375 miles Time to pick the bike up! Well my 95 quid hotel room was crap, too hot to sleep with the windows shut but too noisy with them open. Also £3.80 for a chocolate bar I got up at 7 (I was too excited to sleep any longer) and had breakfast before asking reception about taxis to get the bike, they had no clue how much it would cost and couldn't call one. In the end I flagged one down and offered cash after checking online to see how much it should be. After a slightly scenic route to the shipping place (I don't think the driver knew if it was right, he took off as soon as I was out of the car) and eventually got my bike, still fully wrapped. I asked the guy if he had a knife and he just said no then wandered off, a correct if unhelpful reply. I had to cut it out using my house key as the only knife I had was still wrapped up with the bike! In this photo the guy is leaving on his forklift. The weather was great all day apart from 15 minutes of serious rain in the afternoon, 18-25c otherwise. Riding through Sweden just over the border I met a cool guy on a 1975 Norton commando he'd restored himself. Utterly lovely bike that had me idly searching to see how much one would cost that evening. I had stopped to take a picture when he pulled into the same layby and I asked him about the bike. We ended up having lunch together an hour and a half later due to the lack of restaraunts in this part of Sweden. I'd eventually found somewhere to have lunch and he arrived about 10 minutes after me! He asked me what I do and explained my job on the rigs in the north sea, he said that he was on the barge next to the Alexander keilland when it turned turtle, after 6 more months he quit and never went back. Seeing them recover the bodies from the sea played on his mind too much. I think motorbikes are one of few hobbies that would allow two complete strangers to share a meal then continue on seperate journeys. Rode 375 miles stopping at 7 when I found a camp site. The scenery had been lots of trees, all day. Just lots and lots of trees. I camped for the first time in 22 years, I had decided during the day that I would like to camp to try out the gear and the tent. Dinner was some of my 'emergency' noodles so that I could try out the stove and feel a bit more like an adventurer (while sitting on a campsite with the shower block about 50 yards away). They were actually OK! Noodles and rum, what could possibly go wrong... It took a while to get comfortable in the tent and as it was pretty cold I got right into my warm sleeping bag and zipped it all the way up just leaving a little hole at my face. I woke up an hour later so hot I could barely breathe! One thing about it being light all the time, the birds never shut up.
This was about as dark as it got all night, and this was pretty far south in the general scheme of things!