As I boarded the bus I tried to convince myself that I would be alright whatever the outcome, if she was gone, I did not have a lot of money invested and, I reasoned, Annabelle was probably just a wolf in sheep's clothing. Plus if she was still there I would have the task of navigating through the Korean countryside for the next 3 hours. On the plus side, if she was still there it would be quite the adventure getting her home and then spending time with her for the rest of the year. It was a toss up.
But as the bus neared the subway I began to feel more and more strongly about the situation, hoping that she would still be waiting for me. The feeling grew with each stop on the subway. My heart started to race, my breath became shorter and shorter and my palms lubricated themselves with a cold sweat. When I got to the right stop on the subway I collected myself, hoping for the best but preparing for the worst. I reminded myself that whatever Annabelle had decided, it would be alright with me.
I some how mustered up the strength to climb the three flights of stairs to get from the subway to the sidewalk and made my way towards our meeting place, 2 blocks away. As I neared I noticed a truck and a car on the sidewalk parked right about where Annabelle said she would be, my heart fell. Did she stand me up? I made my way around the truck and there she was in all her beauty, just like she said she would be. I should have never doubted.
This was my starting point. When I looked at my location on a map I could not have stopped been at a better place. I was parked right on the number 7 which I would follow till it turned in to the number 2. Then I would follow the number 2 until the turn off for the number 14. Then number 14 would take me all the way to Geoje.
This was the coolest man made thing I saw on my ride, it was a typical American 2 story house build on the top of a 10 story building. (I guess the tunnels were pretty cool too)
As I was driving I did not have a good sense of how far I had gone and so I ended up stopping only a few times. This was the first time, coming in to a large valley.
This is what the scenery of most of the trip looked like, small mountains, up and down. When I merged back on to the highway here I nearly got run over by a car going through some yellow no drive lines.
The next time I stopped was when I accidentally turned on to an express way that had a no motorcycle sign after I could no longer turn off. So I looked at my map really hard hoping some one would stop and help me but when no one did I continued on along that road until there was a turn around. I was possibly the first motorcycle to drive that road.
During my trip I found out my favorite thing ever in Korea is no longer leaving school at the end of the day, it is now driving through tunnels with Annabelle. There is something about it I just can't explain, but I can encourage you, so I will. Go out and try it!
The roads in Korea are top notch, and they are constantly building them bigger and better.
Overall the ride was pretty uneventful, it was quite chilly so once I got out of Busan I stopped to put on my long-johns, scarf and winter gloves. This helped but did not stop the shivers.
In one of the cities that I passed through I was stopped at some lights and this black car pulls up beside me with the window down. Inside is a guy in a suit trying to tell me something. It's Korea so I don't understand but he is pointing to the back of my motorcycle and talking. I assumed that he was saying that I don't have a licence place or registration(I don't even have any papers for that matter). At first I just tried to ignore him in the hopes that the light would turn green and I would blaze away... but the light stayed red and he was persistent. So finally I took a look behind me and found out that the rope that was attached to my rack in the back had come loose and one end was dragging on the ground. I thanked him and hopped off to tie it up more securely.
The road(except for the minor detour) was pretty easy to follow, so I made good time and before I knew it I was seeing signs for Geoje. Then about 30 km from Geoje disaster struck*... I was coming to a light and I pushed my foot brake and got nothing but air. Thankfully I was in a city and so I was driving at lower speeds and I still had a front brake so I piloted my Annabelle in to a parking lot for inspection. It turns out that a bolt had sheered off at a pivot point for the rear brake and so the pedal was dragging on the ground. (*It turned out not to be that big a deal but disaster has a dramatic ring to it.)
Because I was so close to home I just propped the arm back in place using some rope that I had along and then for braking I just used down shifting and the front brake. (In the bottom left corner on the brake arm you can see the hole where there used to be a bold)
I made it home safe and sound arriving just a little more than 3 hours after I left Busan. When Annabelle is parked in her spot I can see her from my room.
This is hopefully just the beginning of the adventures that I will have with Annabelle but now it is time for a well deserved rest and a trip to the mechanic to see if we can mend her.