The other day I came out of work after a late meeting to be greeted by the the Harley-Davidson sitting there with a flat back tyre. One of my colleagues tried to look on the bright side by reassuring me that it was only flat at the bottom, but I think this was just trying to make me feel better.
However, I wasn’t really worried, except for the fact that this would delay me getting home for my dinner. After a phone call to the lovely people at the RAC, I settled down for a wait. I didn’t have too long to wait before one their bright orange vans arrived, quickly located the problem, which was a hole in the tyre and proceeded to make a temporary repair.
I had been asked a couple of times whether this was a tubed or a tubeless tyre and I neither knew the answer nor realised that the question would prove to be significant.
It seems that temporary repairs are only for tubeless tyres.
After some searching, the RAC man announced his verdict. It had a tube.
This meant that I could not ride it home, even though the temporary repair was holding up. I would have to wait for a truck to come and take me home.
He also announced that I needed a new back tyre as the tread was on the very edge of being legal.
I settled back down in the office at work and eventually the truck arrived. We manoeuvred the bike onto the back of the hi-tech sliding tipping flat bed and the driver proceeded to strap the bike down. After this was done, we finally set off for home with me in the truck.
Apart from getting no dinner until about 11pm, things were OK. Our RAC membership had covered the costs of both of my rescuers and the bike was safely put away at home.
The next step was a phone call to Robin Hood.
No not that one; the Harley Davidson dealership in Nottingham.
They would come and collect the bike, fit a new tyre and carry out the service that was also due.
The ball park price that we were given during that phone call was a bit of shock. We are looking at about £700.
Oh well, nothing is cheap on a Harley.
The shop van turned up this morning and as I write this, the bike is in their tender care. At some point the phone will ring and my Visa card will go pale.
But the bike will be back on the road.
There is some debate going on in our household at the moment about whether we are going to keep the bike. With my job being almost an hour away from home, a car is a necessity, especially for next winter. My heart wants to keep the bike and walk to work if the weather is too bad to ride, but the well-hidden sensible bit of me realises that walking to Swadlincote from Nottingham is not an option.
Anyway, whether the bike stays or leaves, it needs to be roadworthy.