Thursday, September 07, 2006

My Long Ride to Freedom?

Life happened to me this week, and I was not able to even think about my broken Gomoto until yesterday (Wednesday).

I offered somebody with a bakkie a two-litre Coke and off I went with the Gomoto in a few pieces to Scooter World.

I asked for a 4000km service. I also asked them to figure out why the Gomoto could not start and why the headlight keeps going on and off intermittently while I ride.

I explained that my spokes were busy breaking and then I was presented with a seductive option. Gomoto no longer keep those spokes, but they are prepared to replace the weels with mags at half price. Normal price is R500 per wheel, so I can get two new solid-rimmed mags for 500.

Added to my list is replacement of the broken clutch bracket, broken ignition lock nut, broken break-light switch. (Somehow, Reynard had absolutely no recollection that I had been to his shop about 5 weeks earlier to order those same parts in order for me to replace them then.)

I asked how much it would cost. Obviously I was not able to get a final answer, but I was informed that it would be in the vicinity of R1200.

Now I know that I am definitely being a bit unreasonable here. I am replacing a whole lot of broken parts. And some of the parts are broken due to my own negligence. But I still can't help feeling a bit done in. When I bought the motorbike I was told that I would pay about R220 for a service. Technically that is still the case, but here, after 3700 km's I find myself paying R1200. (I should probably not have ordered the mag-wheels, but who can argue against the fact that the company will not be manufacturing/importing spokes anymore).

I'm wondering if this is not the beginning of my own "Ride to Freedom". The last time that I found myself in this situation was when I bought my first computer and found that I was paying copious amounts of money to have other people install operating systems and fix hardware. I took some risks and today I hardly have to pay anybody to do anything on my computer (which runs Linux).

Next time I will probably buy myself a little electrical meter and take the advice of people like Francois (who is a regular and welcome commenter on my blog) to do things myself. Surely I should be able to figure out how things work. That will certainly be my first step on my ride to freedom.

Hmmpf... I'm still cringing at the fact that I'm paying 1/7th of the price of the bike for its first decent service at 3700km. (Oh yes: And it really hurts me that I take the bike in on Wednesday, but can only expect it back on Monday or Tuesday! Am I from a different world? Is this normal?)

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