Friday, July 03, 2009

Le Coup de la Panne

Traffic in Paris is insane. It's always been and will always be. And in the summertime, with insane heat to deal with and no AC, it's simply crazy. So when my brother and i had to go visit relatives in the suburbs, we were like, hum, euh, weeeell ... Motivation on level zero.
That's when i thought about the evidence ... why don't we take your motorbike? Hell yeah, what a great idea!

So off we go, on the bike. Traffic is insane in Paris but second place regarding insanity is going to traffic lights! Jeez there is one every 100 meters. It's crazy! So even though taking a moto to get there WAS a good idea at first, after 3 minutes, i didn't think it was a good idea anylonger. My brother's bike doesn't have handles for the passengers so i had to hold myself against the gaz tank. Needless to say that after 5 minutes of braking, i couldn't feel my shoulders, nor my elbows, nor my wrists, let alone my fingers. So yeah, not so pleasant of a ride (20 minutes ride).

The second we headed back, there were already lines and lines of traffic, hundreds of cars back to back not really moving forward at all and it was so nice to be zig-zag-ing in between them all - ok i must admit i closed my eyes every single time my brother was doing that, i always had the feeling my knee would hit a side mirror - but it's really exciting to realized that, jeez, all those people stuck in traffic for hours and you just pass them all in no time!

Then 2 exits from arriving, right in the middle of the 2 lines and crazy traffic of the A86 (one of Paris's worst and busiest beltway), the moto stopped. Like stopped. Nothing. No ignition. Nothing. NO-THING.

WHAT do you do when you're stopped, on a bike, on a highway, in the middle of the bloody road? What the bloody hell do you DO?

Well apparently, it's nothing freaky for my lil'bro ... As cool as a cucumber, he took us to the shoulder lane like if it was the most natural thing to happen, got me off the bike and told me, half pissed off half laughing ... "we ran out of gaz".
What? WHAT? WHAAAAAAT? Out of gaz? Don't you have a gauge to tell you that? Didn't you know that it was going to happen? Fuck ... Average survival time on the shoulder lane of a french highway: 20 minutes. So get your helmet off, your jacket, your gloves and let's get our asses going, i'm really not too fond of the idea of getting ran over on holidays.

After 10 minutes pushing the bike, which let's admit it, it's easier and lighter than a car, and after realizing that all the advantage we got by slaloming between cars and trucks was down the drain, we started laughing and laughing and laughing (still on the highway) at this completely oh-so-stupid situation we got ourselves in!

10 liters of sweat later, finally made it to a gaz station, got ourselves a little gaz drum and headed back home ... 2 hours after we took off, instead of 20 minutes ... Yeah, well, not so much of a plus a motorbike in Paris !! End of it all, it took us longer than by car!

1 comment:

  1. Man, that is a hell of a story to tell you grand childs some day! I am picturing you and your bro walking on that highway (I been on it) and I have to be honest I am laughing my ass of. Keep up the great adventures Mathi!!!

    Love. Gustavo