Life at the end of the road

March 9, 2009

A very tough decision!

Filed under: daily doings — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:11 pm

Now first of all let me apologize for what may seem like a confused time scale but I’ve started writing this twice and given up due to internet problems, which like toothache mysteriously vanish when someone checks it out 😦 So as a run down on what’s been happening, it’s now Monday and I started writing the post below on Saturday about Friday, are you following me ?

Saturday 7th March

Yesterday was a bit of an epic day and I didn’t get finished in my cistern cupboard until far too late to do any blogging, actually it wasn’t that late but I was wrecked so went straight to bed after dinner. Well not quite straight to bed I managed to fall asleep on one of the kitchen chairs first, which is quite an achievement in itself as they’re just the straight up and down variety with no arm rest to hold you in! Anyway the day started fine enough with the usual bout of feeding and then the school run. Today however instead of heading back up the road I stayed down to wait for some of the ‘Calum’s road’ bikers http://calumsroad.info/

Oonyack, the BBC and Thunder!

Oonyack, the BBC and Thunder!

Two of the bikers, Jonny McMaster aka HRH Oonyack and Roger Gillespie aka Thunder were arriving on the 9:30 from Sconser accompanied by Gordon the BBC man from Northern Ireland. Jonny and Roger are two of the approximately 20 riders doing the charity run from ‘Calum’s road’ on Raasay to the soon to be new ‘Calum’s road’ in the Gambia and today they were on a most important mission. They had the unenviable task of picking out one of the designs drawn by the pupils of Raasay primary school before which they had to face a barrage ( well a well ordered and polite one ) of questions from the eager pupils.

A severe grilling!

A severe grilling!

The ‘interrogation’ of Jonny and Roger was relentless and I struggled getting a question in myself, I was wanting to know how they were getting back after their epic 5000 mile ride but was beaten to it by some wise 7 year old 🙂 I have to say the two chaps coped well under the pressure and I could tell by Jonny’s expression that he would find the prospect of  riding 5000 miles in winter across two continents easier  than facing a grilling by Raasay primary! After the pupils curiosity had been satisfied it was time to move onto the judging and it was not easy.

A tough decision

A tough decision

There were some fine efforts

Rosie

Rosie

logan

Logan

My boy :-)

My boy 🙂

In fact they were all good and I’m only sorry that I didn’t take better pictures and pay more attention to who did what but in the end the two bikers agreed with some difficulty on Imogen’s fine effort. Which will be made into a sticker that each rider will carry on their bike, they will I’m sure also be available shortly from http://calumsroad.info/ for I think  £5.00 which is a bargain because ALL the money is going to the charity.

The winner

The winner, Imogen aged 10

With the judging done it was time to have a look around the bikes, which whilst both being ‘adventure’ bikes designed for long distances and serious trail riding they are in fact like chalk and cheese. Roger’s BMW R80GS g-spd having an air cooled engine and from a design dating back to the 1930’s, at over 20 years old it was the very first of this type of overland tourer with it’s high ground clearance, large fuel tank and off road tyres. It’s legendary reliability and excellent fuel consumption making it ideal for this type of trip and spawning a group of dedicated enthusiasts.

Thunder's BMW GS

Thunder's BMW GS

Jonny, himself a former GS rider now prefers the more modern KTM 990 S Adventure

Two KTM 990 EFI's and a BMW GS

Two KTM 990 EFI's and a BMW GS

Here’s Jonny and Roger having the great air/water cooled debate ( probably for the hundredth time 🙂 )

More serious questions

More serious questions

“KTM 990S Adventure
White power suspension
42ltr Safari fuel Tanks
Akroprovic Exhaust system
Rallye mudguard
GPS”

After a much needed coffee and cake I headed home and the bikers headed for ‘Calum’s road’ which is of course the same way!

The Interview

The Interview

Here’s Roger doing his stuff for the telly, it’s not actually going out until May when it will be broadcast as part of the http://www.northwest200.org/ NW 200,  Ireland’s largest outdoor sporting event but I’m sure they’ll let us know exactly when it’s going to be broadcast when you should be able to view it on Sky or BBC i player.

Calum's road recce

Calum's road recce

Here they are a mile or so further up ‘Calum’s road’ and just in sight of Loch Arnish, notice the sun on the small islands in the distance. The furthest one is called Grian a Sgier which is Gaelic for the sunny rock and I can vouch for the many times it is bathed in sunshine when all around is in shade.

And now I’m going for a bath!

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