Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Not been feeling good.....

For the past few weeks, I haven't been feeling too good. I have felt weak and lethargic and that has meant I haven't been attending to my blog very much. I feel bad about not commenting on the blogs I have been reading and not responding to comments on my blog. Staying around the house has become commonplace and even the dog is not happy with me for abandoning many of her walks.  Mrs F has been brilliant making the patient feel better.

I have been in and out of hospital having various tests in an attempt to find out what is wrong. I have had pains in my chest for some time and that is never a good sign. So, I have had an exercise ECG to check out my heart - I passed, as there was nothing wrong there. A camera was sent on a visit down my throat to see if my guts were bad - nope, that all checked out. Pills of all different types have been tossed down my gullet - some did some good, others not. I have had electromagnetic radiation shot at me to make x-rays of my chest and ah ha - a 'shadow' was seen on one of my lungs. Shit.

More tests and an CT scan of my chest followed and the conclusion of all this? I have pneumonia! This is not a good thing, but it could have been a lot worse, so I am grateful for that.  I had seen pneumonia as something that elderly people get and I am nowhere near ready to accept age is catching up with me.

So, more tests tomorrow, with a camera going into my lungs to take a look around - nice.

Hopefully I will be back to proper blogging form soon!

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Meeting Axel

I’d had an odd un-settled week, so when my pal Ian Solley contacted me on Friday night, I was more than ready to take up his suggestion of visiting the Open Day at Guildford Harley-Davidson on Saturday morning.

Knowing Ian would turn up on one of his custom bikes, I decided to take my red bike, Tradewinds. Yep, I was right as when I arrived, Ian was there on his gorgeous Caesar Cafe Racer which is about to be featured in Back Street Heroes, the custom bike magazine. Ian did show me a couple of pictures of his bike from the BSH photoshoot and both models (the bike and the eye-candy that was draped over it) are quite something.  At least, I think Ian's bike was in the photos he showed to me....

Stupidly though, I forgot to take a picture of the bike at the Open Day for my blog!

The Open Day was to celebrate the dealerships second birthday and on the way there, I remembered that another blogger, Axel, who writes the blog Road King (UK) was a member of the Hogsback Chapter. I kept an eye out for Axel and yes, he turned up. Knowing Axel is German, I suspected I might have spotted him, when I saw this HOG patch. The flag gave him away!

It was good to meet Axel as I have been following his blog pretty much since his first post. It has been interesting to read how a Gold Wing rider for many years has turned into an avid H-D fan and especially so as he has the same model as my Leading Ladies bike, a Road King Classic.

When I arrived at the dealership, I was waved into the main parking area at the front of the place. I had never been there before, so I assumed that was where I was to park my bike, which I did. I reversed into the spot where the guys had indicated to me and before I realised what was going on, a card was immediately placed under my front wheel. I hadn’t even realised one was going to be held, but my bike had just been entered into the custom bike competition! It seemed I would be staying at the Open Day slightly longer than I had planned!

The place was very busy. This dealership must be doing something right because while others in and around London are closing, this one in Guildford seemed to be thriving. The place was packed and many people were buying clothes, parts and other H-D stuff all day.

Some of the bikes in the custom bike show....

I had seen this bike and sidecar on television. It belongs to a brewery....

A very silly V8 powered bike. It did sound good though....

As I walked around, this red bike seemed familiar somehow....

This bike must belong to a woman....

I saw Jon Harris at the event. He was there with his bike ‘The Great Escape’ which is based upon the film and has a fantastic paint job. It has won the best paint category at many bike shows and deservedly so.

I found a website dedicated to Jon's bike.

This is an unusual use for a tyre. A front fender!....

This bike is called Harley-Quin. Clever....

A lovely old Harley....

More bikes at the event....

I had seen this bike at the Alexander Palace Custom Bike Show a few weeks ago. I liked it then, but now I really like it. It was built for a customer, which is just as well, because if it hadn’t of been, I would have been very tempted to buy it....

Axel was taking lots of pictures in his role as Chapter Photographer, so now doubt some of his pictures will appear on his blog. This is Axel towards the end of the day....

Congratulations to Guildford Harley-Davidson, for they put on a great day.

Friday, 25 March 2011

Can you be unfaithful to a Pair of Boots?

Some of my readers will remember I wrote on my blog about the boots I wore every day on my four-and-a-half month ride across the USA. They were so comfortable for the dual purpose of both riding and walking. Sadly however, after 21,000 miles, they were beginning to fall apart and had to be gracefully retired when I reached home.

Feeling somewhat unfaithful to those old boots, I went a bought a new pair. Knowing the old ones were so good, I of course had to buy exactly the same – Alpinestars Shibuya WP shoes. Same colour as before.

Here are the old boots compared to the new. Like cousins standing next to each other. I think the old boots look remarkably good considering they have been around the block so much!

As we went through so much together, I can’t bring myself to throw the old ones away though.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

My Blog Gets Ripped Off !!

It’s funny what you can find on the Internet sometimes. Yesterday I found a blog called Harley Davidson Motorcycle which when I looked at it a little closer, I realised the person who created this blog had ripped off and copied nearly my entire USA Tour blog!!!

UPDATE - It has been suggested to me the copy blog might have been created with the intent of spreading a virus, so I have removed the link to the copy blog to prevent anyone from accessing it.

Virtually all the posts on this rip-off blog for September last year are direct copies (words and pictures) of my blog.  The same applies for almost every posting I have ever made.  What a scum-bag!

While it is said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, this is just plain copying!

I have formally complained to Blogger. I will let you, my true readers of this, my genuine blog, know what happens.

It would be really funny if this posting was copied into the rip-off blog!

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Petrol Prices - You Pay How Much ???

I read a posting on Bobskoot's Blog a few days ago about petrol prices. Bob said that fuel in Vancouver had risen to $1.311 /ltr = $4.96 /US gallon.

Bob would probably cry if he had to buy fuel in the UK. Are you sitting down Bob?

My local petrol station was selling regular fuel today at £1.337 per litre. That is £6.082 per UK gallon or £5.053 per US gallon. (UK gallons and US gallons are different).

In US dollars, that is $8.203 per US gallon!!!

With the various conflicts happening in north Africa and the Middle East, these prices are forecast by some to rise by 50% by the end of the year.

Anybody want to buy a Range Rover?

Dream Rangers

Some of my readers may have seen this video. It was sent to me by Greg who has followed my blog for a while and it is so good, I wanted to share it.

My hope is that everyone who rides feels like this one day....

Friday, 4 March 2011

London Custom Bike Show Video

For the second year running, the London International Custom Motorcycle Show was held at the famous Alexandra Palace on the north side of London. I went with Ian Solley of 7Ages Custom Motorcycles who posted some good pictures of the show on his blog.

From looking at the Harley-Davidson Road King UK blog, I could see Axel also went, but sadly we didn’t bump into each other. I much prefer this smaller custom show to the main London Motorcycle Show. The people are more interesting and so are the bikes. There is more innovation on display and while the bikes are highly polished, the organisation, the stands and some of the people are not. That somehow makes it better for me.

Instead of taking regular pictures, which I found quite difficult last year due to the low light levels in the halls, I decided to take a small video camera and see what I could achieve with that....