Friday, May 30, 2008


Goin' to Alaska! Gonna have fun!

Ok, in about 25 days, Gary and I will be leaving for the adventure of a lifetime--riding motorcycles from piedmont NC to Alaska. Actually, I'll be leaving town in 24 days if I stay at Gary's the the night of June 23. We leave town on the 24th.

This trip has been in the planning stage for almost a year. The planning started towards the end of a 3-week ride to western USA about this time last year. We had a super ride and saw sights neither of us could imagine on that trip.

Toward the end of that ride, I decided my next big ride would take me to Alaska. While I rode a Suzuki Vstrom 650 out west, it hit me that I needed a bike with just a little more comfort for the long ride to Alaska. The Vstrom did great, and was a great bike, but I like comfort and decided that I wanted more comfort.

Long story made short, I started looking for a 2005 Gold Wing, blue, ABS. I was in no hurry because the Vstrom was such a good bike. After several weeks of looking through classified ads, one Saturday morning I looked in the local newspaper and saw an ad for a 2005 BMW 1200 RT with 13.5K miles at a very good price.

Decided to look at the bike, even though I was a bit anti-BMW due to some riders' attitudes (better than thou attitude). The bike looked very good; a couple very minor dings, but no dents and clearly a clean bike. But the BMW name was not what I was looking for.

So, after looking at it, I left with the intention of forgetting about it. But about an hour after leaving, and after thinking about the BMW reputation for solid bikes with good performance, coupled with a very good asking price, I decided I needed to ride it to see if I liked the ride.

Went back to the owner, asked about riding it, and took it for a 30 minute ride; a combination of city streets and Interstate. It rode soooo goood! It had cruise control, adjustable windscreen, heated grips, electrically adjustable suspension, almost new tires, and was in very good condition. I thought it was a good buy, but didn't want to buy it on first impulse.

Told the owner I wanted to think about it overnight but would be back in touch the next day. Went home, got on the Internet and started looking at comparable bikes to see if it was a good buy. After a while of reading reviews and looking at similar bikes, I came to realize it was not a steal, but it was a very good deal indeed. I wanted it!

The next day, I called the owner and told him I liked it and was prepared to make an offer. I offered several hundred dollars under his asking price. I had no idea what he would say; I was prepared to pay his asking price. To my relief, he said "OK" almost immediately. I had bought the bike so easily.

I got the money, paid him, and did the title transfer the following day. It was almost too easy to believe! And now I was the owner of a BMW. Guess I need to develop the attitude that goes with the brand..... Nah, don't think so....... ;-)

Now I had the ride I wanted that will take me to Alaska.

Enuff for this opening blog.