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.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Bikers from Europe touring in the western cape, I meet some of them at our local biker bar

On Monday evening, following an invitation from Eduardo, President of the local chapter of the Gypsy Jokers and his lady Anna, owner of my favourite pub, I went on over to the Phoenix Bar in Vredenburg where they were holding a party for a bunch of bikers from Europe.
Eduardo and Phillip, along with some Brothers of the Wind riders from Capetown had visited a big biker rally in Bulgaria earlier last year and as a result bikers from Sweden, Finland and Bulgaria were visiting and being hosted by the western cape guys for a couple of weeks.
Apparently it had been a large group of bikers travelling the beautiful roads of the western cape, the best province in the country but I only got to meet about ten of them when I arrived, most were already on their way home.
They turned out to be a great bunch of guys, but of course they are bikers. They had thoroughly enjoyed their holiday, according to them it was "Awesome.", the mountain passes were beautiful and they got to see a good part of our riding area, including a weekend party at the famous biker joint on the R62; the Karoo Saloon.

It ended up with five of us from the Meeulanders club and we spent a good couple of hours chatting to the visitors,
"Adas", Sundsvall, Sweden
Some of the different patches

Eduardo: "I'll drink a Margharita if I want to!"
The visitors were all riding rented Harleys and from our conversations it seemed like they all ride them at home too; "It's big and lazy but I love the torque." They all spoke pretty good English so there was no communication problems and it was very interesting to hear about their home countries.
Obviously at the Phoenix you play pool.
Good hosts, the Gypsy Jokers

Uncle Frank rarely misses a party.
Eduardo and Swedish brother

The Jokers were busy with a big pot for the evening meal, the visitors were staying over in the bunk room and then apparently heading down to explore Capetown before flying home. I'm glad I went along and now should I ever find myself lucky enough to visit Sweden I have been offered free accommodation in Sunsvall, you never know?
Bon voyage brothers, it was good to meet you.
(Click on the photos to see them full size.)

Monday, February 11, 2019

We visit the Megaforce brotherhood for their front patch party

It has been a busy biking weekend again, the heat has subsided a bit but now the wind has started blowing gale force as it can here on the west coast, I'm not sure what I prefer, I love a bit of a breeze but when the wind buffets you and blows you into riding at an angle it's not so great - we can't always have perfect weather I suppose.

It has been a busy weekend and it has also been a great weekend, starting with a good few games of pool on Friday afternoon at my favourite pub; the Phoenix biker bar. Then on Saturday morning I went to a demo day at the Suzuki dealership in Vredenburg  where the guys queued up to ride the new Hyabusa, the new GSXR and a couple of smaller machines. I was asked if I wanted to take the 'busa out but I'm afraid I would not be able to do that bike justice, I'm not that kind of rider anymore, I'm more sedate which I suppose comes with advancing age! The demo day was well attended and I hope for their sake that it results in a few sales!
Nice looking bike, that Hyabusa.
 From there, later in the day I went through to Oliphantskop in Langebaan with Murray and Sampie to attend the Megaforce "front patch" party. This was where the wind really hit us, the ride out was actually quite unpleasant, luckily it is only a short ride and soon we were safely ensconced in the comfort and shelter of the bar with cold beverage in hand. "Weskus Kallie" was entertaining the crowd with his Country-style renditions of popular Afrikaans songs and then it was time for Megaforce.

The Megaforce brotherhood is a great bunch of guys and ladies, they are national and have been wearing "South coast" patches but they have complied with the local association which had a moratorium on new clubs and had not been permitted to "Patch up" in the Western Cape for a prescribed period which ends in May, now they have qualified to wear the small breast patch on the front and the big party for the back patch will be in later on.
If the way the front patch party went is anything to go by then the next one is not to be missed! The club spirit and camaraderie displayed at this function was inspiring and I'm definitely going to attend the next one. This club has already attracted a lot of younger members and I see them becoming a force to be reckoned with in the western cape.
They always begin proceedings with a prayer
 Club President Petrus, flanked by his Sergeant at Arms on the left and his Vice President, Romano on the right then addressed the crowd and the members' cuts with the new "West Coast" breast patch were handed out.
Justly proud 

Everyone had a "straffdop"
V.P. dons his cut

Megaforce is one of those clubs that exemplifies the brotherhood of biking.
Part of the crowd
Their ladies are also patched

There was a brief address by Dennis, chairman of the Westcoast Motorcycle Association and from there part of the crowd moved outside, Weskus Kallie resumed his music.
Megaforce have made Oliphantskop their "home" and have a very nice dedicated Club room, the outside facilities are also very pleasant, it's an ideal biker friendly location - why didn't I think of that?
(left) Wayne and Sampie
At Victorian Times pub

After a very pleasant afternoon the three of us headed home, with a brief stop at the "Victorian Times" pub in Saldanha, the wind had subsided a bit but I think it's going to keep blowing for a few days, that's what it's like here on the Cape west coast.
I said goodbye to my brothers and rode home, just around the corner. That was Saturday and there was more biking on Sunday; biker church and a breakfast but more about that later.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

In the middle of a heatwave, a local cruise and a couple of frosties

We are still experiencing very hot weather here in the western cape, this has limited our bike trips a bit and unfortunately we had to miss the club's February breakfast run but it was a happy occasion because it was a brief visit from my sister who lives in Johannesburg.

I am planning a road trip for us but waiting until the heatwave subsides, probably mid to late March when we will spend a week to ten days on a little bit of a tour, but more about that later. In the meantime I will be studying my maps, yes the paper kind, badly creased, slightly worn but I love my paper maps (with Google as a back-up!)
I have a little black notebook which I bought at a boot sale, it has "F-TYPE" embossed on the cover and although I do not own an F Type the book has become quite valuable over the years with travel notes, distances, places to stay and contact numbers etc. I have already started making new notes in it for the forthcoming trip. If any local bikers want to join in let me know, we will not be camping, instead we will look for self catering chalets or small town hotels - Janet does not camp.

In spite of the heat we decided to go for a local cruise yesterday, I was going to call a book club meeting but left it too late.
We rode through from Saldanha to Velddrif and then turned inland for the 60km stretch to Piketburg. By the time we were halfway along the temperature was already at 37 Celsius and I seriously considered turning back, but what the hell there was cold beer ahead - press on. Apart from the heat it was a nice ride, I kept the speed down to 120kmh.
At the N7 we decided to carry on to Moorreesburg, and stop for a beer at the newly re-modeled or rebuilt (after a fire) "Die Oude Stoep" - and happily the beer was ice cold and refreshing.
The short way back via the R45 and to my utter dismay there was a Stop/Go in operation, I rode down past the queue of cars to the front and we sat in the sweltering heat waiting for the cars to come, must have been almost fifteen minutes before we could get going again.

We blasted away from there once the cars had come past but can you believe it? Ten or so K's further on there was a second Stop/Go. There were no other vehicles there but the "Stop" sign was up and I knew that I would be in for a long, hot wait so I blew through it. The attendant was sitting in  the shade and didn't even bother to get up, normally when I do that they jump up and down and shout unintelligible things!
Halfway down I had to move aside to let about five cars pass by but that is no hassle on a motorbike, there's another item for the "Why bikes are better than cars" list.
Coming in to Langebaan I lifted my visor and Janet leaned in; "Do you want another beer?" I shouted to which she replied in the affirmative, she's a good pillion rider she is.

The Pirate's Bar was relatively cool, fans blowing and doors open and the beers were good and cold and as luck would have it, it was "Happy Hour", we ordered a beer and a glass of wine and got two of each, happiness is.
Langebaan is just about twenty minutes around the bay from home, by then it was about 13h00 and as we passed the "Victorian Times" bar I halfheartedly asked "Do you want another beer?", I did not hear her answer properly but was expecting a "No." anyway so I carried on, as Janet got off the bike outside our house she asked me; "What part of OK did you not understand?"
She's a wonderful biker pillion she is! (Note to self, do not jump to conclusions.)