The Biker Couple next Door
We are Fabi and Chris from Würzburg in Germany. Both of us finished our studies in the beginning of 2019 and decided that this would be the perfect time for a long distance motorcycle trip. Chris got the distant idea to do the trip at the beginning of 2018. One of our main sources of inspiration was the travel report of Wolfgang (Wolle), who documented his trip to Mongolia and the Pamir Highway on his website.
The two of us are a couple since over eight years. Yet, we have never shared a flat for more than a couple of days. The reason for this was that Fabi’s studies took place in Darmstadt while Chris was studying in his home city. Therefore, we both joke that this trip might be the definite test if we are able to live together in a confined amount of space ;).
Chris does no longer know, where exactly he got the idea to get his motorcycling license. In his memories, he woke up one morning and decided “I am getting my motorcycling license”. Restrictions in the EU meant that with an age of 21 he could only get a license giving him the permission to ride bikes with up to 48HP.
Given his young age, money was of course a scarce resource. That meant, that requirement nr. 1 for his first bike was: “be cheap”. As a result, he rode a Suzuki GS500 built in year 1995 for his first two years. While owning his “Suzy” he also got his first experience in doing mechanical jobs on his bike.
After two years he was able to extend his license to remove the HP restriction. Following this, he purchased an Aprilia Shiver 750. Unfortunately, he got the distant idea, of doing a long distance motorcycle trip around two weeks after purchasing the Aprilia. When the plan got more concrete, it became obvious that he would have to sell her again in order to buy a more suitable (read: more comfortable) bike for such a trip. This still makes him sad, as he really liked the looks and the sound of his Shiver.
After many evenings were spent on reading reviews, blog posts, forum entries etc., he finally decided on a BMW R1150GS. The powerful, air cooled engine combined with good wind protection sounded like the perfect base for such a trip. But disaster struck (ok, not really), when he was finally able to convince Fabi to a) get her license and b) join him on the trip. Some more evenings spent on the Internet and it became clear, that the most important and widely accepted piece of advice for people travelling together is: “Get the same bike”. With Fabi deciding on a BMW F650GS, the next step for him was clear: sell the R1150GS and buy a F650GS. All bike-related steps from here on are listed under “Our Bikes”.
Fabi had a pretty bad time getting her car driving license, failing the exam and being all stressed out about driving. At that time, she had nothing to do with motorcycles and never thought she would be attending driving school ever again. But someday Chris came up with the entire motorcycling thing and Fabi soon became his pillion rider. She enjoyed it so much, that she thought about starting to ride by herself. But the amount of costs associated and especially the fear of failing discouraged her from fulfilling this wish.
When Chris had the idea of going on a long distance trip during the time between studying and starting his career, Fabi cought fire. Always being a coward, she never wanted to study, do an au-pair or voluntary year abroad. But she felt that such a trip would be the perfect way to get her out of her comfort zone and experience a real adventure.
So with a little help by Chris (he dragged her to the driving school), Fabi started to learn to ride motorcycles! She had some trouble learning the basic skills of motorcycling and dropped the poor bikes from the driving school three times. But after three, really hot, months in the summer of 2018, Fabi finally got her motorcycle license at first attempt!
Because we already knew we would do this trip, Fabi got the travel proof and reliable F650GS as her first motorcycle. From now on, she would ride that pitiful thing in any weather. Sometimes Fabi still can’t believe that she is riding a bike. Getting the license was the best decision she ever made, restoring some self-confidence on the road an being really proud of accomplishing that goal. This was were the actual planning and preparations fort he trip began.