Welcome to my blog, these are the ramblings and musings of an (upper) middle aged biker and if you enjoy braais, (barbeques) beers and motorbikes then hopefully you will enjoy what Janet and I do; we do lots of braais, we drink lots of beer and we tour South Africa on our motorbike, which at the moment is a BMW R1200RT. Join us, read about what we do and please leave us your comments.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Toy Run 2012

I was really looking forward to the toy run on Sunday, anticipation had been building through the week and bad weather forcasts notwithstanding, I was going, it was to be my fifteenth consecutive run and I did not want to miss it.
 Saturday the weather was abysmal, strong winds and intermittant heavy showers, I hoped that it would all clear up through the night and give clear weather. Linda came up from Capetown on Saturday morning and as she was staying over Janet used that as an excuse to duck out of the ride, she doesn't mind riding in the rain but hates strong winds.
I got things ready that evening, the bag of toys and games fitted easily into the pannier but I wanted Spidey to ride up front. He looked so cool there in the windscreen that I briefly entertained the idea of keeping him!
Sunday I was up early, the sky was partly cloudy with some heavy grey clouds around but there was no wind, it was pretty cold though. I said goodbye to the ladies and rode out of town just after 07h00, happy to be out on the bike, I was comfortable with a jersey under my summer jacket.
I filled the tank at the Engen One-Stop, quite a few bikes already parked, and went to get a cup of Wimpy's famous coffee.
Willie and his good lady arrived, their BMW bedecked with fluffy toys. As the garage forecourt filled up with bikers there were many more blasting past on their own or in small groups.
Meet and greet, talk crap, drink coffee and kick tires - I love it. Talk about kicking tires;
look at this extreme modification to a Hyabusa, a home garage modified extended swingarm and fat back tire, when I asked my brother what it was like to ride he said "Kak!" (An Afrikaans slang term for "not very nice" or "shit")
We headed out just after 08h00, Div in front setting a fast pace as we settled into our staggered formation, between 30 and 40 bikes blasting down the R27 at 150 to 160kmh  under a cold grey sky. It was a lovely ride, a few isolated spots of rain made no difference to my enjoyment and an hour later we were cruising into the outskirts of Capetown. Most of the guys pulled over for a smoke break but Frank and I carried on to the Viper Lounge for a pre-arranged rendezvous.
Leaving Spidey to look after the bikes we went in search of beverage, also our friend Janet was meeting Frank to ride with him on the toy run.
After a brief break we were back on the go, Frank with pillion and baby(?)
The mass ride is a little tiresome but rewarding with the hundreds of people lining the route to wave encouragement, there is a lot of clutch-brake-foot down-foot up-gear change-clutch-brake, watch the youngsters on scooters who have very little experience or road sense whilst keeping a wary eye on the temperature guage, but in the end it's all good.
The traffic department did a great job keeping the traffic flowing with dedicated lanes for the bikes, here's a lady cop looking cool on her Honda ST1300.
Riders continued pouring in to the Maynardville gathering area, it is a very large site but it was soon bursting at the seams.
The first thing we do is throw our toys into the trailers, it doesn't take long before the two huge trucks are overflowing with toys for underprivileged children. An amazing thirty years of toy runs started originally by the Italian Motorcyle Owners Club and now a nation-wide event - bikers are good folk!
A really good band was churning out classic and heavy rock numbers but we were on our next mission, the beer tent!
The beer tent was already doing a roaring trade, at the toy run if you want to see friends you just hang around outside the tent, everyone goes there! We saw many friends from rallies and day jols but over the past few years more and more non-bikers are attending the toy run just to get involved in the whole "feel-good" atmosphere, and possibly to mingle with the bikers too.
We wandered a bit, visiting the trade stalls, here Martene and Taryn greet people at the "Superwheels" stand, very soon the online biker magazine will be launched, for which yours-truly will be a regular contributor, I will let you know as soon as it is online.
Pretty soon it was time to leave, we'd had our fill of the trade stalls and the beer tent and it was back to the Viper Lounge for a toasted sandwich,
I parked the big red BMW outside the front of the Harley Davidson and Victory dealership to lend the place of touch of class, the toasted sandwich was delicious and good value.
We'll be back there next Saturday for the fourth birthday celebration and also a Victory motorcycles open day, maybe I'll take a test ride.
It had been a very good day, I love being involved with the Toy Run and with the wind pushing from behind I had a fast, enjoyable ride home taking exactly one hour from the Viper Lounge to my front door, my fifteenth toy run done, I hope I can do another fifteen?

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