Expect the Unexpected…

Trundled down to the German Horizons Unlimited rally in Ober-Liebersbach. There were about ten of us on the first night, and Thursday the numbers started to grow. Had my first German beer in the guesthouse. Weather started to improve.

Thursday was a church holiday, so lots of horse riders, dog walkers, cyclists, all heading for the hills. The surroundings were beautiful, lots of twisty roads.

I mentioned my concerns about my oil to friends, and was advised to go get it checked out. I could have dropped the oil at the rally, but Jens suggested a local dealership that could squeeze me in. So tootled over there, popped to Aldi for provisions whilst waiting for the mechanic to be free. Off the bike went, and 20 mins later, the bad news came. The mechanic was not happy with the amount of metal in the oil and on the filter. He said it was not safe to ride the bike further. Gutted. Seriously bad news. They wanted 700 euro just to open, investigate and close the engine. Not money I have and because of the church holiday, it would take them another week. My engine was only opened up 8 weeks ago, so best to get the mechanic who did it to check it over. So got lift back to the campsite, and got thinking. Tried ringing my breakdown cover company to get the bike home, but this would take them three weeks. Problem being I have to be at the Iranian Turkish border soon.

My dad is a superhero (at times). Landed from Hong Kong at London Heathrow at 5am, got info from breakdown company at 11am, hired van from Jolly Good Van Hire Ely at 12, was on the Eurotunnel to France at 3pm, and arrived by midnight. I bought him a German Beer and we caught the last few mins of Richard’s South America talk in the circus tent. Dad slept in the van with the airbed, and I had a last sleep in the tent. A good breakfast, and a quick escape. We made good time back to the UK. The eurotunnel booking was for 10pm, they let us on at 6.45, and we were home by 9pm. What a drive.

I was so lucky for this to happen at the Hubb, I was surrounded by other travellers who offered great advice, encouragement and sympathy.

Moving away from the Bike issue, the Hubb meet was fantastic. By Saturday there were 150 of us present. The presentations on various trips were fascinating. It was interesting to meet such a range of people including the two men from Cuba. They really taught a lesson on how to get by with no spares to hand. Bertrand kindly made me a wooden spade by hand as I forgot mine. I drank lots of Apfelwein (cider) from a local farm, and from the Guesthouse on site, German Beer was great, and lots of sausages. The variety of bikes and equipment just goes to show that everyone has their own way of doing things.

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