I arrived in England 3 weeks ago. I first spent a few days in London, seeing a few of the sites and then spent most of the time since then in the lovely little city of Norwich, staying with friends. Part of that time was decompression – I’d just come out of a rather hectic time, finishing my MA and dealing with a bunch of other stuff just before I left. But part of the time was also setting up the next phase of my trip, which involved buying transport, which to me, meant only two-wheeled transport. With this transport I planned to travel around Europe.
I had decided I didn’t want to get a sportsbike – not so comfortable for long trips. However, most of the bikes available here are sportsbikes. I did look at some custom bikes (Virago’s etc), but decided that I didn’t like them. So, I decided to get a larger cc scooter, and ended up finding a 98 Honda 250cc Foresight.
There were several reasons for getting a scooter, especially comfort and luggage space. The other reason was nervousness – I haven’t been riding that long, and I have managed to come off twice, so I was a little nervous about getting an unfamiliar bike and riding it around some pretty unfamiliar places. Even so, the first day or so out on the scooter I was fighting terror and I’m still not completely over the nerves. But it’s getting better, and I’m starting to get the joy back.
Ironically enough, I’m not really nervous about the traffic, and am doing fine with driving on the other side of the road and roundabouts and all that fun stuff. Driving here is actually sane – people seem to drive better, and there’s definitely more two wheeled traffic, so people are more aware. There’s also motorcycle parking fairly available and usually free. Oh, and one other thing that’s interesting – they have a anti-theft procedure available privately called datatagging – the company places little tags on parts of the bike – the owner doesn’t even know where, but then if the bike is stolen and parted out they can find the parts. Pretty cool.
Anyway, here’s some pics of the trip so far.
My new scooter
Wet coast on warm-up ride.
Me at Holkham House – yes I’m in full gear on a scooter – it’s rainy, and the gear is warm! Not to mention safe.
Motorcycle parking in London