Tom Johnson's European Motorcycling in the 1970s

This is a collected series of stories posted by Tom Johnson (THOMASJ@MAILGATE.GEMSTONE.COM) to the WetLeather Mailing List about his extended motorcycling trip through Europe with his friend Dean and assorted companions. The story plays out as Tom has the time to recollect and post it. Like most great folktales, it's not finished.


Continuing the discussion of police overseas...
Some foreign police are OK
On making friends in foreign countries -
The US passport is not your ticket...
Companions of note
Toilet paper is a necessity
On intentions of travel
On violating all 12 MSF rules in one day
Life and dead motorcycles
Paying for your beer before you get it


On Aug 6, 1993, 11:50am, Tom Johnson wrote:

OK, you asked for it.

I've done this a couple of times so I will start with the first adventure. Time is the early 70's.

Dean and I flew to the UK with expectation of buying used motorcycles to tour on. It turned out that all used motorcycles reflect the vat tax and it was cheaper to buy a new Triumph with understanding that at the end of the summer we would export the bikes back to the US. This avoids many local taxes and is still a good idea.

The dealer was very nice and after we pawed through his 50 or so used bikes and settled on the two new Triumphs, he said he would set up the bikes (service and install luggage racks) for us. This would take about two hours because there was another American getting a Norton ahead of us.

We walked over to the local pub and met the other American. He was a serviceman over from Germany. We talked for about 15 minutes before they came over to tell him that his bike was ready. We suggested that he wait for us and we would ride down toward Dover with him. However, he was in a hurry and declined.

We stayed for a couple of beers and "pub food" and then returned to the dealer to collect the bikes. After tieing on all the misc. junk I had brought, the bike looked as if we were planning on a trip across Africa (I'll tell about that trip in a later posting if anyone is interested.) Hence...RULE 1. Pack everything you think you will need and then take half of it out and leave it home! The one good aspect of the extra weight is that I could now reach the ground with my toes. Those early 70's Triumphs are tall off the ground.

By the time we left the dealer, it was still misting (doesn't it always in the UK?). The new bike, the extra weight, the two (or three) beers, the plane ride, the conversion to driving on the left side: all contributed to us riding very, very slowly and with great caution. It was probably a good thing; about 10 miles down the rode we came upon a motorcycle accident. It was the Norton and the rider was dead.

We were the first people who could give the police any information about the individual. He was carrying minimum id. (RULE 2. Carry good, easy to locate statements about who you are, who should be notified in an emergency, any medical requirements, what to do in an emergency if you are in a coma (some countries do not automatically give you medical care they require authorization - Arabic countries are particularly bad about this, and it should be in English, French, and other "local" language.)

The accident appears to have be a combination of a number of things: the road had just turned to cobble stones, they were wet, the rider was going fast on a road that he had never ridden on, the road had just narrowed to UK standard two cars can get past if they are both small, there was a curb on each side made of rough rock about 8 inches high, the accident was on a curve, there was only about 14 inches from the curb to a wall on each side of the road (typical on lots of small UK roads as you enter older towns. The rider had entered the curve at a high speed but not excessive according to a local rider who saw the accident (excessive in my opinion depends on how many times you have been around the curve). However, the person being American had drifted to the right side (probably forgot the left hand driving due to the lack of traffic). The corner was a left hand corner and a car was coming toward the rider.

Those are the facts. Now what happened. Truth is we really don't know what the thoughts of the rider were. I suspect that the recognized the error of what side of the road he was on. What he did to correct we don't know. The result was that the bike (from witness accounts) hit or slid into the curb. This threw the bike from a leaning position into an upright position. Something caught the bike and it flipped end over end. The rider was first slammed into the wall and then the bike rolled over him as he clung to it. Witness said it rolled over three times as it slid down the wall.

My hands still sweat when I think of this. Sorry to start the story this way, but it is the way the trip started. I suppose that the lession here is complex but reduces to "progress slowly in unfamilar driving conditions, progress even more slowly in unfamilar riding condition."

We immediately pulled out the AA guide to Bed & Breakfast places, found the address of the closest one, looked it up on the AA's BIG MAP, and spent the night.

The AA is the UK equivalent to the AAA only better. Their maps and publications are excellent and they exist in almost every little town and big town. The BIG MAP has a scale that is almost 1:1. It shows evey road and most houses. A must for traveling in the UK. It is in 15 inch by 11 inch (or there abouts) book format. Cann't find bloody nothing without it! Rule 3. Get good local maps. Most auto organizations overseas are great sources. They are available almost everywhere, helpful, and have good maps. Get the most detailed (scale) map you can. Things overseas are packed together and you need the detail.

So much for the first day of travel. If this is interesting and useful to the group as a whole, I will continue. If not, I will do it off line with just those that are interested. Most of the other incidents are interesting without the gore, some are even humorous. I guess that you had to be there. I really didn't capture the horror of this incident.


On Aug 9, 1993 5:44pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

Continuing the discussion of police overseas...

It turns out that cars and cycles in many countries have a "registration" plate and not a "license" plate. The difference is that a registration plate simply says that the car is registered and says nothing about whether or not the car is licensed. In the UK the "license" for cycles used to be a little round tag that you placed on the side of the cycle. Yeh, thats right, on the side of the cycle.

This caused some interesting situations. My bike was in for service one day and a Canadian rider offered to carry me up to an aerodrome to watch the antique aircraft fly. Now, he a purchased a used bike to save money. I think that he went a little overboard on the money thing as what he bought was a 334 cc two cycle Zundapp motor cycle. It smoked like hell and couldn't get out of its own way with two people on it. But it was transportation.

On our way out of London we were caught in a "license" check. They were waving vehicles off the road and then checking vehicle "papers." The Canadian told me to tell them that the license sticker was on the right side of the bike if they asked me.

We pulled up between to cops and Jon hands a stack of papers to the cop on the right. The cop on the left then asks me where the "sticker" was and I pointed to right side of the bike. This satisfied the cop and he walked back to the cycle behind us. About this time I started paying attention to what the cop on the right was saying. The last thing he asked was where the "sticker" was? Jon tells him it is on the left side of the bike (cop is on the right, remember). And the cop waves us on. When we stopped, I asked Jon about this and he admitted that he didn't have a sticker!

Two points: The police in rest of the world often set up spot checks. France is particularly bad about this. You will be riding down the road when out steps a gendarme and waves you over. They randomly pick cars and cycles to check. They will expect to see your drivers license (get an international license from the AAA but they will also want to see your US drivers license), the cycle registration, the insurance paper work, maybe your passport when they find you are an American, if you are traveling in Asia or Africa they may want to see your WHO card, and anything else they can think of!

(Never heard of a WHO card? Get one! It is a World Health Organization card. Have your doctor fill it out with the dates of all your recent shots. There will be specific places for verification of shot types. I don't care what some people tell you...get all the shots you can. Yellow fever, Gamugobulin, etc. The card will list what is available. Lots of countries will not let you in if you are coming from an area where a specific disease is considered epidemic and you have not received the shot. Also, take a malaria prophylactic if you plan of traveling in almost any part of Africa and several areas in SouthEast Asia.)

The habit of cops pulling people over is common. Don't drive by one if he waves you over. I speak from experience. I drove by a cop who blew his whistle and waved at me in a small town. I did it innocently as I had no idea that he meant me. (WHO ME!). They were waiting for us at the next town. Lots of cops in foreign countries don't chase you. They just block the road ahead of you and behind out.

This was a painful experience in more than one way. But I learned one very important lesson. The US embassy will not help you! I was told (and it was later confirmed) by the local US embassy that they were not there to help US citizens who got into trouble. They were there to handle relationships between the two country and not to help individual citizens outside of the services required by law (lost passports is about it). Remember this when traveling overseas....You probably cannot expect either help or support from the local embassy. If they are in a good mood they might give you the name of a honest local lawyer. Too many US citizens go into foreign countries with the attitude that "I'm an American. You cann't do that to me; its against our law! And if you try to do it, I will sic my embassy on you." Bull Shit! Don't learn the hard way. Respect the local law. When in their country, you are governed by their law. Don't expect any help from the US Embassy. And remember that lots of countries don't feed the people in their jails. You either bribe the guard to bring you food or your family brings you food or you take it away from weaker prisoners (not the recommended solution). Get me drunk and I will tell you about the guy we took food to for two months in an Arab prison.

Oh well, enough for now. I'll tell you about some good encounters with police in my next posting.



On Aug 10, 1993, 12:45pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

Some foreign police are OK

Not all foreign police are bad. In general they just have a lot more power then US cops and they use it. We actually had some very enjoyable experiences with the Police in foreign countries.

A good example was the motorcycle cop in Belgium. Dean and I had just gotten off the ferry from the UK and were lost as hell and confused as hell. Its hard getting use to driving on the right hand side of the road after a few weeks of driving on the left side; so, I suppose that what attracted the attention of the officer was us going done the road on the wrong side.

Since we were still close to the ferry depot, he just waves us to the other side of the rode, turns around, and motions for us to follow him. I figured that this was it; we were going to spend the next two days stuck in some jail. I begin to really worry when we get to the edge of town and he picks up the speed to about 75 mph over little tiny roads with water canals on each side. I figured that he was trying to kill us for sure and the idea of small town southern cops crossed my mind more than once. After about five miles he pulls into a field filled with motorcycles and riders. I knew it! They are collecting all the bikes and riders together and then they are going to shoot us.

Happily, that wasn't it at all. It was the local club's field day. There were all kinds of riding games to compete in. Riders from all over had been coming to it and the police had been directing lost riders all day. So, when he saw us on Triumphs and on the wrong side of the road he figured that we were lost Brits and gave us an escort to the games. Everyone was delighted to have to Yanks attend and we were made honorary members of the local club (I still have the patch they gave me.). The only bad aspect was that I fell off my bike (at about 5 mph) while trying to stand up and eat a bagel hanging from a string (you had to be there). The bike fell on my foot and I broke a small bone (Dean kick started my bike for three weeks while it healed). One of the riders was a Doctor so the medical care was free and the club filled me with genevier (a gin like substance) to ease the pain. The policeman even came back to escort us to B&B "too be sure that we made it." Quite a show. The cop leading the way, Dean and I trying to act sober, and about ten of the local cyclists.

After checking in, we went eating and drinking with the "group" which now included the cop since he was off duty. This was when I learned about the "manned" toilets in Europe. About 11 pm Dean and I begged to be excused and began the stagger back to the B&B. I think there were about 10 other people with us, but it may have only been five. As we passed the local train station, Dean discovered that he needed to throw-up RIGHT NOW. Luckily, the men's john was right there; unluckily, Dean didn't make it to the toilet. I would guess that he most of one wall and a good part of the floor before he got it head in the toilet.

When Dean finally finished and got up to leave, he discovered a little old lady about 5 feet tall and about 5 feet around who was just turning from dead white to bright, bright red! Dean says that his first thought was, "What's a woman doing in the men's john?" The Belgies were now rolling on the ground in fits of laughter. And I was really confused. About then the woman came uncorked and I have never seen a madder person or one who could talk so fast in my life. I suspect that it was French, but it was absolute obvious what she was saying. Dean states to this day that he saw his life flicker before his eyes. Did I mention that she had grabbed a mop handle?

I think that she actually poked Dean in the stomach a couple of times as he backed into a corner. However, before she killed him, the Belgies managed to control their laughter and rescued Dean. It turns out that many, many public toilets in Europe are cleaned and maintained by older people as a way of supplimenting their income. You will often see a dish with a few coins in it in the restrooms. It isn't even too uncommon to have a older woman stilling in the men's room or cleaning while you piss. It is expected that you will leave a "tip" for the use of the clean restroom.

Well, after the Belgies explained who we were and after Dean apologized and gave the woman the equivalent of about $5 (an ungodless large sum in those days), all was forgiven. In fact, the lady began to treat Dean as a long lost grandson. She had him sit down and she cleaned up his leather jacket and insisted on washing his face.

The next morning the cop and several of the local motorcycle club showed up to escort us from town (I think it was because they liked us). Several ended up riding about 30 miles with us (maybe it was so that they could be sure that we weren't coming back).

So you see, not everyone hates Americans. And even if they "hate" America, they will usually forgive you your origin and make you welcome if you follow a few simple rules: Be friendly, accept that this is not American and things will not be done the way your are use to them being done, show interest in what is going on around you (don't compare it to the US), participate in the activities of the natives if you are invited, show humor and see the humor in things, smile lots, share your experiences, offer assistance, show respect.



On Aug 10, 1993, 5:30pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

On making friends in foreign countries -

Forgot one thing about making friends in foreign countries.... Try to speak the language. A simple phrase or two does wonders to break the ice.

For example, I love France. I'm not too crazy about Frenchmen (the women are ok), but France wouldn't be France without the French (did that make sense?). Frenchmen can be really rude acting.

We were in Paris and somewhat lost. (One of my "short cuts"; I think.) Dean was close to boiling, but I was have a great time. I had just learned how to ask for cold milk in the small stores and had plopped myself down on one of the street benches with a liter of cold milk (in a funny tube like thing) and a half dozen chocolate eclairs. I think Dean was upset because I couldn't remember where we had parked the bikes and I didn't know where we were. I knew we must be someplace important because of all the toursit types running around. (We had parked the bikes at the edge of town and rode the subway in to down town. Then did a lot of walking.) Its really fun to sit with the natives and watch the toursits; but Dean was getting worried so I agreed to find a local gendarme and ask for directions.

After finishing the milk and eclairs (admitting to liking something besides beer won't get me kicked out of wetleather will it?) we wandered off in search of directions. When we finally located the gendarme, he was busy with two really obvious Americans. They were asking directions and he was explaining in French that he didn't speak English. Each time he explained they would ask again in a louder voice. (Amazing how some people think that volumn has something to do with understanding.) After about 5 minutes they gave up and wondered on.

This didn't look prospective, but I decided to try my ten French phrases and see if I could get anywhere ("Excuse me sir. Have you seen two English motorcycles that seem to have lost their riders?") I gropped around for about a minute and a half making a real fool of myself when the gendarme says in really great English, "Oh, my dear sir. My English is much better than your French. Let's do this in English." ALL RIGHT! We got back to the cycles with excellent instructions given all in English.

What was the difference? I suppose it was that we didn't "expect" him to speak English and that we cared enough to try his language. Respect?

However, we Americans are not the most disliked people in the world. The most disliked people depend on where you are. In Holland, it is definitely the Germans who hold the title of most disliked.

Dean and I often stayed in Youth Hostels. Lots of fun and cheap accomidations. All you have to do is get a Youth Hostel card and directory. Problem is that you are suppose to be young and traveling on foot or bicycle. Fudge! Well, not all countries enforce the rules as much as others. And it was fun to talk with the college students who were traveling from hostel to hostel.

The hostel in big downs are usually really over used and poorly maintained; but the ones in the country are delightful. One night in Holland we decide to see if we could stay in the hostel in Broek im Wasserlan (Means trousers in Waterland, I'm told). Nice little place out of Amsterdam of about 250 people. Just the right distance to leave the bikes and use the thumbs to get into town.

The standard routine was to park the bikes around the corner and walk to the hostel. This usually worked even though no one was really fooled. (After all, we were wearing leathers and carrying helmits.) When we entered this hostel we were met by one of the largest men I have ever seen. One look and I knew that this guy didn't put up with any shit. I figured we were out of there in short order. I was really wrong! He asked us where we were from and when I said Oregon he told us all about his time in the merchant marine and how you could smell the pine trees miles out to sea off the Oregon coast.

He then told us to go get our bikes so that we could lock them in the area behind the hostel (even though there was no chance they would be stolen, but you couldn't trust some of the toursit (Oh yeah!)). We had a great dinner at the hostel and spend a long time talking with him and his son and daughter (so what if she was 17 and blond). Hostels do have rules though and we helped with dishes just like everyone else and it was lights out at 11 pm (doors lock then too; this guy ran his place pretty much by the book).

Did I mention the 20 or 30 Germans who were there? They were doing a walking tour of Holland. I would guess that they ranged in age from 14 to 21. They were full of high spirits and a lot of low spirits too. In fact they brought beer into the hostel (a no, no) and insisted on coming and going (and talking) after lights out. About 1 am I awakened with someone shaking me. Its fairly dark in the dormer (large room with bunk beds, you supplied your own sleeping bag here but that varied from hostel to hostel and country to country), but I could make out the Dutchman shaking me. That was it, he didn't really care for Germans in the first place and this group had stepped on his Dutch hospitality too much. Would we like to help him throw the Germans out the door?

Sure...Anything to help a friend. It was a great fight. He would pick up two Germans, one under each arm and dump them out the door, Dean and I would pick up one between us and follow him out. His kids kept anyone from coming back in (I think they had short clubs.) There were a couple of Australians who were doing most of the "passivacation." They didn't seem to mind blood and I hate blood especially my own. It was the world against the Germans. We through them all out and they stayed out. The next morning they were huddled on the front step and he let them back in to get their things.

Great people the Dutch. I love Holland and I love the Dutch. Particularly the natural wonders: tulips, dikes, windmills, topless beaches, the people...
Ah, yes...Anyone for a quick tour of Holland instead of the Lolo Pass?



On Aug 11, 1993, 5:04pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

The US passport is not your ticket...

Did I happen to mention that not every country thinks an American Passport is carteblanc for entry into their country?

Somewhere in Europe there is this really great motorcycle road. The road of roads. The rider's dream. Problem is that I don't know where it is. I could take you right to it, but I have no idea in hell where it is. You see, I've got what you might call a "homing pidgeon" instinct. Once I have been somewhere I can always get back. Problem is that I have to do all the steps in reverse to get there.

This use to drive Dean nuts. In fact, I rarely looked at the map. I'd usually just say something like, "This looks about right and away we'd go." That's how I stumbled on the "road from heaven." I think that it is somewhere in Austria, but I'm not sure. It starts at the foot of some Alps and winds up a beautiful valley filled with "Zimmer Fie's" (the German equivalent of Bed and Breakfast) that look like something that you would picture out of the book "Heide." Wide road with beautiful sweepers from valley side to valley side.

I have a good clue for you as to where it is! At the top of the valley is this tunnel. Now its not just any tunnel. It was dug during WWII by forced labor. It seems that the Nazis need a better route into Yugoslavia than trying to go over the Alp that sits at the head of this valley. So, having a lot of Yugoslavs and other people they didn't like, they put these people to work digging this tunnel. They didn't really care how many people died digging it and a lot died. Just find the tunnel and you've got the road.

Problem is that Dean and I didn't know where we were. First off, we didn't realize that this tunnel started in 'X' and ended in Yugoslavia. Second, we didn't realize how llooonnnnnggg this tunnel was. Heck, I thought that the nice man at the entrance was just a toll taker. Turned out that he was Austrian Boarder Guard (but we didn't figure that out until the other side).

Anyway, this tunnel was still in the basic condition that it was when it was dug. That is, it was narrow. One lane in each direction. Trucks used their lane and part of the other lane, but not to worry there were turn outs every so often. The inside of the tunnel was rock (what the heck do you need concrete for when you got good Alpin rock). The lighting was an incadesent light about every half mile (no shit..every half mile, didn't I say this was a looonnnngggg tunnel). It was dark, dark, dark. And the ventalation was bad at best. After about 3 miles of this I began to loose it. It became damn hard to keep the motorcycle upright. I kept feeling that I was leaning so I would counter lean and then I would be leaning!

Eventually we popped out the other end of the tunnel and into the hands of the Yugoslav Boarder Patrol. Now at this time the cold war was still going strong and Yugoslav was considered to be very much a Communist country. Most of Europe just glances at your US Passport and away you go. But the whole world is not like that. There are these things called Visas (not the credit card! the real thing!). I really do know all about them as I have about 5 passports filled with the damn things, but I had never intended to arrive so unexpectedly in a Communist country. (Let me look at that map now, Dean.)

Usually, you plan out your trip and find out what countries require visa and which countries wave them. Then you go to the appropriate embassies in the current country you happen to be and get the visas for the next couple of countries that require them. (Plan, plan, plan, execute.)

Now I would like you to picture this. Here you are, a very serious yugoslav boarder guard of about 19 years guarding your country from the capitalist running dogs when out of the tunnel pops two Americans. One looks pea green and the other looks like the guy who gets shot with the shotgun in EasyRider. (Dean had hair to the shoulders, a full face of hair, wore sunglasses and had a blue bandana around his head - he could have at lease had a RED bandana).

We were caught and caught good. I wasn't about to make a run for the tunnel entrance and by now there were several tough looking people surrounding us. Dean was giving me hell about having our bikes comfuscated and I was trying like hell to keep track of where our passports had gone. (Without that passport, you ain't getting out of anywhere!)

The passports disappeared and hand signals let us know that were to push the bikes over THERE and leave them and we were to sit HERE. Two hours went by and I figured that they were getting a truck to take us to jail; however, about then a boarder guard shows up with a bottle of plum brandy, something else that they drink a lot of in Europe but I can never remember the name until someone says it, our passports, and a smile! I could tell right off that it was going to be OK!

We had a couple of drinks. Toasted Yugoslavia. Toasted the US. (Hell, the Yugoslavs never were much for being Communists.) And had it explained very carefully to us that we were guests of the country and to be very careful about what we did and said. As we drove away, he said one more more thing that was to have great impact on our trip...."When you leave our country, your motorcycle has to go with you."

Tell you about that next time. But I guess the point is, "When you travel overseas, check to see which countries require visas and which don't."


passports AND visas (check.)

On Aug 12, 1993, 3:20pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

Companions of note

It was in Yugoslavia that we ran across the Canadian, Jon.

Several times during the trip we had met and traveled for a day or two with other bike riders. But Jon was to be come a constant companion.

We were riding from the Yugoslav boarder down to the town of Ljubljana when we came across this THING stilling beside the road. Since it looked vaguely like a cycle, a rider and a flat tire, we stopped to offer assistance.

I say vaguely because the bike was a 10 or 15 year old Zundapp. I believe that it was a two cylinder two stroke with about 300-350 cc displacement. It general it looked like it was held together by shear will power and a few well placed pieces of wire. Jon wasn't much better looking. He was wearing a leather coat (not jacket, coat as below the knee) that he had purchased in the Flea Market in Amsterdam. (Great flea markets in Europe but they sometimes only meet once or twice a month - not a tourist thing.) The coat was kind of a dark green and look like something the Gestopo probably wore. His helmit had been white at one time and then sprayed black. It now had lots of dents and slashes with the white showning through.

He had no tools and had really no idea of how to get the wheel off the bike. In fact, he had never ridden a cycle until coming to Europe. Someone had told him that he needed a leather coat and a helmit and that is what he had purchased (cheap)!

We used our tools to get the wheel off the bike and the tire off the wheel. (Tools you take should include a really good file or two, but that is another story.) We patched the inner tube and put the whole thing back together. Jon was delighted and invited us to stay with him and his relatives (whom he had never met). We just had to follow him.

I must say that his riding style was interesting to say the least. He looked a little bit like Ichabod Craine fleeing from the headless horseman. Green coat tails flying behind him and two cycle exhaust billowing behind. I don't think that the bike had any suspension as every now and then he would bounce four or five inches off the seat.

Down hill we were doing about 75mph and up hill we did about 35 mph. I'm not sure how he got around corners since I couldn't see him in the two cycle smoke. This bothered me for awhile (polution you know), but at one of our stops to replenish necessary bodily fluids, John pointed out that most of the cars were Russian or Polish and had two cycle engines too! Turns out that two cycle engines are a lot easier to manufacture as they take less technology and less tool. Hence, at that time, 40 or 50 percent of the cars on the road were two cycle monsters. I say monsters because most of these vehicles seemed to burn only about two thirds of the oil-gas mixture they pumped through their engines.

We didn't realize this until about an hour later. Jon (still in the lead) had disappeared around a downhill, flat corner at some unknown speed and I was second in the line. About half way though the corner, the rear tire slide a foot to the outside. That wakes you up real quick. Fortunately, I didn't do anything and things straightened themselves out. Dean wasn't so luckly. He was behind me and when he saw my rear tire slide, he grabbed a lot of front brake. Wrong move. Sound of metal hitting pavement.

Fortunately the damage was relatively minor. Mostly hurt ego and there wasn't any traffic. The only near bodily injury was went Jon putt, putted back up and said something like, "Geee, how long you been riding." Fortunately, Dean's elbow had landed the funnybone squarely on a rock so he could see the humor in the statement."

We were now well up into narrow (but paved, sort of) mountain roads to the Northeast of Ljubljana and had "only a little ways" left to go to the relatives house. Luckily it was getting dark and Dean agreed to continue.

About five miles further on we encountered a very large, very slow diesel truck. (By the way, diesel trucks in the former Soviet bloc direct their exhaust at the ground (no stacks like US trucks). I am sure that this is to aid the resurfacing of the roads done by the two cycle cars.) It was amazing to see this truck and on coming cars pass. Neither would give way until the last second. The sport of watching this soon grew old compared to speed we were making and the diesel smoke we were breathing. However, I had judged the risk of passing as something at or below suicidal so was resigned to the punishment.

It was at this time, on an uphill corner, that our leader (Jon) decided to pass. Remember, Zundapp, 35 uphill flat out, slow to accelerate, Jon? Yep..He pulls out to pass. I dropped back to allow safe stopping distance and Dean pulls forward with an evil grin on his face to see the blood and gore.

I was sure that Dean wouldn't be disappointed, because as we rounded the corner what to our wondering eyes should appear but a car coming from the opposite direction. Did I mention that these people don't give way? Stopping definitely isn't in the book either. Did I mention also that this was a long, two trailer truck and that Jon was only just passing the first trailer?

I was too busy trying to figure out how hard I could brake without loosing it on the slick road to watch. But when the car went past me and there was no scrape metal in the road, I started paying attention of real time events. And there was Jon just clearing the front of the truck! The question was, "How the hell had he managed to not become a hood orniment or fall beneith the truck wheels?"

Jon never slowed down, but the truck driver pulled over at the next wide spot in the road. We finally made Jon's relatives house (they actually seemed pleased to see us) and we asked Jon how he had managed to keep from being killed.

His answer was something like this: When he saw the car he realized that he could accelerate enough to get around the truck (no shit). He also believed that he couldn't brake hard enough to get back behind the truck without falling down (probably right). So, he had matched speed with the truck and pulled into the gap between the two trailers! He said that it was really scary (duh!). He figured that the trailers overlapped the front and rear tires of the cycle with about two inches to spare and that his head was about four inches from the rear trailer.

No shit. It really happened just that way. I believe that if the driver of the truck had braked or speeded up at all, Jon would have been dead. Or, if the tongue between the two trailers had been shorter, dead. But Jon was one of those people who nothing ever happens to; it just happens to those who are around him.

I'll tell you more about Jon in the next installment.



On Aug 13, 1993, 6:23pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

Toilet paper is a necessity

It was in Yugoslavia that I learned to drink plum brandy and that I discovered that toilet paper was a necessity of life.

Jon's relatives were very nice people. However, I was sure they wanted to get rid of us when they pulled out the cognac. Now I have been told that there is really good cognac, but I have yet to be served any. It just seems a terrible waste to me to distil white wine into this stuff. Cognac has all the bad properties of poor white wine and none of the good properties of a good whiskey.

After two days of cognac even Jon suggested that we visit his other relatives who were vacationing on the Yugoslav Adriatic coast. And so out of the mountains descended the motorcycle gang from hell.

Wasn't much of gang as Dean's cycle began to run rough at any speed above 30 mph. It's not at all impressive to have a two cylindar, two cycle Russian car pass you going up hill. But...we finally made it back to Ljubljana.

Now here is a real hint. Ride a motorcycle that the locals are familiar with or be prepared to do all your own work. The locals knew lots about BMWs, but they didn't have a clue about Triumphs. The best we could do was a "eine moment" and they would disappear for ten or fifteen minutes. So, we spent the next two days trying to trace the problem ourselves.

We'd work for and hour and then try it out. Work great. Load everything up and start out. Problem shows back up in 10 or 15 miles. This was a very un-fun part of the trip. After two days of trial and error when found that the problem was an intermittent connection on one of the connectors going to one of the coils. Don't you love Lucas Electrics?! (I forget most you have never had to ride with them. Let me just say that Lucas is know as the prince of darkness and that Sir Lucas, the owner of the company, is reported to have said that Gentlemen do not drive after dark.)

I drank a lot of plum brandy during this time and I discovered that a bottle of plum brandy falling from the back of a moving motorcycle will not break 7 times out of 10! I assume that it is something like dropping eggs and has something to do with the horizontal vs vertical motion. If any of you care to try this out, I would be more than happy of help you drink half the bottle (I never tried with a full bottle.)

It was also during this time that I discovered the purity and holy aspects of toilet paper. As you move toward and down the coast of the Adriatic the climate and people become more eastern mediterranean in nature and aspect. And it was somewhere down here that we began to encounter the "bombsite" toilet in great numbers.

For those of you who have not had the opportunity to travel where the "bombsite" is used, please let me enlighten you to the fact that the US style sitdown toilet is not a worldwide standard. In fact, I would guess that a majority of the people of the world uses the "bombsite" as the standard toilet.

These toilets consist of a flat porcelain fixture level with the floor. In the center of the fixture is a hole approximately eight inches in diameter. On either side of the hole and slightly in front of it are two pads. The user is expected to approach the hole, do a 180 degree turn, pull down the pants (or up the skirt), backup until the feet are on the pads, and then squat carefully to the proper height. The problem is that unless you grew up with these things, it is a little hard to accurately judge the correct position for dropping your load. I think that it was Dean who came up with the term "bombsite" and it seemed appropriate.

Believe me when I say that these toilets are not the place for long contemplative sessions ( and I sometimes do my best thinking while sitting ). It is also difficult to keep from dragging your pants on the....porcelain as you squat (I see why many men in some countries wear a skirt type arrangement).

Another aspect of eastern culture is that toilet paper definitely is not furnished.

Now, get the weather, "bombsites", no toilet paper. We needed only one more thing to complete this disaster and it took the form of a fountain (spigot really) beside the road. It was hot. The bikes were hot, the leather coats were hot, and we were hot. The road was two lanes. Traffic was heavy. When the road side spigot came up, we all stopped and soaked in the water. It was great. Cool, refreshing, and only a slightly metalic taste.

Let it be said that my intestines held on for a good hour after we had tanked up. At that point it became necessary to stop immediately. There are few 'public' toilets in Yugoslavia, but severe diarrhea will cause you to forget all about anything but getting your pants down. Jon and Dean thought that the whole thing was very, very funny. They even considered it humorous when I tore up T-shirts to use for toilet paper. They considered it less funny when I grabbed the map and threatened to us it. I exhausted everything we had that could possibly be conceived for use as toilet paper. I even used a few things that could be termed as "highly creative."

It was at this point that God saw fit to complete this comedy of errors. Dean and Jon suddenly discovered that they too had acquired my malady. Fortunately for them, we were passing what might be called a 'public facility.' It had no doors and did not look as if it had been cleaned in years, but then I did say that severe need makes any port look good.

But God was not finished. She saw fit to include the final two aspects of the equation. "Bombsite" toilets and no toilet paper. As I remember Jon just dropped his bike as he ran for the toilet. Dean at least got the kick stand down. I will say, however, that Jon did have his pants down as he cleared the door while Dean was still struggling with buttons on his.

Perhaps it was just as well for Dean that he didn't get his pants down as quickly. Jon planted on foot on the floor pad and attempted a 180 degree spin into position, but discovered too late that the floor was almost as slick as the Yugoslav roads. To put it bluntly, he let go and sat down at the same time. Missed the hole too. Dean actually made it. I was rolling in the dirt.

At this point there was some serious negotiations over the remaining "excess" clothing that could be used for toilet paper and clean up. I was definitely negoitating from a strong point being the only one still standing (so to speak).

And this is how I learned the godly and holy aspects of toilet paper. Thou shalt always carry at least two full rolls of pure white toilet paper on thoust motorcycle. (eleventh commandment) (especially when traveling overseas. bottle water is also a good idea TJ)

Well...someone should tell our to be world rider about this as I see that he is no longer reading the group. I was really doing this for him. I have tried to make some of the things that I have seen and learned interesting for him and for you. However, I now have a deadline at work and my next two weeks are going to be 16 hour days. So...I'm going to quit for awhile. In a few weeks I will ask if there is still interest in my continuing these postings. If there is, let me know and I will go on.

Someone asked if these really happened or if I enlarged on these in any way. They did really happen and I have not enlarged on them. This is what life is really like. None of the thing we call life sitting infront of a CRT all day. Take a motorcycle trip; better yet, take three or four months and take a motorcycle trip in a foreign country. Some of it will be great and some of it will be really bad, but you will live! Don't have an itinerary, don't have a time line. Let it flow and what will happen to you will be a lot like the things I have described. They're really real man; every damn thing
happened just like I have told it. Go see for yourself and as soon as my kids get out of high school, I'll be back out there with you.



On Aug 20, 1993, 7:46pm, Tom Johnson wrote:

On intentions of travel

On Aug 18, 1:49pm, NANCYMAR wrote:
> > Anybody for flying to, say Munich, and renting bikes for a week
> > or two?
> (raises hand and waves it frantically in the air)
> me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me!
> inq. naughty
>-- End of excerpt from NANCYMAR

No insult meant to any of you good people, but Dean and I made up the following while in Europe. It is to be sung (chanted) to the 10 little indian children's song.

10 little bikers
all in a row
saying, "To Europe
we want to go!"

10 little bikers
working at the grind
in a short time
there were only nine.

9 little bikers
talked to their mates
it soon came to pass
there were only eight.

8 little bikers
started off as brethern
some got angry and
there were only seven.

7 little bikers
always something to fix
couldn't leave it broken
there were only six.

6 little bikers
talk a lot of jive
didn't really mean it
there were only five.

5 little bikers
got to the door
one fell flat
there were only four.

4 little bikers
had to agree
one took off
there were only three.

3 little bikers
knew what to do
one went broke
there were only two.

2 little bikers
sitting in the sun
they got to Europe
and had them some fun.

Dean and Tom Summer '72

There is a story in this. In fact, it is a story. It takes a whole lot of commitment to a goal to make something happen. It ain't all fun and games. Enthusiasm is great, but it takes more, a lot more.


On Thu, 20 Jan 94 4:21 PM, Tom Johnson wrote:

On violating all 12 MSF rules in one day

To some of the new subscribers this may not make a lot of sense, but to the rest of you, I am continuing my stories of my European motorcycle trip. I figure today is a good day to do this as it gray out and a few good thoughts tend to make my day a little brighter.

After Dean learned to fly, I was left with little recourse other than to travel alone or to travel with the mad Canadian, Jon. This choice was something akin to being given a choice of either being shot or hanged. I chose to follow Jon around and see if the bad luck that overcame those around him would continue. This episode starts a week or so after the last and takes place in central to southern Italy. The reasons for my vagueness will soon become clear.

Even since the times of the Romans, the Italians have been able on occasion to build spectacular roads. Absolutely straight, wide and able to move cohorts of troops rapidly to and from areas of battle. It was on one such road in Italy that I almost managed to loose Jon and his Zundapp.

I had been following Jon for almost an hour. Perhaps I should say that I had been living in two-cycle smoke for an hour. When we had started out that morning, the day had been delightfully warm and unbelieveably clear. However, an hour of fumes had dimmed my view of the world and two stroke motorcycle considerably. There was no question in my mind but that I should take the lead. After all, how could 250cc(?) hope to compete with the mightly 650cc Triumph.

I began my assault from approximately .5 klicks to the rear as this was the closes man or beast could stand to approach the Zundapp. I did notice though that the Italians are very friendly people as they all waved at Jon as they passed after forcing their way through the vales of blue smoke. Unfortunately, my first assault almost ended in disaster as I lost sight of Jon and the Zundapp at a critical point and had to brake hard to avoid running over them when they suddenly appeared out of the smoke screen. I truely believe that the differential in our speeds had been about 60 mph when he appeared about 12 feet in front of me. It was at this point that I broke the first of the MSF rules: If you lock the rear brake, keep it locked. I did and I didn't. That is, I locked the rear brake (blind terror can make you do that) and, not knowing better, I immediately released it. I am not entirely sure exactly what happened and perhaps one of the MSF instructors would enlighted us, but the bike took an immediate lean to one side.

It may have been that this lean saved both of us as I distinctly remember passing through the rear tire and wheel of the Zundapp and then slowing down as Jon disappeared back into his smoke screen.

Having failed the first assault, I dropped back to let the adrenaline levels drop and contemplate the meaning of life. It was obvious that blitzkreig has both advantages and disadvantages and I resolved that the second pass should be made with all due deliberation. As they say, when in Roma, do as the Romans. This assault would match the grandure of the Roman legions as phalanx upon phalanx of troops marched on the terrified enemy.

OK, what I really planned to do was work my way up slowly through the smoke so that he could see me coming. I also planned to gesture at him in the Italian manner so that he understood that I wanted to discuss something with him.

The problems with the Roman method of attack is that the enemy must be stationary, that the enemy must recognize that they are under attack, that the enemy recognize the overwhelming power the attacker represents and that the enemy must understand the meaning of fear. I am sure that Zundapp riders meet none of these qualifications or else they would not ride Zundapps. Perhaps the Romans sent embassaries to their enemys to explain these things before they attacked.

However, I could not communicate these things to Jon and he took my first assault and hand waving to mean that we were going too slow. As I increased speed, so did he and so did the volume of smoke. I felt much like the Coyote and the Roadrunner. I, as the Coyote, was infinitely more intelligent, better prepared and more deserving than the idiot out in front. Unfortunately, like the Coyote everything seemed to work in the favor of the Roadrunner and to the detriment of the Coyote. Another words, it is amazing how fast a Zundapp can go on the level.

I believe that it was about 80 mph when my vision, or at least what I could see through the smoke, began to blur. At first I attributed this to the well known vibration of 650 Triumph Twins, but then I noticed that while Jon and the Zundapp were blurred, the surrounding brown Italian hills were still, except for the smoke, sharp and clear. It took a moment for my mind to deduce that the effect was isolated to the rider and cycle ahead of me! To this day I have never seen another cycle and rider vibrate in this manner. The entire bike and rider seemed to offset about 1 inch in all directions at the same time. I think that the closest example that I can give would be the starship Enterprise as it approaches wrap 12 (design limit) and begins to shake apart.

The sheer wonder of the event was quickly overcome by the wonder that any rider would continue that far into what looked like a terminal situation without taking appropriate action. It was at this point that both the bike and the rider came hurdling back through the smoke at me!

I swear, I truly believe that the bike and rider came back through the smoke at me. I repeated my first manuver of the day and managed to miss the beast for a second time. I do believe that I, the Triumph and the smoke continued down the road for another .5 klick before we realized that the Zundapp was truly behind us.

When I and the Triumph managed to get back to the Zundapp (the smoke probably left in discust), we politely asked Jon what he had been doing and why he had done it. His comment was that the engine had stopped running and had slowed him very quickly. I commented that I had noticed something like that and wondered if he had chanced to notice any vibration in the bike immediately before this. He said that "Yes, he had noticed a slight vibration; but that he had attributed it to either a tire out of balance or a vibration point in the engine that would disappear as soon as his speed picked up a little." I then commented on the friendly Italians and he agreed that they seemed most concerned about his welfare.

Had I been thinking, I would have offered to go for help at this point and then become lost in Europe. However, instead I offered to tow the Zundapp to the nearest town.

So ends hour two of the longest day. I will continue the detailing of this day for your consideration next week if there is any interest.


On Tue, 25 Jan 94 5:33 PM, Tom Johnson wrote:

Life and dead motorcycles

Hmmmm....I guess that if I want any more chocolate I'm going to have to continue this story.

As you probably remember, Jon and I were now sitting beside the road contemplating life and dead motorcycles.

The map seemed to indicate a fair sized town 5 or 6 klicks off the road at the next exit. It seemed likely that we could either find someone to look at the bike from the viewpoint of fixing it or a place to leave it where we would not get fined for littering. The choice we had to make was whether to leave the bike and go looking for help or to take the bike to the help. Sort of like the decision of whether Mohammud would go to the mountain or the mountain would come to Mohammud.

Jon was opposed to leaving the bike because all his worldly belongings were tied in various places and to various parts of the bike. Remember that this was before the days of bike luggage and tank bags. Jon had tied his sleeping bag to the handle bars, a backpack to the tank and a suitcase kind of rested on the exhaust pipe and was tied back to the strap across the seat. There was also a duffle bag tied to the back of the seat. He said that it was really very comfortable except that the suitcase tended to make the bike pull to one side.

I foolishly agreed to tow him and the cycle to the town. Although I had never done this before, the principle, at leasted, seemed fairly straightforward. I had a piece of rope that was approximately 8 feet long. We would tie the rope to the back of my luggage rack. (This piece of castiron hung back about a foot behind the rear tire. Nice flat area to put things on, but it tended to make the front wheel a little light on the ground.) Jon would then sit on his bike and hold the rope which would be wrapped once around his handle bars. If I waved, he would release the rope and we would be free of each other.

It should be noted that on that beautiful, straight Roman road this towing scheme worked wonderfully. Without the smoke, the golden brown hills of south central Italy emerged once again. The day and my mood were much improved. We quickly reached the exit and road that would take us to the city on the map. It was here that I discovered that sometime following the fall of Rome the Italians had forgotten how to build roads that went straight for more than 100 meters. I look back today and know that I should have realized this from the suttle clues Italians have been feeding to the rest of the world for years. Have you ever wondered why motorcycles and cars like Ducati and Ferrari that handle so well on curved roads are built in a country with the Roman mentality of straight, level roads? No? I can tell you why! It's because somewhere about the fall of Rome the concept of a straight road was lost to the Italians. For centuries, they built roads following the Medici principle: twisted and convoluted.

It was here that I broke another of the MSF rules (actually several if I remember what Mike told us this summer).

I had entered a rather sharp corner at slightly too high of a speed and then discovered that I couldn't do anything to get the bike to lean. Remember that at this time most of us were self taught riders and the method of cornering was to lean the bike through weight shifting or magic depending on your learning process. For most of us, we never really knew what made it lean; it just tended to lean when we needed it.

Now picture this if you can. A tight corner on the side of a steep hill. No guardrails, no shoulder. You are sitting on a bike that has suddenly gone beserk and seems committed to throwing itself off the road in a fit of spite. Look through the corner? I should say not. I was looking everywhere for anything. It was then that I discovered the source of my problem. Yep. 400 pounds of Zundapp and rider who were over the edge of the pavement and putting enough strain on the rope to prevent it from leaning into the corner.

I waved one hand, I waved the other hand, I waved both hands at the same time. He wouldn't release. All I can remember is looking down and seeing the broken edge of the pavement with my tire running down it. I know that I tried to steer through the corner; not counter-steer, steer. This probably made things worse, but we made it through the corner without my tires leaving the pavement.

When I got stopped, I asked Jon why he had not released. In essense, he had. As he went off the pavement, he had grabbed the handlebars with both hands, but he had wrapped the rope twice around the bars instead of once. This makes a very effective knot when sufficient pressure is applied and it would not release because one part of the rope passed over another. One of our Mechanical Engineers can probably explain this better than I.

Happily, we were within a klick of the town and Jon did not have far to push the bike.

As it was close to noon and I felt the need for re-hydration. I left Jon to find an establishment where I could confess my sins. Happily, the Italian equivalent of a bar was close by. As I remember, there were several old me sitting at tables on the sidewalk drinking what appeared to be beer. The glasses they were drinking from were little larger than a small juice glass and the beer came in bottles that were about one quarter the size of an American beer bottle. However, when in Rome do as the Romans, so I sat down at a table and waited.

It seems that you can sit forever at an Italian table and not be molested. The attitude seems to be that you obviously know what you are doing and when you want to do something else you will let people know. It was here that I discovered an interesting Italian tradition of paying for what you want before you order it. I'm not sure that these establishments still exist in Italy, but the concept is interesting. If you pay for it first, you cannot run out without paying your bill. There is usually a person sitting at a cash register near the door. You go up and pay X amount of money. You then go and sit down. When the waiter comes over, you order and he checks off the correct amount from your credit tab. If you don't have a credit tab, why bother to come over?

OK, so I'm slow. When I got this figured out, I looked at the price board and figured out the price of the beer. It was cheap; really cheap. I then proceded to the cashier and payed an amount equivalent to 8 of the beers. When the waiter showed up (I must say that he was there the instant I sat down.), I order my beer. He brought one beer.

Now my Italian wasn't good. In fact, all the Italian I had learned I learned from the TV show Combat; but we quickly got this thing straightened out. I wanted a big glass and all eight beers at the same time. Heck, a person in my mood could drink one of those little beers in one gulp and I planned and need to do a lot of gulping.

I think that I scandalized the entire town. Morning beer is supposed to be sipped. Those little bottles are meant to be drunk over 30 minutes to an hour period. Someone mentioned this to me in passing as we discussed motorcycles, idiots and life in general. Jon's fame had even reached even this little town and I got lots of sympathy. Several people had seen us on the highway and a couple had even witnessed my brush with immortality.

Italians are very nice people and after the first eight, I didn't have to pay for any more. An Italian rider told me that motorcyclists are like cats. We each have nine lives. In the life of a motorcyclist, he (or she) has incidents inwhich we should rightly have died but don't. After the eighth such time we must remember that there will not be a ninth escape. I am very sure that this is what he said. Each of us became more lucid as we drank. We all agreed that I had just used one of my eight lives.

I will continue next week and tell you more about the longest day.


On Fri, 11 Feb 94 5:01 PM, Tom Johnson wrote:

Paying for your beer before you get it

When we last talked, I was sitting in a bistro somewhere in central Italia trying to discover the meaning of why beer came in such small bottles and why you had to pay for it before you got it. (I asked about this when I got the January issue of Motociclismo and was told that paying upfront is still common in smaller towns.) Jon had gone looking for someone to look at the Zundapp and several of the local bikers had stopped by to look at my Triumph and tell me how lucky I was. All this and it wasn't even noon!

I had just reached the point in my "debriefing" where I no longer considered murder a viable alternative to most problems when Jon re-appeared. It is amazing mental associations we make. The smell of baking bread brings on thoughts of warmth and security, the sound of splashing water cools a hot day, and, like a red flag waving the front of a bull, the sight of Jon can raise the ire of even the most saintly person!

Now I am not a religious person, but it was certainly interesting to watch the Italians sitting with me cross themselves as Jon approached. There is also a particular gesture Italians make to ward off evil hexes. However, I can report with empirical evidence that none of these work. Jon walked completely unharmed up to our table and sat down.

It was then that I first saw the individual walking behind Jon. I think that I can best describe him as the original ink spot. I would be polite if I said that there was some spot on him that was not coated with grease or oil. I would also be lying. This was true the dirtiest person I have even met and that includes some of the individuals who I have seen at DJ's swap meet.

Jon's return had been prompted because he needed to know what the blob was trying to tell him. I cannot begin to tell you how much fun it was trying to get this information with ten people all waving their hands and talking at the same time. Never ask a group of Italians to explain something. Ask only one. When you ask the group what usually happens is that each individual is sure that he can explain it correctly and that everyone else is messing it up. As a consequence, they will typically forget what the original purpose of the discussion was and degenerate into telling each other how stupid they are and how simple the explanation actually is. When this happens, the best thing to do is sit down and wait until a clear winner emerges. It was a good thing that I had bought all those little bottles of beer as I, Jon and the blob finished the remainin bottles before the victor emerged.

The bottom line was that the Zundapp had survived with only very minor damage. Damn. The basic problem was that Jon had filled the tank with almost pure oil instead of the standard gas/oil mixture. At this time and perhaps still, there were enough two cycle scooters and cycles in Italian that they had pumps that dispensed gas/oil mixtures. Not only that but because the ratios of gas and oil varied somewhat depending on the vehicle, you could set the pump for the correct ratio for your vehicle. Great if you know what you are doing, but Jon had set the pump for the highest oil to gas ratio available. I think that it was something normally used to run sewing machines, but like I say my Italian is a little rusty.

This explained the copious amounts of smoke that the bike had delivered prior to complete failure. It also explained the vibration as the blob believed that one cylindar had stopped firing due to fouling at about the same time that the diaphram carb had stuck open (or something like that). I believe he said that high speed and a crankcase full of oil gas mixture did interesting things or was it could do interesting things. Whatever.

The bottom line was that he knew Zundapps inside and out and that we could go to lunch and he would have it fixed sometime in the afternoon. This precipitated another argument that I will not go into and that ended with some of the local riders suggesting that we go out to lunch at some little place in the mountains. Which precipitated another argument about who would take Jon along on the back of their bike. I simply pointed out that what with the luggage that I was carrying it was not possible for me to take him and I refused to take the luggage off and leave it at the bistro even though I was sure that they were all honorable people and that it was really a religious thing that made me keep it with me. They all seemed to understand that and I told Jon they were arguing about who would have the honor of taking him which seemed to satisfy him.

Although it is not stated in the MSF class, I am sure that it is implied: Never, never try to follow the local riders through their home roads. Its true of use too. I know that after I ride the same road 30 or 40 times in the summer I know where the holes are, where the slick spots come up, and what lines to follow through the corners. It also helps to know ahead of time what is going to come up on the other side of the corner and that the milk truck is always around bend five at noon. It scared the shit out of me and I quickly slowed way, way down. One of the riders saw my distress and dropped back to ride behind me. Rule: get in front of the locals and try to force them off the road whenever they try to pass (or don't even try to keep up). It was fun anyway.

(I meant to make this longer, but it is friday and after 5pm. I'm going home. I'll finish this up on Monday.)

Maa Salama!


updated 1995/01/21

WetLeather is a trademark of Carl Paukstis