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 25, 2013

My Sixteenth consecutive Toy Run

The weather bureau forecast for the weekend was HOT and man were they on the money! Saturday was hot but with a light southerly wind which was rather pleasant and it must have been quite comfortable for the brothers and sisters in the Cape who were involved in a "Bikers against Tolls" ride, well done you're doing good work.
Sunday dawned still and clear, we were up early and we could tell it was going to be a scorcher!

I considered riding like this, at least for the mass ride part once we got to Capetown but it was too hot and rather uncomfortable so I made another plan;

I attached the mask to the front of the bike, I thought it looked rather cool but I got a rude comment from a reader on my Braais, Beers and Bikes facebook page saying, and I quote "That is one plug ugly ride." - he's Australian.
He's entitled to his opinion but I love my bike as do all bikers, I would never disrespect a brother's bike in public but I suppose it takes all kinds....moving on.

At the Engen One-Stop a large group of bikers had already gathered, there were a lot of "Meeulanders" as well as other clubs and solo riders with bikes coming and going in a noisy cacophony of our favourite sound, the sheer music of the high revving internal combustion engine.
Brother Wessel with his beautiful Goldwing, the music system on that thing is incredible! Soon the riders were on their way, we followed after;

The ride down to Capetown was uneventful and rather pleasant, because of the bloody speed gantries every twenty kilometres I set my cruise control to 127kmh and just let the bike do the work. The temperature was by then already in the mid twenties.

We went to the Viper lounge to meet up with our friend Janet who was going to be riding to the toy run with Frank, it was quite a busy scene and for the first time I saw a couple of the Victory motorbikes riding out of the car park. Although the Viper lounge has had the Victory agency for quite some time I have never seen one on the road, I don't know if these were demo models on loan or privately owned but they looked and sounded good.

We decided that as it was so hot we would ride the back way directly to the end venue at Maynardville so as to avoid punishing our bikes too much, it's far more pleasant but you do miss out on the spirit of the run, if it's not too hot next year I'll do the whole mass ride again.
It was just about 10h30 when we threw our toys into the trailer, not many people about as the mass ride was still on its way, they would soon fill up. We headed off in search of liquid refreshment.
Due to the new, more stringent liquor laws the organisers had had to change the beer tent set up, no longer were we allowed to wander around the grounds with our beers but had to either drink them in the tent which, although huge, was like an oven, or in the too small adjacent beer garden which unfortunately had very little shade.
Luckily the Meeulanders had arrived earlier and had secured two shady tables and we happily joined them,
We spent a pleasant hour and a half or so cooling down, chatting to new and old friends. By then the crowd had swelled considerably and space in the beer garden was at a premium, if you got up to leave for any reason your space was immediately taken. If the Toy Run is held at Maynardville next year they'll have to make a bigger beer garden with more shade, please guys?
On our way out and nearly two hours later the trailers were filling up, I believe that somewhere in the vicinity of 34,000 toys were collected, amazing, heart warming stuff people.
We went back to the Viper lounge for another beer and then had a very mediocre lunch at a steak house that I'm not even going to bother to name, I won't be going back but it's directly above the "Ocean Basket" which had a queue outside so we chose the other unfortunately.
Unbelievably hot riding home, I saw 37 degrees on the R27! Again I set the cruise control at 127kmh but we uncharacteristically rode in our tee shirts, our jackets stayed in the panniers. We don't often do this but have on similar occasions, I will continue to take part in that event for as long as I can, kudos to all involved.
The Cape Times newspaper article this morning alluded to the fact that this is the largest motorcycle charity event in Southern Africa if not in the world. More than 100,000 bikers in different centres in South Africa riding for underprivileged children on the same day, amazing stuff and amazing people bikers.

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