in just a few hours. The audio-visual narrative is coming soon, and it’s quite a tale…
In the meantime, pique your curiosity by sampling this short video in which the cameraman laughs shrilly and diabolically as the Volkswagen Amarok wipes out in spectacular fashion while trying to cross a mud pit up in the Ngong Hills. That is just icing on the mud cake, a future highlight reel will provide the proof in the pudding…
I grew up with a fellow called Reuben that had a remarkable talent: Whenever we wanted to wake up in the wee hours of the morning, and did not have at hand, the legendary Casio Alarm Chrono watch, that we children of the 90s loved very much, all we needed to do was ask Reuben to wake us up at whatever time we desired.
In the seven years I stayed with Reuben, I made hundreds of requests to be woken up, each request was different – 4.30am, 4.13am, 5.56am, 3.20am and Reuben always obliged. He did not have any clock or watch at hand, he just listed to the radio for the time before going to bed and somehow, something in his anatomy kept the time. It’s like he had an inner watchman that was meticulous and punctual.
My inner watchman is not like Reuben’s. He is an unimpressive nervous fellow that worries himself too much and loses count. I ask him to wake me up at 5.30am and he wakes me with a violent jolt at 2am. I look at my watch and he suggests that perhaps there is something wrong with it because himself, he is certain it’s 5.30am if not later. He plants enough doubt in my mind, so I get out of bed and go to the sitting room to turn on the laptop to confirm the time. The bloody thing has about 139 updates to configure before turning itself on and revealing the time, so I wait. Finally, I learn that it’s 2.34am and the fellow (my inner watchman), is very sorry for his mistake. I return to bed bad tempered and it takes me another half hour to fall asleep again.
For the next two hours, the fellow wakes me up every 10 minutes and each time he is sure it’s 5.30am. I regret and wish I hadn’t mentioned the thing to him whatsoever! At 5am he goes to sleep himself, worn out by his efforts and I finally manage to catch some sleep. I open my eyes and see some light. My half awakened intelligence doesn’t tell me anything for a few moments and then it suddenly hits me with the knowledge that the meeting has started and that the bird singing like mad outside, is actually the phone beside me ringing. I scramble out of bed and charge about the room confused, eyes bulging and heart beating violently, it’s 9am.
I tell you this true story about my inner watchman because I do not trust the fellow and tomorrow, I plan on waking up very early to go to the train station to queue for a ticket. I plan to visit Mombasa next week to receive a shipment of bikes that I am very excited about. I mean to use this SGR train thing and I am told that to get a ticket, I need to be at the station very early in the morning and queue with about 5,000 other people. I wonder why the business can’t be done online, or can it? Someone, please tell me.
Anyway, the shipment I shall be receiving has the following bikes in it: The magnificent Bajaj Dominar 400. I believe this is the very first one to be registered in Kenya and I am fiercely proud. The very cool 2017 Bajaj Avenger 200 Street, also a first in Kenya I believe. A pair of very cute Honda Navi scooters, again a first in the country. A triple dose of the irresistible and muscular 2017 Yamaha FZ-25, of course also the first in the country. The very first 2017 Bajaj Pulsar 200NS in the country and finally the regal rogue itself, the 2017 KTM Duke 390, which will not be the first in the country because someone else beat me to it. Confound him!
All these claims to being first are unverified of course, it is simply my instinct that tells me so.
I don’t have a clever nugget of wisdom to conclude this article. Instead I invite you as the biker community in Kenya to come and check out these bikes when they land and to appreciate how far we’ve come as bikers in Kenya. When I bought my first bike on September 15th 2008, a 125cc symbol of humility and poverty, I had almost no choices, but now we live in a world where we can dare make our dreams of owning any bike come true. I shall communicate the date and venue for this celebration so please be on the look out on the various social media pages.
Also, these three bikes do not have owners, so tag a friend that might want one.
When the curtains came down on the recently concluded Nyaribo Time Trial competition, I was left with an empty track and three cars to play with. What to do? Quite obvious:
Organize a drag race.
It’s not the kind of drag you expect, it did have a tweak, the tweak being the drivers were OUTSIDE the cars. The cars ran by themselves for the most part. Here, have a garner:
The real idea behind this was, as track master for Time Trial Motorsports, I had to pick up my cones after the event with the help of the folks you see there. I quickly discovered that it was much faster to round up the little plastic markers if I let the car run slowly by itself as I jogged alongside collecting my assets, a maneuver called “ghost riding”. This is fairly easy to do in an automatic, snick the lever into Drive, down with the parking brake and hop out of the car. You just have to be careful when stepping in and out of the car as it’s moving lest you break your teeth.
(ALSO DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME, OR ANYWHERE ELSE FOR THAT MATTER. I WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE IF THINGS DON’T GO WELL FOR YOU AS THEY DID FOR ME)
After I was done with the cones, the others noticed what I was doing and hey presto! A driverless drag race was soon under way.
The observations here are interesting. The Mazda Demio DE (same green one we reviewed first week of 2017) is equipped with a CVT while the Toyota Corolla 110 sports a 5-speed manual gearbox. They both have 1500cc 4-cylinder petrol engines, but as you may observe (or hear my gruff voice proclaim), the Corolla is just a little bit faster than the Mazda.
If you have any solid explanation as to why (besides the fairly obvious gear ratio argument), please drop your words in the comments below.