding youth that I was escaping saw through that one.

TV Stuff
I was wondering if anyone was interested in sending me off from Perth in Scotland. It was becoming  a Billy no friends party and I was starting to pretend I didn't care but in recent days I've been inundated with a letter. Well, an email all the way from the Provosts P.A. in Perth letting me know that they'd like to see me leave. I think they mean that in the nice way. Also, I'm getting to nosey around Glamis castle, just up the road from Perth with my bike, just a few hours before the Summer Prom concert. and ... there's a highland Games in the very same place I set off from on the glorious twelfth. So, plenty of TV opportunities there then.

Better take my cameraman, sound guy and someone to get the tea. (me, me and me at the moment)

Work Stuff
That's enough about work.

Party Time
In addition to the send off in Perth, my darling wife has planned a going away do  in England. There's a serious knees up in Huddersfield on the 17th of next month. We've sent out invites and everything. So if your not on the list, complain bitterly, send me some sponsorship money or wine and I'll send you the address. Then there's a send off from Ace Cafe the week after on the 22nd.  Maybe its just me but have you noticed there's a lot of leaving events booked for this trip?

I've been asked several times if I'm getting excited. It sounds a bit strange although I am, I think I'm probably more frustrated waiting, waiting waiting. I just want to get on my bike and go. I want all the gear fixed, the bike working perfectly, the stuff all packed, the paperwork sorted and all loose ends tied up. When Ewan  McGregor said "get me out of fu##in London, I know just what he meant.
I'm sure all around me are fed up hearing about it. I find myself editing my enthusiasm, curbing the need to bombard everyone with where I'm heading, what I'm doing, whats the bike like, do I have visa's?

Seized piston
And what if it all fell on it's arse. I'ts going to be pretty sad if it all falls in a heap.

What if the bike isn't right. It has been sitting doing nothing in a Manchester garage for months now. I never put oil in places I should have. Will the engine still turn over? Have the rear suspension seals seized  as well? Will I be able to get another bike prepared at short notice?

Maybe it's time to call the garage and ask then to check it over for me.

1 comment:

  1. I sooo wish I could see you off, Steven, but
    Oregon and our kids beckon (Will be watching my daughter receive her PhD!) But be assured I will be with you in spirit (or spirits, anyway). I'm so glad the sandwich press brought good news. I was holding my breath there for a bit after reading your previous post. I know exactly what you mean in your 'health' section, as various things are popping up with us or with friends. All any of us can do is keep on keeping on, making plans and living to the max as long as we are allowed. ...And talk about accidental wheelies... did I mention the one in the rain passing the tour bus going uphill in a small Alpine village with Tina and full luggage on the back while trying to keep up with Christian? :-)