a motorbike film for biker it’s seven am Old Southern woman speaking: – Hey !! where the hell is this guy going in the middle of Winter in this cold weather on this bike that looks like the one from “The Great Escape”? – I’m going to Millevaches Maam! – He’s loaded down like a mule the idiot! – You probably can’t see it but beneath my leather scarf I’m smiling , I’m having a blast! My two thumbs are frozen but my heart is warm You can’t see it but behind my goggles, it’s not rain that waters my eyes, it’s emotion, true happiness, , it’s joy Maam! You can’t see it but beneath my leather slacks, beneath my isothermal tights , you can’t see it beneath my underwear, I’m having a hard on Maam !! And that, , that is Millevaches! Winter gathering in Millevaches A lot of people around me and in general as well, don’t really understand what can possess someone to get on one’s bike in the middle of Winter when the weather is awful and ride hundreds, even thousands of kilometers, , and on top of that, as far as I am concerned , with an old 125 from ‘72! And they understand even less when I go camping in a field where temperatures will defintitely be negative at night and that I’m praying for snow to fall I tried to explain to some of them, to convince them, that it is so cool, I tell them that they must come and see for themselves as for other people I already know that it’s useless to explain, even if they are bikers, they’re not in the same way Among those who shared the same experience and thus will do it again, some compare what they felt to the same feeling a little boy has when he jumps in a puddle of mud Some compare it to the ascent of a high summit , but in my case I would say that the road trip is like the ascent of the Everest once I get to it, I just feel like riding in a BIG puddle of muuuud! The key
is to step out of your comfort zone It is the front door to a change of scenery, to the unknown, to the unexpected, to adventure And that, that is “les Millevaches” !! But for now, I have about 200 km to ride _”come on” I would have loved to ride them all during day time but as per usual, to stick up to Hercules rule, a small explosion in the exhaust pipe this Morning, A low engine power and a few failures at high speed let me believe that I will have to tinker « Poopsie » again on the side of the road Ten thousand times I had to tickle, fiddle , disassemble, tinker reassemble, try redisassemble, _”flat tire” rereassemble, retry, and even sometimes rereredisassemble to rerereassemble and rereretry and, in most cases, end up repairing it So by rule and by experience, I leave with everything… or almost : I bring along a few spark plugs, a start capacitor, a contact breaker, points but I also bring stuff to repair or even change the chain bulb kit, pods, screws, bolts, absolutely everything for everything ! _”no, it’s ok , I repaired it maam…thank’s a lot !” _” it’s ok, I restarted it sir ” _”what happened to the bike ?? ” _”it break down… poor Son” For me, breakdowns are just part of the trip _”I’m EL CHINO ” _”isn’t it SON ???” they are part of the unexpected that could definitely change a planned program but that also bring many surprises , good and bad very often nice encounters, countless acts of solidarity _”it’s -2°, it’s all frozen” _”but it’s awesome….awesome” _”really awesome !” _”and here’s my motorbike” _”The damned brake” or more simply put, pride personal satisfaction when, on my own with patience, perseverance, reflexion intuition, meticulousness and of course a little luck , I was able to repair it and hit the road again !
Never I had to call the car insurance or the crane and I hope I will never have to do it ! I will now close my comments on the advantages of breaking down I was not ahead of time, on the contrary… To arrive during daytime at the « plateau des Millevaches » will be for next time , the sun is putting his pyjamas on The 6 volts that fuel my headlight don’t give me much pleasure to ride at night therefore I go much slower , even though I can’t wait to get there and I just want to tickle the accelerator So in order to ease my recklessness, because the day no longer lights the scenery I get lost in my thoughts and I reminisce the discovery, the experience from last year Last year was the first one for me _”hello ! ” and I believe there can only be one, one first time _”good evening” It makes so much sense if you compare it to your very first time , the first time is always unique, , unforgettable, surprising, , puzzling, MAGICAL I didn’t really know where I was going to end up last year Evidently I didn’t know anyone there but it is not what scares me, on the contrary As soon as I got in, I felt good vibes, a good karma And as I was riding through in darkness : welcoming and rallying screams, camp fires everywhere, and around each of them, a bunch a people who invited me to be part of their group In fact, I met these guys at night as I was riding around the camp that’s when WE decided that I would pitch my tent there Ten minutes later I had the feeling I was hanging out with my childhood friends ! And that, that is “Les Millevaches” ! _”well, that it” _”thank you Jean pou” _”do you have sugar ? ” _”stop it , you put to much” _”i need glucose” _”do you want some coffe or hot wine ? _”i don’t like coffe !” _”what about hot wine ?” _” oh come ooooone” _”just to keep your hands warm” _”give your hot wine !” (drunk song) _”is there any chocolate left?” _”well guys !! I’m so happy to be here” _”who can give me the cookies ?” _”did you enjoyed it kids ?” over here, there is no category no contest, no prize, , no award, no business no burn, no stunt, and most importantly, no showing off ! And I think it is what makes Millevaches such a unique gathering, such a rare experience so simple and yet so special ! _”that’s – so – cool” _”total bursts” _”cold” _”unforgettable” _”white” _” I’ll be back” _”to redo” _”You have to be crazy” _”come on Son, three word for les millevaches ” _”magical” _”friendly” _”and unforgettable” _” and all the same for me” I was more than seduced by this discovery last year
and as for this year, with the buddies from Millevaches, we’ve been preparing, getting equipped, advising, kidding, insulting each other for months ; to make a long story short, we’re just impatient ! And this time, Poopsie’s caprice made me change my itinerary (and I believe the itinerary she chose was best) I finally got there at night time I arrived soaking wet but I finally arrived as usual , and what an arrival ! _”where do I park ?” _”aaahh, the lovely smell of two stroke’s” _”the chinese suffered on the road..!” _”you maybe suffered on the road, but get down on your bike you’llsee what suffering is [……………………….] [biiiiiiiiiippppp………………..biiiiiipppp] Over there, the rules are simple You can come like you want, however you can as far as you come on two or three motorized wheels It is fucking freezing, we’re all camping, _”that it, he get you to the pub !” _”HERCULES, _”exactly, exactly..” _”see you later…to the pub” so either you stay in your tent and you wrap yourself up in your sleeping bag trying to stay alive , or you stay outside by the fire or the drinking trough (the pub) and you chat you interact you share you give, and you get you admire , you kid around, you joke, you laugh , you relate, you listen you get again so you give again you help and you get help, you give favors and you get favors in return and in fact, in reality, you win, whatever happens, you win ! _” well, it’s raining ! ” Over there the biker spirit is religion , in a pure way with a family that counts thousands of members the time of a weekend You don’t feel like leaving _”you snore less at night” you wish it would last longer _”you already gone ?” _”we steel have one to keep the fire alive..” _” did you sleep well ?” _”yep, like a baby” _”when you drink as a pirate,you sleep as a baby” _”Mathias” _”your pusy” _”Mathias _”are you sleeping Mathias ?” so I stayed there while everybody was leaving
I didn’t want to be on the road a day where heavy rain was forcast whereas the weather was going to clear up the following day I can afford to stay longer, reminiscing the departure day from last year which was the worst souvenir of all of my trips _”It’s 11 o’clock!” _”I’m packing from one and a half hour in the tent” _”it’s raining a lot” _”the hardest will be to pack the tent” _”and harness all on the bike” _”stell have all that stuf to keep” _”that is Les Millevaches” _” 12h20, I’m nearly ready for the inside” _”just have to pack the tent” _”it’s the flood.. THE FLOOD After the negative temperatures of the preceding days came a heavy rain at dawn that changed the snow into mud and strong gusts of wind that took many tents away _”it was my firt one..and not the last one..!!” A seven-hour ordeal followed, heavy and ongoing rain , no visibility despite the goggles even less visibility at nightfall and for the first time I felt not only carelessness but apprehension! No, never again ! So my decision is made I’m staying ! And staying will also enable me to contribute in other ways I was going to make myself useful by participating at the garbage collection and the cleaning of the field and its surroundings help others be on their way Although people have pretty much respected the venue, , there’s always a piece of rope, a tent peg, caps or beer cans a piece of broken glass , a lost glove, a fallen scarf to be picked up So to sum it up, « Poopsie » and I are going to play pick up garbages ! Some people, seeing us at work, leave their personal bundling for a moment to screen their zone once again What a Strange feeling ! The hyper efficient teams of volunteers have finished going through the field in just 3 hours and so, yes, it was a funny feeling to end up staying alone in this place which had become as large as empty No more magic then, no more interactions, no more jokes, no more sharing My only neighbors are now the crows that fight over the leftovers of a « cassoulet » thrown up by a reckless guy the night before Only the fire keeps me company now, it keeps me warm, it makes me have deep thoughts, and more wine and plum liquor than I have ever had in a year My buddies are gone… they’ve left everything… The night is falling, they must have all arrived home , it keeps raining louder…
I’m packing as soon as the day breaks and I’m taking off in the morning It’s not over for me I still have at least a two-day ride to get to my mountains but I always feel a little bitter about going back… Fortunately there will be a little compensation on the way : I’m going to find that cool spot on the shores of «Viaur» , South of Rodez a great place I found after riding around for an hour in the trails and forest tracks nearby This little nook is not only remote, discreet, pretty accessible, and perfectly-suited for camping (there’s water, wood, a flat field), it is also authorized to stay there I think I wish I could spend a week there, it is the perfect place where to crash after the Millevaches and get ready to deal with the harsh reality again That being said, I can’t help thinking about my next trip the one that will take me far away, very far away , for a long time, a very long time Because I must admit something : Nothing would please me more than discover new trails, new lands, new countries, new destinations, new challenges and new excuses to leave on my own again, on the seat of my capricious but faithful Hercules K 125 from ’72 ! You and I Poopsie will go and see the world, ‘til the end !