Here is how I preferred the adventure motorcycle rather than the comfort of a fligh!
I started to nominate this article ‘Cloyes Madrid’ simply, but after careful consideration, my feeling was mainly orientated towards this new title which, throughout this trip, has found its rightful place.
« Alone in the World » does not mean that there is nothing around you which you can attach you!
On the contrary, multiple solutions available to you: for example you can have a picture of onboard your sweetie in the transparent pocket of your tank bag, your children in your wallet that you will see at each stop and then you always have your thoughts which run permanently mile after mile and train you away from the present moment.
But let me show you my amazing trip aboard my silver surf, somewhat flanged however by traffic regulations !
The main idea was to clear psychological pressures with a normal flight Paris-Madrid, my new professional working conditions, train me often to take the aircraft and when it has been allowed to think of the advantages to the road in motorcycle and to combine the useful with the pleasant, my mind set in a permanent mode of thinking.
During long days I asked myself questions, about the time, the weather, the fatigue, the cost of wear and tear of the vehicle too, but nothing stopped me in my final decision which it, had germinated in less than a minute!
Motorcyclists who accustomed to these kind of long trips, will confirm you that there are no plans a trip of this sort lightly and even less with a racing bike.
It should prepare the machine which had not crossed the France since a long time. New tires was needed, and as such, a small study of current market made me choose the new Michelin Pilot Power3 appreciated by roadsters and sports motorbikes and that can be used on road as well as on circuit, experience has confirmed to me that I was not mistaken in my choice.
A quick tour in the workshop, the time of plunge me into the atmosphere of the preparations of circuit and the good smell of rubber, general check of the machine and here it is finally ready!
Then the reflection brought on road equipment, a ride in my friend Nathalie avenue de la Grande Armée, always good advice since I started on circuit, it is always a pleasure to turn to her to choose my equipment.
Pleased to find ideal solutions, share advice from the professionals, and discuss with them about my project was a good start.
I found a tank bag perfectly designed and matched to the colors of my bike. (magistral Bowl kick!).
Then a bag to carry my laptops at the rear of the bike, and to conclude, a coat of effective rainfall in the forecast of the climatic conditions announced by meteo France.
The advantage to leave only for work, is that I could barter business recreation against those required for my business that occupy less space.
For safety and to try all this new material on the beautiful bike, I did a road test before my official departure. A small goodbye to my two sons “bikers in the soul” and the observation of my ideal choices.
I am ready for the big start; I plan to take my “flight” in the night to arrive late in the day in Madrid. The nights are as usual short for me and find the time to rest my eyes a few hours was not won!
Of Moreover, a recent chalazion at my right eye, very painful, did that increase the painful aspect of the project. It is in fact 4 h sleep later and with a terrible suffering that I dress for the road, it is there that the adventure continues.
The protected tank, the well caparisoned rear bag and my famous Helmet Bag Insolent Rider in the back to protect my helmet during my prolonged stops, I get on my bike and I starts.
Under the soft whirring of the beast, I throw a last glance around me to burn in me these beautiful images of the surrounding nature. I turn the throttle grip!
Just arrived at the first stop, the rain immediately plunges me into an atmosphere of loneliness. In the big black and the poor visibility, I focus on the beautiful noise of my Micron exhaust pipe, I settle comfortably well at the bottom of the saddle and in a riding position as were taught to me by my mentor Christophe Guyot, I protect myself behind the Carbone Kevlar fairing ! I’m starting to beer the miles.
Anticipation is de rigueur, I increase the safety distance, I pay attention to every moment, I will not sleep! On the small roads, some areas at risk, between the two rows of trees bordering the road, dead leaves dropped by wind make me caution. My courses of medicine come in mind by circulating night: mitigation of contrasts, modification of the Visual field, disturbance of the sense of relief, to which you add the glare of other crossings under very heavy rains and some barely lit work areas increased adrenalin in some places!
Here is the first committed 80km and highway which is farther away, a great relief, because I absolutely didn’t thought to meet the first problems as early as the first kilometers!
Only vehicles crossed on my road since 4:30 were trucks and despite their dominating position from their elevated cabins, they seemed to be bothered by my code light maybe set slightly too high.
In these driving conditions, not so easy, they didn’t hesitate to make me understand, full headlight, sometimes even some of them were equipped with high intensity headlamp and put me in full in the face.
I can assure you that in these extreme conditions, the discomfort under these cloudbursts and this lack of visibility is enormous! For some who have surprised me at the last moment, I put several minutes sometimes to return to approximately correct rolling conditions (this persistence causing a whitish and intense halo disappearing after awhile…)
And, with a look that tired more and more time after time.
So to remind these people that we live on two wheels, here’s a quick overview of what one sees in rainy weather in the best of cases!
First position of toll, first ticket, small fix in the rain because of the stop, I am forced to remove my gloves and with the wind, I start to have wet hands (so inevitably the inside of gloves then!)
The ticket is carefully slipped with my wallet in my waterproof pocket. I take the road without being more unwell than that by this small wet and icy stop.
I should mention that my leather coat and above it, the one for the rain helped keep me dry and well warm along the route to the frontier.
It’s, arrived at the second toll that the problem took more important! Indeed, the machine did not accept the slightly damp ticket and I had to wait long minutes still no protection above me (one wonders what are the shelters over our heads since they make you move to places where they are not effective!)
The hostess at the intercom decides to apply to me the smallest rate since I’d just take Highway 5 minutes before, she had asked me to read five totally unreadable on my ticket numbers (again, I think that serious changes are needed on the motorway networks, not just for works on the roads as it’s always the case but also concerning the tolls!)
I re-set therefore with the same rhythm and patiently wait for the first refuel with gasoline.
Once at the station, I could wipe my headphones and my gloves and check that everything was going well on the motorcycle. This was the case and I take not to take the road immediately, reserving a longer pause as my Advanced time.
The rain kept falling and I swallowed the miles while enjoying all the same the power and accuracy of my gear, what a joy to feel this incessant pleasure and to think that a few hours later, inevitably, I have the happiness to ride with the Sun of the South.
Thanks to the staff on rest areas which served me my cappuccinos and contributed to monitor my bike while I was going to wash my hands.
The sun rises quickly, the miles are connected and I don’t feel them, the route is simple, few people on the roads, I take my pleasure to drive and think of the Spain Sun!
The passage of Bordeaux is felt, the weather calms down a little, the heat of some places begins to dry my gloves, I open even a little bit my hands leading to facilitate the phenomenon. And here me, through the Aquitaine region, names scroll, memories are made available in my mind, it is undeniable that the spirit does not work at this speed when you take the plane.
I leave Biarritz, its fishing port, its beach and its lighthouse on my right, I tell myself that perhaps back if the time is warmer, I will dwell a bit to feel the sea spray!
The basque coast scrolls quickly, places are all known from me and I like to immerse myself in these memories of travels that fueled a part of my past mainly on a motorcycle.
St.-Jean-de-Lutz then Hendaye and the border is further away, the weather neither. Where some aim their point of fall, I realize that a good third of road still waiting for me and as I imagined well, the pleasure between the stone and water, North Spain, from the border to the capital…
“See first with your eyes, see after with your mind and finally with your body.”
Two natures are imposed upon me, stone and water, I dream of these rocky Spurs which come from the ideas of flights, the feelings of freedom to infinity and where meet the most beautiful horizons. I dive also whenever it’s possible in unknown seas consist of thousand different decorations, etched in my mind forever when I share with my siren and soothing my body whenever I slip myself.
“Resonance of both worlds is a thread that releases me and conducts me inevitably toward these consistent movements that train me every time in the right way.” © DM
This is why I felt as free crossing of North Spain, sometimes identifying the winding paths to those of our region of Auvergne, breathing in the fresh air of places.
Tourists love the beaches crowded and oily, they love to meet and unite in places of programmed visits, I did not discuss their choices, I simply prefers to themselves, the solitude of my journey and the isolation of my trekking of the day, spend 12 hours alone, immersed in the reflection and remembrance of the past actions, as much as in the projection of future projects, is to my mind and my soul the greatest satisfaction me to get.
I much prefer the wild and deserted roads, I am blessed, I found them in this beautiful country where it is allowed to feel unique emotions.
Do no contempt for the rest, I feel perfectly fine in these circumstances of life, where, the sensations preferred pending happiness to share them, remain those of solitude and silence.
The route was simple and childish, not need GPS before even entering Madrid, only stay focused on driving, radars, autonomy and the comfort of an ideal position which allowed me to do all in one deals.
The end is near, circulation intensifies and I redouble attention, my fear for radar keeps me awake, sometimes even with the heat and the lack of vividness of driving, it is asleep!
Attend these beautiful routes between 90 km/h and 120 km/h is a torture! I play the accelerator and I count now the minutes that separate me from my destination. My friends from the world of the two wheels, knowing me well, suspect that for me it is more important to dominate his impulses of wanting to dominate the “beast” !
I start to cross some motorcycles and to enter the area of Madrid, even if the traffic is intense, the pleasure is present, I really don’t regret this pleasant recreation in my schedule so dense.
Visual reminders of what I had discovered a few weeks ago with my partner already make me live at the rhythm of the Spaniards, it’s hot, all fusses around me, the capital greets me… to follow
“Forget your pain, anger, resentment, and hatred. Let them pass like smoke taken by the breeze. You should not deviate from the path of righteousness: you should lead the life of a good man. Don’t be possessed by greed, lust, or your ego. You should accept grief, sentencing and hatred as they are and be regarded as an opportunity and a test given by divine powers… a blessing given by nature…”