We are Steve (1963 vintage) and Janette Douglas (1966 vintage). We are originally from Southampton in Hampshire, UK but had lived in Goring on Thames in South Oxfordshire, UK for the ten years prior to this trip.
Before quitting our jobs to do this trip, Steve had worked for Microsoft for 18 years and Janette for AXA for 30 years – she had her leaving do on her 30th anniversary of joining.
We have been married since 1995, so should know each other well enough by now to spend 24 hours a day together.
Steve has had motorbikes since he was 16 and needed transport to his work as an apprentice. That first bike was a burgundy coloured Yamaha FS1E followed over the years by a succession of Hondas, Suzukis, Yamahas and BMWs and now his first Triumph. The only one he really regrets selling is his Honda RC30.
Prior to meeting Steve, Janette had only ever been pillion on a motorcycle once in her life. However, after a gentle introduction to motorcycling and a subsequent trip to the French Alps on a Honda VFR750 Janette is right at home riding pillion with Steve. Curiosity did mean that Janette took some basic motorcycle training. Being told that you had to put your feet down to stop yourself falling over wasn’t a great start and she is pretty sure that she only passed the course after telling the instructor she would not be getting a bike of her own.
Prior to this trip, we have had many holidays in Europe – France, Italy, Spain, Czech Republic, Poland – many of which included going to MotoGPs. We had two longer trips (5 weeks) both to Morocco which we absolutely loved. In 2009 we had a BMW K1200 GT, which was too big to take off road. We returned in 2012 on our current bike a Triumph Tiger 800 XC which we took off road for the first time – which was a bit scary at first. In both trips, we did big circuits of the country seeing deserts, mountains and oceans and experiencing a completely different culture to that of Europe. The fact that neither of us wanted to return home at the end inspired us to keep saving/planning for the big ‘round the world trip’ we have now started.