Thursday, 10 April 2014

Adios Orlando

Everything packed for our first long ride including our trusty good-luck mascot 'Malcolm The Mouse' who has travelled Europe with us over many years of  motorcycle touring…..suitably attired of course for the 'Blighty-Boys' Tour

Goodbye Orlando…… just leaving our hotel on Thursday 10th April heading east on the Martin Andersen Beachline Expressway the FL-528 an arrow straight road for some 60 miles.  A relaxing way to settle into the ride with the warming morning sunshine in front of us before turning south on the A1A. Our first riding challenge was our luggage which was causing a low speed steering wobble due to the weight being too far back. We solved it by reloading into a format that worked.  The 528 is a toll-road where at the payment booth we encountered a 'nutter' which our American friends would call a 'retard!'  I attempted to make a single payment for two motorcycles which seemed fine until JG went through without his permission, this sent him into a major rant at me...."you've now f***ed up all my numbers!" He went on and on.   It  sounded like it could have come straight out of the script of "The Hangover" and the character called Alan (actor Zach Galifianakis).  After about ten seconds and no understanding of what he wanted me to do I just 'blatted' was a little unsettling to say the least.

The A1A took us down through Cape Canaveral, Cocoa Beach and Melbourne Beach where we stopped for coffee. It's a stunning road with the Atlantic Ocean just 20-40 metres away from you for around 50 miles at an elevation of 1-2 metres.  It was Harley cruising at its best. We stopped for a quick lunch in Riviera Beach, strictly no 'carbs' to keep the dreaded 'riding food-coma' from taking hold!  We continued our ride basked in glorious sunshine all afternoon listening through the Electraglides sound system to many of the FM radio stations that America has to offer, with 'Gater-Rock' and 'Kiss-Country' being our favourites. Eventually we hit the Florida Keys arriving into Key Largo at around 6pm, time for a refuel and and some jalapeño beef jerky to spike our tones up.  We had another 100 miles to ride to Key West along the entire length of the 'Overseas Highway'.  Nothing can prepare you for the majesty of this road.  Apart from it being an incredible feat of engineering the views of the Atlantic Ocean from the bike as you glide across it between 30mph - 60mph is breath taking.  Our timing was perfect. For the next 2 hours we rode into the setting sun creating some wonderful vistas that we'll remember forever, arriving at our hotel around 8pm - 434 miles done and time for a beer!   The great thing is we get to ride it all again tomorrow on our way back up to Everglades City when we plan to do some filming too, so stay tuned.


  1. That is one classy mouse.

    Here's hoping he brings you sunny skies and dry twisty roads for your journey.

  2. There is nothing better than a British best-ager riding a Harley with a mascot mouse to get the ladies' attention ;-)