Well guys; the countdown begins. One week to go. ONE WEEK!!
This is crazy, we’ve been planning for months and months and now it’s nearly time to leave.
I’m virtually all packed, everything’s falling into place and I really couldn’t be more organized. However, you know the old saying “best laid plans…?” Yeah, well the first few days have already been changed and to top it all, the bike STILL hasn’t left the U.S.!!
We originally planned to spend the first couple of days in the UK with our good pals Jac & Jase while we made sure all was well with the bike and we had all we needed as well as a couple quick visits with the kids. Then the real adventure would begin on the 20th when we have a ferry crossing from Portsmouth (UK) to St Malo (France) booked.
That’s changed now! My dad (in France) has surgery scheduled the day after we arrive back in the UK and so I will now fly on ahead of Iain to be with my mum a bit earlier than planned. It’s not serious surgery. A small procedure to prevent another stroke – he scared the pants off of us back in January but he’s doing well now and just needs his neck artery cleaning up a bit!
He’ll be fine but it’ll make me feel happier to be with mum while he’s in the hospital and it means I don’t have to try and be sympathetic about Iain’s seasickness!
…and the bike saga continues!
After all the drama from my last post, we thought it was sorted. She would be taken to JFK and would fly over. Ta da, problem solved. Although, to be honest, Iain wasn’t going to believe it until she was there. The first date range we had for the flight was 1st to the 5th of May.
Hmmm, that didn’t happen.
Then we were assured May 8th. Email sent yesterday to confirm all was on schedule…oh no, still waiting on customs clearance. WTF people? Can we actually get this done already?! And they are so blasé about it all. I swear, Iain is going to have a coronary before this is all over! As I type, he is on the phone to the UK end and trying (very hard) to remain calm!
It’s not so much the bike arriving on time. We know it only takes a day to leave/arrive but then there is all the uncrating and customs procedures that need to happen on that end before she can be released to us. It’s looking dicey that she’ll be ready to go when we arrive
In addition to this, wouldn’t you think that the shippers would have discussed items that would be prohibited for travel by air. Oh no, not our “super helpful” carriers! It was Iain who raised the subject with them. Ultimately, they had to break into the box and remove a couple small items which, thankfully, were stored in the crash bar pouches and not the locked panniers (they had declined to keep a key when we dropped her off!)
Apparently, he’s just been reassured that it will “definitely” be ready…hmmm, we’ll see!
I have to tell you though, I continue to impress myself with my packing skills!
Nine weeks of clothing, footwear and toiletries in one pannier bag. Including clothing for a range of temps; projected 40F in the Alps (plus wind chill factor) to 90F in Italy.
Thank God for washing facilities in AirBnBs, that’s all I can say!
Follow our posts as we prepare for our 13 week tour of Europe that starts in May 2018!