Today my phone was still to scared to leave the room, although in fairness I do have to stand outside to get WiFi sometimes. That’s the luxury of being the furthest place from reception. Today I was going to have to work the tech. I started by calling Tesco mobile to discuss my phone. They sent new settings to help it overcome it’s problems. That didn’t work.
Choutos contacted me on Taptalk to say he would set up a WhatsApp group with his friends in Algeciras so we could work on getting the bike sorted. Shortly the group Rescate XR400 (Rescue XR400) started up. Choutos’s real name is Vitor. He has friends Paco and Ezequiel. All were keen to help. I soon had the phone number of a guy to repair it. Again he spoke no English but I had an email address. So write the email on message pad, cut and paste to Google translate. Cut and paste the translation to the email and send. Repeat the whole thing in reverse when the reply arrives. Meantime Paco suggests I buy his bike, a Honda VT 250. When it was sold in the UK they got a terrible reputation for engine failures. (Yeah coz i need more of that) Paco’s bike was much newer than any I had seen in UK but still had the same engine. He sent me pictures via a link to a ‘freeads’ type site. My phone even translated the ads for me. I soon learned how to change the settings and search bikes close to me. Meantime the chat group continued and the emails went back and forth. The mechanic was happy to do the work and estimated 5 to 7 days as Honda want 3 days to deliver the parts. He also said about £400 in labour costs. Not unrealistic, as no other option had come close to that. Whatever happens I have to buy the parts sometime, so that is money added to every solution. The only difference is, back home I can do it slowly as funds become available. Also at home I don’t have to buy genuine Honda parts. Anyway the wait was on for both Honda main service agent and MQ-Tech to come up with prices.
I needed food and a break from tech. I walked to the local pub and ordered chicken, egg, chips and fried chillies. Why wouldn’t you? It all tastes good washed down with ice cold beer in the sun. It was good to be away from the room and stress of the search.
Refreshed and back at the hotel, the phone felt safe enough to reconnect. I was having a ball looking at bikes and I found one. Not cheap but a fun little bike less than a year old. I called but the number did not connect. I went to reception and asked the kind lady to call. She did and after some discussion she told me the bike was 100km away. The seller was also concerned to sell to a non resident. Back on the web I found various bits of info on buying bikes in Spain. I went back to WhatsApp and the guys said there may be some issues. I may need a Solicitor to buy a bike as a non resident and that’s the same for cars. It’s gotta be English registered. Then I started getting ads for English cars from the WhatsApp gang, some like the Aston Martin DB9 were no good, I’d never get the bike in that! And the Range Rover wasn’t my colour, but the Rav4 and at a push The BMW saloon would do. The Beemer was cheaper but on speaking to the guy he couldn’t sell it until the end of October. The Rav4 was the one, I called, no answer. I sent a WhatsApp message and sat back to wait. Moments later the phone pinged. It was servico Honda saying he had requested prices from Honda. I’m no better off for that.
I emailed MQ-tech again and he replied with an estimate for the bits from Honda. It was about £1200, even then I noticed the crank case wasn’t on the list. It’s almost more economic to just walk away from the bike, but I quite like it and I can see back home it will be much cheaper to rebuild.
From then on it was just a case of waiting for the Rav4 guy to call. He didn’t.