The day will come when I will die. So the only matter of consequence before me is what I will do with my allotted time. I can remain on shore, paralyzed with fear, or I can raise my sails and dip and soar in the breeze.--Richard Bode

Monday, June 23, 2014


I got Jessica back to her apartment, and spent the night there. She says that she will always remember our ride through Romania. What a trip that was. Somewhere in that trip I guess I had picked up some kind of foreign matter in my front fork seals because they were leaking oil like crazy. I was certain they would have to be changed, which I could not do in a parking lot with the limited tools I have with me. I called the Suzuki shop in Prague, and they priced the job at 4.5 hours of labor, and they could not do it for a week.  I got online with Stromtroopers (a VStrom forum), Adventure Riders, and Horizons Unlimited. There were dozens of helpful people who responded to my questions, and most said what I needed to do was run a 35 mm photographic negative up and down through the seals to clean them out. Who has film these days, but I did find a piece of plastic and it did the trick perfectly. Now I have no more leaks, and I saved probably $600 plus 5 days.

Thanks a bunch to all who responded. I really appreciate the help.

I rode south from Jessica's and Renaud's apartment in Prague to a town on the southern edge of the Czech Republic that they suggested I go to. It was really a neat place. It was like a miniature Prague. It had a fairy-tale castle, a trope l'oeil church, and even its own tiny version of Prague's Charles Bridge.

But to me, the most impressive thing of all was the Revolving Theatre. Now, I had no idea what a revolving theatre was, but a woman had an extra ticket because her daughter backed out on the performance, and she sold it to me cheap. What happens in the Revolving Theatre, is the action takes place on the paths and gardens and lawns, and the audience revolves to watch each scene. It was marvelous: there were sword fights, bombs, horses, drunken fights, dances in the castle . It was very good, although I didn't understand a word of it since I don't speak Czech. Still, I really liked it. The performance was The Three Musketeers.

I wasn't able to take a picture once the play started, but you can get the idea from this picture. Imagine that the audience strolling up the path, was actors instead, maybe even on horses, and that the audience turns right or left to follow the action.

By the way: did you know that Budweiser Beer started in Prague? And the real, original Budweiser Beer is still sold there.

I rode on south, and finally came to the famous Danube River. My GPS had me take a ferry across it.

I will never understand why my GPS does some of the things it does, because not more than a mile farther along it had me go back to my original side of the river over a nice bridge.  Hmmmmm.

I got stopped in a long line of traffic while passing through a tiny Austrian town. It looked like there was a parade going on. I followed another motorcycle rider up to the front of the line. I wish I had been able to get my camera out sooner, because the parade was to the cemetery. There was a band following the clergy and family, and the coffin of the dearly departed being pushed along by what looked like the local Shrine Club. It was quite the sight. All I was able to do was get a picture of the tail end of the parade going up into the cemetery.

I made it down to Vienna, Austria. Now, I am not a fan of big capital cities, even ones as famous as Vienna. There just is not much about them that appeals to me. I did take in a performance of Mozart music though. If you saw Amadeus, you will remember that much of what he did took place in Vienna. I am a huge Mozart fan, so I really enjoyed the show,

I even did a "selfie". Ha.

I really did not have a great deal of interest in seeing the sites in Vienna. I have been there before with my wife anyway, I was much more interested in riding south into the Austrian Alps. It was a Sunday, and apparently riding those roads on a motorcycle is the thing to do on a warm, sunny June day, There were literally hundreds of them,

The roads in Austria are marvelous. I loved riding them up through the mountains.

After a long day of riding, I was ready to crawl into my tent (Yeah-- I am back to camping. I get really tired of hotel rooms and restaurant food.

One of the things you must do at European campgrounds is clean the toilet if you leave a stain in it. They say: "Nobody wants to read your tracks." See if you can figure out which of these three uses of a toiled brush is the only correct one.

I was back on the road today, passing back and forth between Slovenia and Austria as Odysseus and I traversed the alps.

I dragged my footpegs more than once going around the hairpin curves.

Odysseus and I finally entered Slovenia for a last time. We will stay on this side of the Alps for now.

I was lucky to average 25 miles an hour on those Alpine roads. Time to speed things up, I hopped on the autobahn and took it to Trieste, Italy, at about 70 miles per hour, It took almost no time at that speed. And, as soon as I got to Trieste and the Adriatic Sea, I took a left turn, headed south into Slovenia (again) and found a marvelous campground to stay the night.

The man just down the way from me is from Australia, and is riding a BMW motorcycle on his way to Ireland to see his 90 year old mother. He has gone around the world on motorcycles twice and is quite the interesting guy.

That's all for now. I am working mny way south toward Greece.

More later,