Kim and H went to great trouble and expense to have a local art instructor do a beautiful paint job on her trike, putting Lana's image on the tank, along with Kim and H's too.
The pictures here don't do it any justice here, the artist who did this is first rate! In person it looks almost three-dimensional, one of the best paint jobs Gary said he's ever seen!
Here's Kim on the other side of the tank, a very good likeness! We looked at the bikes for a while, and then it was back into the house for a couple more beers while we waited for a couple more friends to come over from the Isle of Sheppy for dinner, Paul, Trish and my stuffed buddy, Kermit.
Here they are at the end of their Route 66 tour in 2006, when they first met Gary. My friend Kermit was trying to keep these two under control for the whole tour, but to no avail! They were on an extended holiday around the world, and Route 66 was just one of the many along the way.
It wasn't long before they found us and we were off to dinner at a nice local restaurant. H and Kim didn't know Paul and Trish before this evening, but Gary was sure they would all get along famously, which they did! Plus having the shared experience of riding down Route 66 helped too.
Since it was around Christmas I decided to bring a present for my froggy-friend Kermit. When he went down Route 66 he didn't have any proper riding gear (he rode in the top-box of the bike mostly), so I decided to bring him a Leather biker Jacket and a full set of Route 66 Badges. I figured that since he made it all the way down the road with these two nutters he should be rewarded for getting them through it alive! After dinner it was back to H and Kim's for the night for a good sleep. The next day we spent going over good times on the tour and just generally talking about riding before it was time for us to head off to the train station. We said thanks and goodbye to our good friends and got on the train to make our way back North.
We went back through London and changed trains to our next stop, Northampton. We had several friends in the area too that we wanted to see.
We got off the train in Northampton, and were met by our buddy from another tour, Steve.
It was late when we got into town and then drove to Steve's favorite Indian restaurant for dinner. So after a curry and a beer (or three) it was time for bed!
The next day Steve and Gary slept in and then had a good time lounging about the house chatting about good times on the road, truck (lorry) driving (something both Gary and Steve have in common), girls and more until we got hungry and decided to find a nice pub to have lunch at. We drove around the lovely countryside going from Pub to Pub until we found a very nice one having an early Christmas roast dinner. After a good meal it was back to Steve's place for some more conversation, and to watch some videos of Adrian Edmondson and Rick Mayall in "Bottom Live", very funny stuff. After the videos it was about time to go to the pub to meet some more friends for a few pints and a few laughs. So it was back in the car and we drove to a local "Workingman's Pub" to meet Robert (Bob) and John. They had some very good beer at this place, and Gary was very impressed by the quality, something which we never get at home! I gave it a try and was so impressed I tried to start drinking it from the tap, but before I could, my jacket got caught on the handle and I got stuck!
They gave Gary a stern warning about me not getting any more silly ideas, and to keep me under control. It was a hard thing to do though, this bear doesn't get good beer very often so it was difficult to keep me (and Gary too…) away from it for long.
After a couple of hours of behaving myself the barkeep was true to his word and gave me a pint all to myself, no more sharing with my loony human. Gary was enjoying the beer a little too much, and was quite silly by this time! So I had to finish the pint all by myself, that's a lot of beer for this little Bear! We had a great time until closing time and then it was back to Steve's place to sleep off all that good beer!
The humans sat around a bit watching more silly videos and chatting before bed, which gave me a chance to sneak off to the kitchen to find something more to drink! That's when I discovered Strongbow cider in the fridge. I never had it until now, and now I'm hooked! Who knew that you could get something so good from fruit? So while the humans were distracted watching the tele I finished off a whole can by myself (b…u…r…p)! I really don't remember much after that, but I must have had a good time!
Both Gary and myself would like to say a big "THANK YOU" to everyone in jolly ol' England for a great time and their extremely generous hospitality…we really had a brilliant time!