“Of course, caro, no worries!” / 4
I have one appointment for upcoming two months, just one. At 1200 km from Belgium. Italian friends for over thirty years, Sandro and Armando, throw a big wedding party in the Italian city Brescia after having been together for 28 years. I MUST and WILL make it.
This is actually the second party; the first and legal one had been in Iceland a month before. In Italy, same sex couples still can not get married and it looks like it will still take time before this changes. Conservative and catholic influences stubbornly hold on to the so called ‘family values’.
But… I'm on a vehicle I hardly know. For the first time in Europe, a 100% electric production motorcycle will set about a long journey, with me in the saddle, and —due to a late delivery— there was no time to test that borrowed device. I had 6 days and not a single one to spare. On paper, I could ride 200 to 250km on one charge, but what would it be in reality?
I had laughed at their worries of not arriving in time. They check my whereabouts every day, feeling ill at ease that I wasn’t simply flying in. “Of course I will make it, cari!” Yet a tiny voice whines: “And what if I fail?”.
REWIND, TO THE BREAKDOWN
So it's official, I have a break down. On the second day. The little voice, nagging ‘what if?’ in the back of my head since departure, breaks into a guffaw. I HAVE to be in time in Italy. But how?!
Again I find an sms by Sandro: “You will be in time, right? When exactly do you arrive?” Again I text away his anxiety: “Of course, caro, no worries!” while the B-plans in my head appear and disappear. Train, airplane, hitchhike? And what about Xena, my electric Zero DS??
A decision is made: Patrick, the Zero distributor, will come with a new charger himself. It's a Sunday night, and a six hour's drive. As he arrives after midnight, the friendly bunch of campers cracks another bottle, serves him a fresh bit of roast and offers a bed in their caravan.
The next morning it's all hands on deck. Patrick #1 works, Patrick #2 hands over the tools, and I translate between them. Once the new charger connected, we plug Xena in and... she starts charging as if nothing happened. All around applaud.
I've never been so grateful, for Patrick the Belgian and Patrick the French. Before returning home, the Belgian adds with a broad grin: “I'm not driving to Istanbul, you know!”
And the cause of the matter? Unknown. The charger —under warranty— ended up at the factory and is currently being researched. Apparently it was not the first failing charger in the 2015 motorcycles.
On July 16th, one day before the Big Party, I text Sandro with a smile from ear to ear: “I'm entering the city NOW!”
[ NOTE: all images in my articles have captions, giving more details about the story. In the upper left corner you can click show/hide. Unfortunately setting the captions on 'show', then hides the top of the image. Oh well... ]