Exploring the Unknown

Exploring the Unknown
Representing the 99%!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Riders Against Hunger - On Rock Community Services 6th Annual Fundraiser Ride!

1st annual Riders Against Hunger
I will never forget when I first met Kim Reid, and how I was taken by his story of  running a local food bank. I had a feeling at that moment that I wanted to get this know this dude. We had ended up on a ride together up through the mountain in Rigaud, Qc. It was a glorious day and we had joined a small group for an afternoon ride. It took me 10 seconds to say yes that I'd attend when Kim later that day told me of his first annual Riders Against Hunger in September of 2012.

Ride to Pitalkhora Caves, Chalisgaon, Maharashtra By Sabya Sachi Ghosh

Pitalkhora Caves
The ghosts of Pitalkhora Caves. On my descent to the caves I heard some people talk. This made me glad as I was all alone and thought that at least the guard and his companion will give me company. Tourists being there was out of the question since my bike was the only ride parked at the mouth of the stairs. On my reaching the site I was met with emptiness and those voices had ceased too. Perhaps the talkers were present inside some caves. Thinking this I kept an eye out for them while exploring the caves. I did not find anyone and got a bit alarmed not spooked though. Then while exploring the furthest caves on the other side of the cliff I heard humans again coming from the main chaitya hall. I looked up only to see some parrots making merry which uncannily resembled human voices spoken in an unfamiliar language. I quickly fixed my telescopic lens and captured those green goblins, those ghosts of Pitalkhora. Indeed I was the only visitor there, having spent 3 hours alone exploring the caves with not a soul in sight, not even the ASI guard was anywhere to be seen. On my climb back to my ride I met with a man headed towards the caves. He was the two hours tardy ASI personnel, amazing!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

My Moto Guzzi V7 Racer (aka Bella) 6000 Kilometer (3728 Miles) Review!

Bella Out and About in The Eastern Townships -
Semi-Abandoned Businesses Reminding Us of a Different Time
In just over a month of having picked Bella up from storage we found ourselves right back at Rock Moto Sport for my 6000 kilometers (3728 mile) service. To say that she has been the center of my attention is an understatement. 😉 From visiting the Boscobel Ghost Town and meeting up with B.A.C.A. Montreal to see them off on their 100 Mile Run to some Back Roads Therapy with Junkyard Villain and his lovely Harley Davidson Heritage Classic; we have even helped a couple of motorcycle learners by taking them to their motorcycle road exams at the SAAQ! Ownership of my Moto Guzzi V7 Racer has been exquisite. 😍 Indeed, if I had any complaints at all they would be mostly about some of the accessories that I purchased last year. Like any proper motorcyclist, I have also succumbed to purchasing even more accessories for Bella from a very lovely British fellow this spring (It's an addiction, I know). 😜

Thursday, June 22, 2017

The Backroad Ball 2017 - Another Successful Year!


The Backroad Ball is not only a women's only motorcycle adventure weekend & campout. It's a celebration of female motorcyclists. Inspired by events such as California's "Babes Ride Out" and Washington's "The Dream Roll" the creators of The Backroad Ball are striving to create a sense of community amongst all female motorcyclists in Eastern Canada as well as surrounding states & areas. Registration is open to all licensed female-identifying motorcyclists as well as moto-curious women regardless of motorcycle make or type, club affiliation, or age (19+). The first year for the event was a huge success and we can't wait to share what we've come up with for year two with you! Check out #BRB2016 to check out last years good times! Come sit around a bonfire and swap stories, enjoy the talent of local musicians, take in the beautiful New Brunswick scenery on organized group rides, make new friends, get tattooed & rock out to your heart's content! We can't wait to meet you!
- K & B

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Start 'Em Young With A Kiddimoto Balance Motorcycle!

Birthday Girl Atop Her New Kiddimoto Kawasaki Ninja!

Kiddimoto kids balance motorcycle is the perfect gift for your little biker in the making. I found this little gem at Rock Moto Sport last week when I brought Bella in for her 6000 kilometer (3728 mile) service. The little wooden balance bike was hanging from the ceiling as part of their promotional advertising for Kawasaki Motorcycles. A Kawasaki Ninja no less (No. 66) it's fitted with a wooden frame, wheels with aluminium edge, air-filled tires and seat and handles made of foamed material. It's specifically made for children from 80 to 105 cm height. With my daughter's 4th birthday around the corner, I couldn't resist! 😎

Classic Machines Paris Circuit Carole 24-25 Juin, 2017!

Classic Machines, Le Week-End 100% Passion!


C’est ce week-end qu'aura lieu Classic Machines, sur le circuit Carole, aux portes de Paris. Comme depuis deux ans, c'est l'événement qui fait rouler et se rencontrer les amateurs de belles machines sur la piste du circuit Carole. Un événement 100 % plaisir, où plus de 200 motos - des années 1940 à 1991 et le café racers - et une vingtaine de side-cars roulent sur le circuit sans les contraintes d’une course, puisque ça n’en est pas une. Juste le plaisir de rouler, entre amis, au rythme que l’on choisit. Pas de course, pas de chronomètre, pas de classement juste l’éclate durant les séries qui s'enchainent comme des perles durant tout le week-end. 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

A Review of Richard Hammond's A Short History of the Motorcycle (2017)


I'll be teaching Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Studies this autumn again and decided that in addition to the late Robert Pirsig's book which the course itself is named after (just replace 'Studies' with 'Maintenance') I also decided to include another book by Richard Hammond of Top Gear fame. Whilst Hammond has since moved on to bigger and debatably better things in the form of The Grand Tour and Drive Tribe with his lifelong friends and co-hosts James May and Jeremy Clarkson, it's nice to see that he still has time to publish a book or two every now and then. Unlike Top Gear, Drive Tribe allows room for more than just exotic cars as motorcycles are given their dues. Not surprising really given that both Hammond and May are avid motorcyclists, both boasting a collection that the majority of folks like us can only dream of. Hammond's newest book, A Short History of the Motorcycle is a testament to his love of two wheels and in keeping with his target audience, provides plenty of pictures too. That is a good thing. Me likes picture books. 😜

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Geoffrey Darwent: Biker, Painter, Storyteller!

I met Geoffrey Darwent back in 2014 on a ride to Venise, Quebec with the Dragon Riders. He was riding a Kawasaki Vulcan 800 at the time which was begging for a Blue Collar Bobber Kit. Even then I knew he was more than just your average biker. He is also a Canadian painter. Self-taught, his prolific technique is quite unique. His paintings often represent nature as well as life's mysteries, beauty and peace. Each painting is made using only the highest quality acrylic paint and tells a story. Below are just some of the examples on offer at present.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Becoming A Tattoo Artist - Draw Or Else!

Draw Or Else!
Pic/Gif © gifin.com
Over the course of the last seven months I have noticed that despite the prevailing belief that to become a tattoo artist you need to be an expert drawer, the truth is this is not always the case. It would be fair to say that any tattoo artist should have an artistic talent. However, many artists are opting to create beautiful and intricate designs via programs like PhotoShop. There are two schools of thought on the latter. Some argue that the technology is removing the artist from the art whilst others say that it is a natural extension of the artist's talent. Whatever your thoughts on the matter, as far as I am concerned so long as the artist can actually tattoo, it's all that matters. I use to draw regularly when I was younger but once I moved to Ireland I allowed it to fall to by the wayside. It wasn't from a lack of interest. Rather, there aren't many people willing to pay for handdrawn images anymore. 😔

Ride to the Dhankar Monastery of Spiti By Sabya Sachi Ghosh

SuperGrass Enjoying The View Of Spiti Valley
This is a small collection of pictures from Sabya's (aka The Artist) trip to the Dhankar Monastery of Spiti. Enjoy! 😎

Ride to the Sun Temple of Nirath, Rampur Bushrar, Himachal Pradesh By Sabya Sachi Ghosh

Royal Enfield Bullet Classic EFI aka SuperGrass! 😜
The Nirath Sun Temple is a tiny 8th century structure dedicated to Surya. it stands beside the fast flowing Satluj River about 20 kms from the small town of Rampur Bushrar. Nirath is a tiny village and the temple is surrounded by kitschy ugly houses and attended to by an obnoxious castiest creature of a Brahmin Priest, who had the audacity to question my caste lineage and proudly proclaimed that had i been a 'bhangi' my entry to the temple would have been barred! Well I did give him a piece of my mind and that took away my peace. Also, like most uninformed 'morons' who attend lesser known temples, he claimed that this structure was mind mind bogglingly old, to be precise '4000 crore years and built by the Pandavas'. Well I did not correct him, that slimy lizard. inside its Garbhagriha there are some sculptures of Vishnu and Surya but their craftsmanship is of inferior quality. However, the sculptures on the outer walls of the temple are different and in a way attractive. I did ride to this place on my way back from visiting the upper Himalayan Monasteries of River Spiti. The monks of those places are not arrogant idiots like many temple priests that I have met. Unlike these imbeciles those monks are well informed about the antiquity of the monasteries they are living in. I have always wondered about the factual ineptitude of the priests of temples and their claim to prehistoric antiquity of the sites they look after. What do they get out of misleading a visitor, I wonder?

Friday, June 9, 2017

Becoming A Tattoo Artist - The Ugly, The Crooked & The Hopeful

Opening Soon!
Pic/Gif © WiffleGif
As my apprenticeship continues so too does my anticipation for the day when I can tattoo something other than pig skin. Nevertheless, there is more to tattooing than simply applying ink to someone or something. Todd has given me the opportunity to set up and take down his tattoo station for him. This includes but is not limited to sterilizing the area with antiseptic cleaners, preparing his tattoo machines, setting up the equipment that goes with the latter such as the appropriate needle sizes and all the other goodies that inevitably start to add up the overall cost of getting a tattoo. Stenciling and drawing, let alone actually tattooing inevitably is only two out of several parts of the job when you consider how much work goes into the hygienic and preparatory practices of tattooing. That being said, however, I wish I was learning to master the art of tattooing itself as quickly as I have learned how to actually set up a tattoo station.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Installing a Phatmx Carburetor on Darwin, My 1976 Honda CT70!

Darwin Foils Me Again! 😡
Darwin, my 1976 Honda CT70, seems to have a mind of his own! Despite having spent no less than four months at L'Amis Denis being restored he seems rather resistant to the idea of running at all this summer. According to L'Amis Denis, Darwin needed a new carburetor. With the help of a fellow CT70 enthusiast that I met via the Honda CT70 Trail Enthusiasts group on Facebook, I purchased a new carburetor from Phatmx for the princely sum of $93.39 Canadian. They packaged it and sent it the same day they received payment and within a matter of a few days it was at my doorstep waiting to be installed. I am not going to lie to you. I procrastinated about installing it. It's really not laziness but rather an intimidation by most things mechanical. Don't get me wrong, I've GrOwN a pAiR oF NuTs over the last decade and have wrenched on my bikes plenty of times. However, I am always hesitant to start a new project out of fear of screwing things up. I prepared myself by first watching How To Clean The Carburetor On A Honda CT 70 Mini Bike By Don The Small Engine Doctor. His instructions are so detailed that I figured installing a new carb would be half the work and time... or so that was the plan.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

RiDe iN PeAce: Richard Grondin (aka Bullet) 1961-2017

Richard Grondin (aka Bullet) in 2012 With His New Suzuki M109
Ride In Peace - 1961-2017

Carol Artico has informed me that Richard Grondin (aka Bullet) passed away on Tuesday, May 30th, 2017. 😔 I had the pleasure of meeting Richard back in 2012 on a ride with the Dragon Riders. He had literally just picked up a brand new Suzuki M109 (pictured above) and was naturally as happy as could be. We rode rode to Venise, Quebec together. He was an interesting man, passionate and opinionated. What biker isn't? 😉 Though we didn't stay in touch as much as I would have liked, I never have nor will I ever forget him. Someone once said, "four wheels move the body and two wheels move the soul". May his final ride be endless with clear skies and a warming sun setting against him.

Send Your Condolences

Friday, June 2, 2017

DOT. Sydney to London On A Wing And A Prayer From Make Your Bones


"This 14-minute documentary is perhaps one of the most honest illustrations of what life on the road is really like. It isn't just a rose-tinted travelogue of how wonderful the world is - it shows hardship, it shows struggle and it raises a few questions about the act of travel itself."

How To Clean The Carburetor On A Honda CT 70 Mini Bike By Don The Small Engine Doctor


Whilst I inevitably purchased a brand new carburetor from Phatmx for Darwin, I came across this helpful three part short series on how to clean the carburetor on a Honda CT70 by donyboy73, aka Don The Small Engine Doctor! Don is rather soothing to listen too as he takes you through a step by step process of dismantling and cleaning your carburetor. See below for the remaining two parts of this series. I'll be sure to let you know how Darwin is doing after I have installed his new carb! 😎