The mercury has plummeted, the clocks have gone back, mornings are dark and evenings roll in quicker than a Marc Marquez lap of Valencia. All this can only indicate one thing but despite these portents and cute pictures of Robin Red Breasts adorning seasonal tat, nothing heralds the onset of winter more than me getting the heated gloves out, and on.
Both bikes are fitted with the connections to the battery and depending on my mood on the day (read that as weather on the day – the R6 rarely sees rainy days now) I can chop and change between the R6 and DT knowing that my fingers will be toasty warm.
Weird thing is, as long as my hands are warm whilst riding, I can pretty much tolerate any cold conditions. Toes can be frozen, nose can have an icicle hanging off it but as long as my hands are warm and operational, nothing else really matters.
Getting ready to leave work one evening and I commence my going-home ritual of putting on many layers and wiring my jacket up, a colleague normally based in Liverpool, is watching me in silence.
“Aren’t you leaving too, Lynsey?”
“Fooking, hell. You have to wear all that just to go home? It’s like a military operation! Isn’t it easier just to get in a car?” came the heavily Scouse accented reply.
Well, yes, it is a lot easier however the traffic is always bolloxed and it can take over an hour to do my 10 mile commute but only 30 minutes on my bike.
So on my return from work this frosty evening, HB meets me at the front door and gives me a hand to lock up the bike and put the cover on.
“Now what are you faffing around for?” I’m asked as 10 minutes later I’m disentangling myself from multiple layers and various wires, well aware that from start to finish, this has probably taken me an hour… the irony is not lost on me.
“Still getting out of my kit!”
And as I trip over the cables for my (beloved) heated gloves, HB looks quizzically at me and states: “I haven’t even put my thermal lining in yet”
Oh shut up…
Today is a dark day. After feeling decidedly wobbly for the last few days, an emergency appointment with my Doctor confirms a sneaky suspicion. I’ve got benign positional vertigo.
(Which explains why I hit the deck in spectacular style a few days earlier!)
“I strongly advise you not to ride your motorbike until you’ve had at least two clear days without these symptoms”
So commuting by train it is.
Which means both my bikes are just sitting on the driveway, gathering dust.
So later on in the week, HB offers to take the R6 in to work to give it a run out. I get a text at 6am, “Fuel light came on. Not got any money. How many miles left in the tank?”
Now, I have no idea, ‘cos I’ve never run it more than 10 miles on reserve, so I reply with confidence, at least 10 miles on low revs, thinking that it came on just as he got to Croydon so there should be enough to get him home. Google around and find most answers to this is 10-15 miles – so feel confident there is enough and think no more about it.
Later in the day, I get a text saying HB was home and the R6 made it OK.
When I get there I’m informed that the bike needed 15.2lt to fill it up and that 23 miles were completed whilst on reserve.
It has a 17lt tank so there was still a fair bit left so possibly we’re looking at 40 miles on reserve? Maybe more?
It’s always good to know these things and I’m too damn wussy to risk doing it myself!
So, purely in the name of research, I’ve offered up the DT for a trip to Croydon whilst I can’t ride.
It doesn’t have a fuel light on it, but at least it’s lighter and easier to push to a garage if need be…