Thursday, May 31, 2007

Redefining Freedom

Having fun on my Gomoto Freedom.
Picture by Claudelle.

Monday, May 07, 2007


Vacation Dreams

I'm fighting an internal battle with myself at the moment. My friends and family think that I am being rather silly.

I've been working for the same organisation (in many different positions) since I graduated at the end of 1996. (This probably also explains a lot of my other neurosis) The organisation has a policy that an employee is entitled to an extra month of leave after working for 10 years. So this year I officially get 8 weeks leave.

I have applied to go to South-Korea during July-August to teach English in a language school there. I'm currently waiting for the final approval. This option makes a lot of sense. I get a free return flight ticket to an area of the world that I have never been to. I do 6 hours of work a day. The rest of the time (and over week-ends) I get to explore the environment. I also get paid $1300 per month for this work. (I am debating whether this money will buy me a laptop which runs Ubuntu Linux or a new double bed, or if I will have the discipline to rather just kill most of my credit card debt with it).

I have almost no sense of excitement about this trip. Whenever I begin to dream about my holiday, I see myself on a solitary road for 20 days with a sports bag at the back of my motorbike and a two-man tent. Since I bought my Gomoto in 2006 I've been dreaming about taking a long solitary trip (a few thousand kilometers) with my Gomoto. In January-February, when I started to become frustrated with my motorbike, I changed my mind. Now most of the frustration is gone. My spokes don't seem to be breaking anymore. The bike still runs strongly.

It does not help that I just bought myself a copy of Shorelines: A Journey along the South African Coast, written by Chris Marais and Julienne Du Toit. They did with a diesel bakkie what I would like to do (at least in part) with my Gomoto. Their book tells about the people that they meet and the stories they heard on the way.

Imagine if I could travel from the Western Cape to Kwa Zulu Natal with my Gomoto! (I really want to drive over Sani-Pass on my bike!) I could travel about 120 - 200 km's per day and sleep in camping areas or Backpackers hostels on the way. Perhaps I could make a deal with Gomoto that they would provide back-up service for my motorbike at their outlets in a few of the cities/towns along the way.

Everybody tells me that South-Korea is a better option. It won't cost me anything and it is "Overseas!". I'm still trying to persuade myself that it is really as exciting as feeling the wind blow around oneself on an undulating country road near the coast of South Africa.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

125cc Scooters are doing it all the way to KKNK

There seems to be other people in Somerset West who feel adventurous with their 125cc motorbikes. In fact, Dries Rossouw has beaten me in achieving a dream that I have also held for some time. He drove his 125cc Jonway scooter all the way from Somerset-West, via Laignsburg and the Swartberg Pass to Oudtshoorn to attend the Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees.

Perhaps we should organise a 125cc scooter rally to a similar event like this. Imagine if a group of 40 or 50 scooters and Gomotos take a "lunch-run" (as opposed to a breakfast run) out to the Whale festival at Hermanus in September.

Here is the main part of the newspaper article from the District Mail (I will try to type out the article when I get a chance):