Falling in love again: big views, big emotions on reclaiming my RR from the workshop following its rebuild. A brilliant ride out but read on to hear about the shooting on the autoroute .
Making friends again with my RR following its long stay in the workshop being rebuilt after the traffic incident in September on the autoroute A7 back in to Marseille. I’m taking things very easy, trying to minimise risks. It’s going to be quite a while before I am scratching the sliders on this replacement riding suit, if ever.
CBR600RR is still a wonderful bike to ride; supple, fast enough for public roads, even here in Provence where there’s space to open up and not that much traffic at this time of the year. Look where I want to go and the bike follows, or steer with the thighs: either way it’s point and shoot. Equally happy to play at racing or to bimble when I just want to enjoy the clear air and big big landscapes.
Then there’s Honda’s beautiful precision engineering, many panels have been replaced and the rest newly cleaned and polished to showroom standard, so shining bright in the late February sunshine. It’s a very visual reminder of the technological marvels that these riding machines have become.
Whilst today’s blue sky and sunshine was very welcome after a wet and windy winter in the UK, there was much fresh snow up here in the Alps of Haut-Provence yesterday (so I postponed collecting my bike for a day) and there is more sleet forecast for tomorrow.
Riding across the Plateau of Valensole, the cherry trees are in blossom but so far the lavender in the fields still looks dormant. The air in the afternoon super-clear, the fresh snow shining brilliantly on the mountains around: Allos, Dévoluy, Ventoux and even far away across the Rhône Valley to the Monts d’Ardèche. Big views, big emotion.
Wearing the one-piece suit on the plane and then the train up from Marseille to Manosque was, again, the most practical way to wear in the leather, mould the protection pads and it saves the wait at the airport baggage reclaim.
Riding back to Marseille, the dangers of the A7 autoroute today included a shooting between cars, on the other carriageway but scarily soon after my passing along that route. Oh dear, Marseille!
Finally a chatty dinner with Pascal (of AMA Moto club) at a favourite little restaurant; Syb, the elegant Patronne, served us filets of sardines roasted with lots of Herbes de Provence.
I’m reminded of Marlene Dietrich’s song “Ich bin von Kopf bis Fuß auf Liebe eingestellt” in the 1930 film Der Blaue Engel. You probably know it as “Falling in love again”, although Friedrich Hollaender’s original lyric in German is even more appropriate to today’s ride, my rough translation is “My cup is full of love and is overflowing”.
“Thank you” to all the people who have helped me get back on two wheels, again.