The first ride on the 1200 went well.

I struggled at first getting it off the property since it has brick tracks for car tires and then grass everywhere else but I managed to keep the rubber on the road.

We drove through a very nice road with some twists and then through town stopping to pick up supplies and meeting A&L’s friends.

We ran in Pepe and he invited us back to his house so we took our time and went up a dirt road so I could get used to being off tar roads.

I immediately popped up out of the saddle like the BMW performance rider training taught me and was able to handle the bike really well. I am so grateful for the training. I would have been lost without it.

The road into Pepe’s home was quite rough but his land is beautiful. Pepe and his wife Marie have huge dogs that are a pretty red brown color and super sweet. We just visited for awhile before we had to get back home.

We had promised Boeta that we would ride awhile with him but when we got home, I was spent. It was very hot and I had not snacked or drank any water so I chose not to go. Andrew and Boeta rode till almost dark and we had a yummy dinner again.

They call a bbq, a braai and they cook thick pieces of steaks, potatoes, beets and other veggies.

We took the next day off and spent the day packing the pannier boxes and checking the tents out. Alta and Gerrit’s grandkids were there so we played with them and they helped us set up the tents. They were super sweet but very smart since we can’t speak very much Afrikaans and they don’t speak English but hand gestures work perfectly.

We were invited over to Pepe and Marie’s house for a braai so we went over there in the evening and had a really good time just chatting and getting to know each other. They have travelled the world via boats and we really got along great. I gave Marie one of my bracelets.

I couldn’t sleep so I stayed up reading my kindle. I had thought about Franco all day, especially after his sister and mom both commented on my last blog and it just made me tear up. I showed it to Laura cause she saw me start crying but I couldn’t get the words out to tell her what they had written. It was just so kind, loving and beautiful.

I woke up early and got the rest of my stuff packed and loaded on the bike. We hugged Alta and I gave her one of the bracelets that I had made and couldn’t stop the tears from falling. She knew that I was scared, nervous and she did her best to calm me down and gave me a big hug. It made me feel like a little piece of home was hugging me.

We headed out to Mug n Bean for coffee and a small breakfast and Gerrit met us up there. He rode with us for a very long while. He is a phenomenal rider. He was doing crazy antics like standing up and waving both arms around, standing on one side of the bike and taking one hand and leg off. He gave truckers high fives, stole a puffs of cigarettes from random cars and was just dancing around the whole time. I know he really put the show on for me since he was watching out for me and trying to get me to relax. He is such a kind man.

The time came and we split to the left and he kept going on his own trip and we turned onto a stunning side road. It was very flat and almost no trees and looked identical to California.

The sun had been playing peekaboo all day with us and I just looked at the rays shining from behind a cloud and all I could think was “I see you Franco”. I know he was with me and making me relax.

I was very nervous on the main roads with all the traffic and everyone maneuvering past each other on a single lane road. I just took my time and was very careful when I passed people and made sure to get over to the far left of the lane so others could pass. We got up to about 90mph/140km on the straight parts but we were mostly cruising at about 70mph.

It got very cold as the sun got lower and I got very stiff and crabby. Luckily we made it to the hotel before the sun went down. Checked in then went for a quick bite of dinner.

The power was out so I am still waiting to take a hot shower and warm up properly. There is a lot of noise in this hotel. People, dogs and road noise.

We have about 600km to do tomorrow and will probably be tenting so time to get some rest and get warm!

Author: firemaker1

When I lost the man that I loved, the life I knew shattered in an instant. Not only did I lose him in my life, I lost him and all the plans we had made for our future. This is my journey to learn to live again.

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