At last I no longer have to rely on public transport to get around, no longer do I have to mingle with poor people, listen to some bint have a loud conversation on her mobile about the fabulous dinner parties she goes to and how incredibly popular she is; "I just can’t decide which one to go to"….I’m finally mobile! It’s got two less wheels than I’d like but frankly owning a car when you live so close to the city would be stupid and expensive, so a scooter it is then.

His name is Monty, he’s 10 days old and he’s ‘Pale Mint Silver’, formally he’s known as a Vmoto Montego 125cc. Now you can’t just go buy a scooter over here, they’ve got a similar thing in place like the UK where you now have to be separately licenced to ride a motorbike/scooter. In the olden days when I was young(er) you didn’t need all that palaver so I happily rode a hand-me-down scooter when I was 16/17 but never actually got a proper licence when all the laws changed.

Step one was to get a NSW Drivers Licence, you can’t hold licences from more than one country so to get the bike licence I had to get ride of the UK licence, well not get rid of coz if I go back to the UK I’ve still got it. Next step was to arrange to go on the ‘Pre-Learner’ which is a two day 4 hour course to teach you the basics of using a bike. The slight hurdle here was actually getting on it, bike/scooter use is going bonkers in Sydney coz the traffics a nightmare and the public transport is crap. So there was a roughly 3 month waiting list, think I phoned in September to get a Jan booking! This I took on a manual, first time I’d every ridden a manual bike and I didn’t fall off, crash or anything…..I did, however, stall a few times. Once you’ve passed the two dayer you have to take a ‘Driver Knowledge Test’ which is just a multiple choice test taken at the local RTA (NSW equivalent of the DVLA) office.

So on the weekend of the 5th and 6th Jan I took the Pre-Leaner, passing with honours…..well actually there’s no honours but there should be. On the 8th I took the DKT….again gliding through it easily, and that was it, licence done and dusted. Of course it’s not quite that simple…..after 3 months but before 6 I have to do the ‘Pre-Provisional’ training and take the ‘Motorcycle Operator Skills Test’. If you’re under 30 you go on to a provisional licence but because I’m over 30, experienced and wise I go straight on to a full licence….yay!

I shall be ensuring that Monty doesn’t turn me into a lazy fat bastard though, I’ll still be walking to work when it’s not too hot, the main aim will be to use it to get to places where I’d normally use a bus and to explore the bits of Sydney which are just too hard to get to if you don’t have your own wheels.

Right I’m off to go see if they local Hell’s Angels will let me join up…..laters!

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