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Topic: Quit our jobs, sold our home, gone riding!  (Read 571119 times)

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« on: August 01, 2012, 09:02:58 am »

Hey ST.ners,


It all starts with a bike... Actually, this was one of the last things we did to prepare for our trip!

I've been posting our ride reports here for a few years and we've appreciated all your support. Here's our latest journey, going to try to keep this thread synced with our blog, but it's tough to do on the road. Here's the first few blog entries from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw

Neda and I got our motorcycle licenses together in spring of 2004, as  an engagement present  to ourselves. We thought it would be a neat  thing to do.  

We took day trips, hung out at motorcycle meets, rode on group  rides, did track days, took  longer motorcycle trips, rode dirt bikes,  became motorcycle instructors, took even longer  trips, and then dealt  with the aftermath, the ensuing ennui of "real life" - the anchor of a   home, the jobs and the bills; the maintenance of everything we've  accumulated in our  collective seven decades on earth.  

So the solution seemed logical to us: quit the jobs, sell our home and everything in it, and  set out on THE motorcycle journey with no route planned, no end in sight and no return date  in mind.

Here are some pics from our blog: http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw


This is what's left of our earthly possessions after a few rounds of Keep, Sell, Throw Away, Give Away. Now to get it all on our bikes...!

The preparations were long and tedious, possibly the content of another blog entry, and we  did manage to finally leave Toronto two days later than we had planned - See! We're already  sticking to our "No Plan" resolution.

Our early Sunday morning ride out of Ontario was a breath of fresh air, after the stifling,  hectic bustle of the previous few weeks. No responsibility but to ride and ride and ride. A  few things still lingered on my mind, one motorcycle, one SUV still left to sell, and the  turnover of keys for the condo when we returned in 2 1/2 weeks. And the weather was  beautiful! So unlike all of our other motorcycle trips.


I've left just enough space for myself between the tank bag and the stuff piled on the rear seat. Hopefully I don't gain any weight on this trip...

'm taking my trusty R1200GS. It does handle like a pig now with all the weight in the back, the front end feels so light and I have to push the bars a lot harder so I don't run wide in turns. Ack!


First day's ride


Picked up some yummy strawberries at Flynn's Corners before hitting the 507

We rode all our favorite back roads out of Ontario and knocked on the door of our very good  friends in Ottawa, Kevin and Manon, who generously fed us with ice cream in the garage and  let us set up our tent in their back yard. Just in case you are thinking they aren't very  good friends at all, I am deathly allergic to their two cats who glared at me with knowing malintent through the screen door of the back porch.


Coming off the R1200ST's shaft drive, Neda has to get used to lubing her chain drive every evening now. Haha!


Cooling off with a little ice cream in the garage


Easing me into camping, backyard-style. Just like a kid.

I'm not a camping-kinda guy. My idea of roughing it means no fluffy white robe hanging on the back of the bathroom door and no mints on the pillow. Neda, on the other hand, is NatureGirl, so she was really looking forward to getting a lot of outdoor-time.


Neda and Manon prepare breakfast, while I watch from the back porch.

Leaving Kevin and Manon's place, I accidentally left my GPS case lying on the top of one of my saddlebags. The rear is so crowded with all the dry bags, extra fuel tank, toolkit and backpack that it's easy to misplace something back there. By the time I had realized it was missing, it had already been sacrificed to the highway gods. Sad



Kevin: "The only thing this driveway needs is more GSes...!"



GS convention in Kevin and Manon's driveway
« Last Edit: August 07, 2012, 10:46:06 pm by UFO » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2012, 09:07:15 am »

Repost from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/2.html



We rode to Montreal to get a new rear tire fitted on my GS, something I could have done at home, but just didn't have enough time with all the preparations, had a quick grocery store lunch and then off to Quebec City, our first campsite (KOA!)


Streets were deserted during the morning ride through old Quebec City


More old city scenes from the back of a motorcycle.


Owl watches over the Saint Lawrence River at Quebec City


This fiddler was very photogenic! Playing old Quebecois tunes.


Getting busier in the old city.


These cut-outs were hung above the old city streets.


Taking a break from walking around.

The Tour de Beauce runs in Quebec City today. We waited about 20 minutes for the bicycles to come running by in the old city. They were preceded by a police escort on motorcycles.


These guys were dragging their floorboards around the corners!


Waiting for the bicycles to run by


There they go! there must have been over 100 bicycles,
this was their first lap so they were bunched up coming up the hill



They would go on to do thirteen laps around the old city

We did a bit of vagabonding today by hiding out in the lobby of a swanky Quebec hotel, stealing their wi-fi, electric outlets and air-conditioning! We had to share it with a bachelorette party though, and at the end, we got to sign the bride's T-shirt. Sorry, no pix! Smile


Posefest in Quebec City
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« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2012, 09:08:49 am »

Repost from: http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/3.html



We had heard that the south shore of the St Lawrence River was a very picturesque place to ride around. We weren't disappointed!


Riding around the Gaspe Peninsula


Souvenir shop on the shores of Gaspe

We stopped in Rimouski to eat our lunch in a parking lot of a grocery store and we saw what looked to be a motorcycle school. We thought it was just a basic licensing course until they started doing stunts!


I like their stunting gear...


Someone painted the rock in the waters outside Saint-Flavie like an Egyptian Pharoah
Aptly named, "Pharoah Rock"


There are a lot of Can-Am Spyders riding around the area. I counted, and every third motorcycle we passed was a Spyder. Maybe Bombardier was having a sale for the locals? It got so ridiculous, that when Neda passed a Spyder, instead of waving, she would do the Incey Wincey Spider motion with her hand. Got some puzzled looks from that one! Smile


Big rock at Perce. We would ride around the coast and walk around the strait in about 20 minutes.


Cormorants dive-bombing the water for fish


It was close to low tide, as the waters were low enough for you to walk to the rock.
If you waited there till high tide, you'd be stranded!



Walking around Perce


Neda and Kim Jong-Il posing in front of the big rock at Perce


Coastline at the Gaspe peninsula.


Big stretch break for the GS and Neda

We ended up staying at Forillon National Park, but arrived too late in the evening to do any hiking after fumbling with our tent in the dark. Spectacular scenery off the cliffs of Gaspe, though!
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« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2012, 09:16:13 am »

Great photos, keep 'em coming please.  We've ridden around the Gaspe too - very scenic.  
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« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2012, 09:48:19 am »

Nice pictures. I assume you have photography as a hobby based on the quality of ocmposure, light and colour in your pics.

Great trip....curious to see where you go next after Canada.
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« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2012, 11:11:44 am »

I have always enjoyed y'all's trip reports.  This one will be epic in scope and outcome.!  

 Thumbsup
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« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2012, 11:19:29 am »


I have always enjoyed y'all's trip reports.  This one will be epic in scope and outcome.!  

 Thumbsup


I agree 100%! I'm really looking forward to reading the rest!  Bigsmile
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« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2012, 11:43:19 am »

Wow!

Beautiful photos. Quit/Sell it all and head out for wherever?

That's what I call livin' the dream. Awesome.  Thumbsup Thumbsup
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« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2012, 11:54:52 am »

 :popcorn:
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« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2012, 12:03:39 pm »

You are living my dream, enjoy it!
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« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2012, 12:04:49 pm »

I am viciously, viciously jealous.  If you wind up BC-bound, look us up - we can provide a cheap campground (read: my lawn) and free beer for a night or two!
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« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2012, 09:17:53 pm »

 Beerchug Thumbsup :popcorn:
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« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2012, 09:31:54 pm »

 Clap Beerchug Wow!
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« Reply #13 on: August 01, 2012, 10:29:57 pm »

Fantastic photos.  Looking forward to more. Thanks for sharing.
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« Reply #14 on: August 01, 2012, 11:25:09 pm »




Neda's take on a PB&J sandwich in Forrilon National Park, in Gaspe


Found a great campsite in St-Louis-de-Kent, NB!

These two pictures above typify our experience so far - camping and eating groceries. We're trying to stretch our travel dollar, since technically we're both unemployed and homeless! Smile

We dawdled quite a bit on the Gaspe peninsula, so trying to budget time as well, we decided to boot it across New Brunswick and Nova Scotia -  all the while feeling continually rushed to see as much of the Maritimes as possible before we had to make it back to Toronto by the end of the month to close our condo and sell the remaining vehicles before our next leg. Having to shop for groceries everyday and find a campsite before nightfall didn't help matters any!

So.. not a lot of pictures from this segment...


Our first taste of seafood in the Maritimes!

As we passed Antigonish, NS, we saw a sign for McLobster. It was more like McRobster - didn't taste very good and robbed us of $6.89! We met Sean at the McDonald's, who happened to be the city planner for Antigonish, and he urged us to ride around town, so we did. Nice town, shame about their McDonald's...

We did keep in contact with Sean a few times over e-mail as he had invited us to his cottage in Halifax, but the timing was off and we never did meet up.


Neda catches up on some light reading while waiting for the ferry

The ferry to Newfoundland departs from North Sydney, which is on the eastern coast of Nova Scotia. We arrived early and took our place in line with a lot of other Newfoundlanders waiting to go home. I had a long discussion with Robert, a francophone from St-Pierre-et-Miqeulon, a little island off the south coast of Newfoundland that is actually a part of France! He had a Goldwing and we were both talking in broken Franglais about motorcycles and riding. How I wished I learned more French in high school, he was a really great guy!


Waiting to board the ferry for Newfoundland


Our bikes get to travel across the Gulf of St Lawrence in the underbelly of the ferry, comforted by the weight of dozens of 18-wheelers above our heads.


While we were waiting in line, some locals told us that the winds on the coast of Newfoundland got so high, they blew 18-wheelers off the road. We tied our bikes down real good after hearing that, but it was pretty smooth sailing all the way to The Rock.


In the hold of the ferry

It's a 6.5 hour overnight trip from North Sydney, Nova Scotia to the west coast of Newfoundland at Port-Aux-Basques. There were a lot of people on the ferry on their way to St John's on the east coast, but because it's so costly to ferry all the way there, most people choose just to drive across the island instead.


Trying to get comfortable on the ferry

Being unemployed and homeless, we opted for the cheap seats on the ferry instead of a cabin. We weren't allowed to lie down on the floor or across several seats and if the crew found you, they would kick at you until you woke up... Sad
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« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2012, 12:24:26 am »

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« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2012, 09:26:22 am »

This is fantastic. I wish y'all the best of luck!

And thanks for bringing us along.  Bigok
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« Reply #17 on: August 02, 2012, 02:15:25 pm »

Wow, living the dream! We all look forward to the next update. Your reports are always epic and the narrative and photos are the benchmark for others to follow. Thank you for taking us along with you!

Eric
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« Reply #18 on: August 02, 2012, 05:49:11 pm »

Damn straight! Wish I could do that! I'd be GONE with a capital G.....
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« Reply #19 on: August 02, 2012, 08:31:04 pm »



Being unemployed and homeless, we opted for the cheap seats on the ferry instead of a cabin. We weren't allowed to lie down on the floor or across several seats and if the crew found you, they would kick at you until you woke up... Sad



When Rue & I took the ferries to/from Newfoundland last year, we too opted for just seats on the shorter Port aux Basque/Sydney route; thinking they'd be more comfortable than they were.  We wished we'd gotten a cabin instead.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2012, 07:19:50 am by Scratch33 » Logged

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