I’m sure everyone is sick to death of the subject of Corona virus and lockdown by now, but for me a self-employed craftsman who used to work ridiculous hours, I found the enforced lockdown a turning point in my life. My stress levels disappeared and with a little subsidy from the government I was able to enjoy the break from work and constant earache from customers.
My garden got attention that it had been craving for years. The lawn got edged and I unearthed a pathway buried for decades. My Son, who is a supermarket worker, was considered a Key worker. As he had managed to wreck his own bike, our 18-year-old combo was pressed into service as his taxi to and from work each day. This was my new job during lockdown. Combo taxi driver, and I loved it. Most people in our town were unable to travel unless it was an essential journey. The roads in our town were virtually deserted apart from us lurching about on the old combo twice a day. We became quite well known as we trundled through the town each day. Families on their daily exercise walk would wave at us. I feel we should have had some balloons on the combo to enhance the experience from them all!
6 miles out of town I have a housebound Mother who lives close to my workshop. Normally I see her every day and am able to help her out with little domestic chores etc, but now I was no longer at work, so now I had to get the little Jawa ohc out and ride over each day on an essential journey. As the weather was gorgeous during lockdown this essential journey did take a little longer than usual as I decided to explore backroads of Norfolk that I had never been on before. I was out for hours!! I ended up doing more biking during lockdown than I ever do normally. Usually I spend my week schlepping about in a van collecting and delivering to my customers. For nearly 3 months my van sat in the front garden whilst I enjoyed myself buzzing about on my bikes in the sunshine.
Since the easing of government restrictions, I have decided that I will not be going back to full time work. Customers are now told that lead times will be far longer than they were before. I am not going to snow myself under anymore. We now have more time to get the combo out and go fishing. We have more day trips and , if my van is not required, I’m even visiting my restoration clients on my little strimmer motor Jawa ohc, which is a joy to ride since losing its Euro 4 lambda sensor and being fitted with a power commander that keeps the motor a smooth as silk. Wangling a little more biking into my work week has even made customers a little more bearable!
Another bonus of all this biking is the dramatic cut in my fuel bills. My van sucks down well over 200 notes worth of diesel each month. Not anymore. The little Jawa will trundle around the town using a mere 8 quids worth of petrol for every 100 miles of stop start journeys. Amazing.
I can’t wait for biking events to start again and I’m looking forward to more biking during my working week. Hopefully all readers of sidecarland have managed to come out of these extraordinary times unscathed. Bye for now.