As is outlined elsewhere, although semi-retired, I spent the final years of my working life delivering buses, coaches, and an occasional fire-service appliance to all corners of the UK. Then, having completed the delivery, driving a hire car to the next job or back home. As a consequence, I covered several miles a week - driving five hundred miles, or more, in a single day quite often.
It's hardly surprising, therefore, that - since retiring - I've become slightly frustrated by being 'housebound' and have been considering ways of addressing the issue. For a while, I toyed with the idea of getting a camper-van. When the boys were young, we had a couple and really enjoyed them. Nowadays, however, my better-half doesn't share my enthusiasm for 'travel'; so, returning to the concept of considering what had worked for me in the past, motorcycling came into the equation.
Now, at this point, I have to say that I'm extremely conscious of how easy it is for my generation (especially men) to imagine that it's still possible to do what they did when they were teenagers. Furthermore, I absolutely understand that this isn't the case. For example, matters such as declining physical strength or balance need to be taken into consideration and, with this in mind, I doubted that I would have the control of a motorcycle that I may have enjoyed in the past. That said, however, I also considered the merits of adding a sidecar. Having had one when I came out of the army in the fifties, I wondered if the fact that they remain upright when stationary addressed my current concerns with balance and the need for physical strength.
All of these ruminations, by the way, took place last autumn (2010) and as a measure of how serious I was, I had even gone as far as to speak to local training organisations about the various licenses required to ride motorcycles. In the event, however, since winter was fast approaching, I had decided to delay any decision until this spring; not least because an extremely knowledgeable motorcycling neighbour was due to return after a period overseas.
He returned recently and, having listened to my points of view, came up with what seems to me to be the ideal 'package' to suit my requirements - and I refer to a three-wheeled scooter (not the mobility sort, by the way). What is particularly appealing is a capacity for these machines to remain upright whilst stationary (like a motorcycle and sidecar). What is even more appealing is that some models can be legally ridden using a car license - and in so doing, eliminate the need to undertake a quite expensive series of procedures to gain a motorcycle license.
A further fortunate option to save a bob or two presented itself when I saw a new one (with only 55 miles on the clock) being advertised for significantly less than the list price. So, after my neighbour had given it a road-test, I decided to buy it. With a saving of that magnitude (nearly four figures) even if it turns out to be not such a good idea, I'm unlikely to make too much of a loss on the investment.
Here's a video of the model I bought........