When I got back from travelling, one of my most immediate goals was to buy a new bike. But not an average bike and certainly not a 125cc. I dreamed of my future bike while riding through a sand storm on the way to Lima in Peru (the bike had slowed to walking pace, and I couldn’t see more than 100 metres ahead). At this time I imagined that my next ride was going to be the largest cc moto I could afford, something with about ten times the power of the 125cc.
So with what little money that I had when I returned, I went out and bought a BMW 1150 RT, an older model with a lot of kilometres on the clock, but still, a beautiful ride, something like driving a luxury car. I did a bunch of country rides and a long ride to Sydney with my friend David on the back, but the love affair with the BMW was to be short lived, as it turned out to be a Charleton and a one-trick pony.
In reflection, I’m am not sure what I was thinking, buying a BMW whale, it was a trophy bike for some other game. It was impossible to maintain, difficult to get between the fat traffic, and tricky to park on the footpath without maiming children. What finally ended the affair was a mere flat battery. Replacing the battery required taking the fairing and petrol tank off, a task that took me half a day, and even then, the battery cost as much as a Llama.
So after three months, the BMW was sold for a considerable loss, and I purchased a bullet proof Suzuki GS 500, the third one I have owned, the most reliable, robust, and minimalist bike around. I spent three years riding a GS 500 around London and I have owned two in Melbourne. I ride it almost every day, and it is socially flexible, unlike the BMW that was stuck in a fast lane to tears.