Goodbye to you, my trusted friend…

With the joy of a new motorbike also comes the sorrow to greet an old friend for the last time. Yes I know, it is only 200 kg of Italian Steel and French rubber. 14 Years since it all came together in the factory in Italy. But any true Biker will tell you: Any good bike is so much more than the sum of its parts. It does have a soul of its own. OK, I am not being a good theologian at the moment… maybe I never am anyway…

I have owned motorcycles since just before my 16th birthday. In South Africa we could only ride a 50 cc between 16 and 18. We made the best we could of them, with some customizing like ports, free flow exhausts. I had an accident in my first year at university. An unfortunate incident involving a police vehicle ended the life of my second bike, fortunately not mine… At the end of my first year at university I bough a Honda CB 400 N, one of the bikes I really loved the most. This bike served me well through 5 more years at university, and 1 year of compulsory Army service. But then I had to sell it- our first child was on the way and I was unemployed. We needed the money.

Many years went by without a bike. Until that day in 2005 when I was first invited to the introduction of the Harley 2006 series at a vehicle testing facility outside Pretoria. It was like an alcoholic taking the first drink after rehab- I was hooked again!

And so, after searching and studying, my paths crossed the Aprilia Pegaso. It was 4 years old, in showroom condition with only 10 000 km on the clock. I bought it. And it was such a good friend to me all these years…

One of my blog’s header photos is the Aprilia at the Southernmost point of the African Continent…

Picture 092

It did the longer journeys so good, but was also such a joy in an urban setting. As a Dueller it is supposed to be good on the dirt roads as well, but I am not such an offroader myself…

This bike has brought me through the wind and the rain, the sunshine and the pain (that is some song, right?) When I felt depressed, it picked me up. It gave me such good memories, for 9 years long.

But now my needs have shifted. I want to travel  more with my wife, now that our kids are able to fend for themselves…  My R 850 R is adequate for the job, but the rear seat hurts my wife a little bit, and you don’t want an unhappy wife on a bike journey. So, I put both the Aprilia and the BMW up for sale. I want to keep one for touring with my sons. I have hoped to sell the BMW, but the Aprilia sold first.

So, this afternoon, with tears in my eyes, I handed over the keys to a young man of our town. He is much younger than me, and have the yearning for adventure in his eyes that I understand and respect. My Aprilia will be in good hands, and be his new owner’s first love and first Ride. I really pray that he learns to ride safely, and take good care of her…

Maybe this is life- you may be good enough but your replacement is peeking over your shoulder…  The last photo this afternoon…

My Aprilia is gone tonight. And it is really sad for me… But may she have a beautiful, and safe future!  And may the yellow BMW behind her start writing a new chapter in our family’s life!

Looking at this post- I must be a bit crazy. But I really loved this bike!


12 thoughts on “Goodbye to you, my trusted friend…

  1. Moist eyes there for me… I quite understand the sentiment. I am sure the young man who bought your bike will add more lovely stories on the Aprilla. You had a name for her – faithful , was it?

    • “Huisbesoek” in English means House Visitation- that thing where churchpeople expect their pastor to visit them at their home once a year, quite impossible if you have a church of 1600 people like ours… The joke is my wife could earnestly say that I am out on Visitation, and they are happy, and so am I… maybe this yellow one must be Visitation II !

  2. Do you know, I’ve just gone through EXACTLY this with my old Toyota Landcruiser? I felt really silly for being so sad to say goodbye and it quite cheers me up to see that a ‘man of the cloth’ can openly mourn a heap of metal and rubber too!

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