A Motorcycle Odyssey: Morocco

Birmingham to Plymouth

Day 2

Who Has Seen the Wind?

 Who has seen the wind?

Neither I nor you:

But when the leaves hang trembling,

The wind is passing through.


Who has seen the wind?

Neither you nor I:

But when the trees bow down their heads,

The wind is passing by.

Christina Rossetti  (1830-1894)


It was not just the leaves that were trembling when we left Birmingham.  Although we could not see the wind we could hear it’s frightful moan.  As for our heads, they were bowed as low as we could safely manage.  I felt sorry for the Chief Biker who still had to navigate us through the dense traffic and foul weather.

The icy blasts continued,  flinging small shards of ice against our helmets.  As we rode cautiously down the M5 towards the south west, the lowering clouds threatened hail stones.  Slowly, but inexorably, we continued our journey, every so often being pelted with sudden showers.  Exiting the M5 at Exeter the heavens opened and a cascade of hail rained down until it exhausted it’s entire load.  We stopped the bike under a bridge on the road while we waited for the storm to pass.

“Where are you St. Columbanus, patron saint of bikers?  We need you NOW.”

The saint remained silent.

What more could we do? We had to continue onwards into Devon.  The miles along the A38 seemed endless. The bike fought the elements until her valiant efforts were rewarded.   We reached our target destination,  my sister’s home in Paignton, where we were to stay the night.  Sadly, we had not been able to take photos of this journey because the weather had been too appalling.

Naomi Flashman

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