The Royal Enfield

Posted by on Nov 12, 2008 in Travel | No Comments

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“The overall name of these interrelated structures is system. The motorcycle is a system. A real system. …There’s so much talk about the system. And so little understanding. That’s all a motorcycle is, a system of concepts worked out in steel. There’s no part in it, no shape in it that is not in someone’s mind. I’ve noticed that people who have never worked with steel have trouble seeing this- that the motorcycle is primarily a mental phenomenon.”

- Robert Pirsig Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

The decision to buy a motorbike brand new doesn’t fully gel with many of my prescribed ethics. In fact it will allow me a greater level of personal freedom, this luxury is one of the bigger roots of my personal energy consumption.

Which is why I best justify it as an emotional decision.

It’s a reward, a bonus to myself for the work I’ve done and continue to do. It is a return that has made itself possible by the freedoms and independence I’ve accepted and taken responsibility for.

However I am responsible to others in my life also. Which is a good part of the reason for posting this.

Deeply in Love with my partner and family, and knowing this is reciprocated I understand their concern for my welfare, health and happiness. Riding a motorbike expands your exposure to the world. The connection builds between the rider and the landscape. The danger and ugliness of the region are equally opened up to.

The risks I’ve navigated and balanced in my life apply naturally to riding a motorcycle. I accept and manage them rather than deny they exist. I don’t put up barriers to protect my beliefs in-fact I aim to remove them so that they do not collide with the realities of living.

I learned the hard lessons of speed on the ski slopes. My body has had a taste of the bloody side that exists with the loss of control. There is a very firm gut feeling when safe and fun creeps towards reckless and endangering. Thrills no longer satisfy my longer term perspective.

The parallels continue. When exposed to elements outside of your control (such as weather, other people who may not have such a grip and animals or hazards) there is a development in the line of precautionary intuition. A feeling when something isn’t right to slow down or pull over and take a break. Likewise when skiing a piece of chocolate and some water is often enough to regain the confidence and energy to safely re-engage.

I am healthy, happy and able to take my time to get where I am going. If ever these change, I promise I will not be riding my motorcycle.



Stepping into your shoes Guy, I can easily see why you want that beautiful new motorbike and the joy and freedom that it offers, cruising through the beautiful countryside around you, surrounded by the fresh air and the pleasure of driving the motor bike. My dad wouldn’t let me even have a pushbike as a child, but the desire didn’t go away and maybe that is part of the reason I love riding my bike so much. However stepping into his shoes and my shoes, with the deep love we have for you and Kirrah and the strong desire that we don’t want anything to spoil your wonderful health and happiness, please be very careful. I would feel better if you have every possible piece of safety gear with no short cuts when you are riding, much easier to prevent an injury than try and fix it later, just think of Jessie’s shoulder. So please buy all the best protective clothing and do all the advanced motorbike training courses available. Then take it easy and enjoy your new motorbike, remembering that we all love you very much and want you stay completely happy and healthy.


The bike has arrived in Brisbane. Now I get to test my patience while I wait till Ben needs to next go up there for work so that we can put her on the back of the ute and bring the bike home. Then till I get my license.

I’m getting a few extras fitted too. New tready tires for our road conditions, and some crash bars.


Today I woke up at 2:50am. I ate some light breakfast. And got my bag for Brisbane ready. Kirrah was up and we were off the Kyogle Train Station.

I am at Ben’s now. It is 12:32am. It has been a very long day. I saw the first light of day. I saw the sun rise. And then I met Ben. We spent the day, between business meetings, in his hotel room. He used up to three phones at once – quite a feat really.

I saw the morning star. Now I am at Paradox St. It is very late.

I am still up. I’ve done some energizing breathing.

I first wanted my own bike when I was 16. I was patient.

I am 23 years old now.

My new Enfield from India is in the garage 15m away. I wanted to take it for a test ride, bringing helmet. I instead used the time of the mechanic to learn about the servicing and works of the bike. He then helped us strap it down tight. We left the centrestand up to prevent it fracturing. Instead we sat on it and tightened the straps against the suspension of the bike. That is where it stayed from Brisbane to Tintenbar and tomorrow Home.

I am going to have a great sleep in tomorrow – Wayne has baked fresh bread!



The bullet looks beautiful. But the best thing is that my Indian friend Sush told me is that it doesn’t go as fast as a bullet. Sush would love this motorbike and has been telling me all it’s virtues, strong, smooth, powerful but not fast. He said he has seen some amazing sights in rural India, where he said the bullet is the main form of transport for the framers transporting their goods. Small dairy farmers transport their milk cans astride the bullet down little rough little trails to the larger dairies. It said it is very well designed for a smooth comfortable ride


Royal Enfield was the brand of the Enfield Cycle Company, an English engineering company. Most famous for producing motorcycles, they also produced, amongst other things, bicycles, lawnmowers, stationary engines, and even rifle parts for the Royal Small Arms Factory in Enfield. This legacy of weapons manufacture is reflected in the logo, a cannon, and their motto “built like a gun, goes like a bullet.”