I was up at about 06h00 after the cat jumped on the bed but seeing as how my alarm goes off at 04h45 every weekday, that was a long sleep-in. I was excited and keen to get going and by 07h00 I was showered dressed and ready to go.
The sky was partly cloudy, the sun was already shining and I thought that it looked like a great day for the bike, not too hot, a relief from the heat wave we had endured for the past six weeks or so.
Jan came outside with me to see me off and to take a couple of photos, there's hardly ever any photos of me in my blog entries!
Colours jacket on, engine warming up, say goodbye to the little woman and get out on the road.
And he's off!
The first thing I noticed, which I should have taken care of before I left, was that my helmet visor was filthy! I couldn't see very well, not what you want for a four hour trip. In beautiful conditions I rode through to the Engen One-stop on the R27 and washed the visor, started up and headed off again and what a difference being able to see makes!
I pulled out of the garage and blasted up to the R45 towards Malmesbury with the intention of going along to Mooreesburg and through to Riebeek. While I was cruising that old saying came to mind; "Don't ride faster than your Angel can fly." and I thought well my Angel's gonna have to do 140kmh because that's where I wanted to be, I wasn't going to do any low-flying today.
As I was riding east, really starting to enjoy myself, I became aware of quite a heavy, dark cloud ahead of me and soon the sun was gone and it felt like rain, then I rode into the edges of the storm. For the past few kilometres I could see that the road was wet, so I was catching up to it.
Rain?! For the past six weeks or so we had been complaining of heat-wave and now on the day that I want to go to a rally it starts to rain!
I pulled over, switched off and got my rain suit out of the pannier, one thing that experience has taught us is to get the rain suit on before you really need it!
I got back on the bike turned it on and thumbed the starter button and it dragged and wouldn't start! Shit now what? I tried again, worse, flat battery! Can't be, I tried again, now it just clicked! I couldn't believe it, what do I do now? It was 07h45, too early to phone the bike shop. I got off the bike and walked around it, got back on and tried again, no that didn't help, still wouldn't start.
Eventually at about 08h00 I managed to get hold of Monica from the bike shop and told her of my predicament, "Could Craig maybe come out here with a new battery for me?" She told me he would phone me back in a few minutes.
By then it was really raining and I thought if I could only get it started I would ride home and get the battery sorted out later, one more try; I switched on and thumbed the button and it fired up! I phoned Monica back and told her I was on my way. I had a very wet ride back to the bike shop in Vredenburg where Craig tested my battery, there was no problem, it was fully charged and showing a good reading - WTF??!!
Back at home Janet said to me "You were not supposed to go on this trip!" Was this intervention? It has happened to us before, on more than one occasion, makes you think doesn't it?