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Thread: In Conversation With a World Tourer: PETER SEVER

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    Rusted ken cool's Avatar
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    Default In Conversation With a World Tourer: PETER SEVER


    Peter Sever

    “I started from London on the 14th of July 2008 and have been riding since”. When I heard those words I nearly fell off my chair. It has been nearly a year that this gentleman and his charming wife have been sitting on a motorcycle and riding across states, nations and continents. I was sitting engrossed talking with Peter Sever, this extraordinary gentleman from Canada and every moment spent with him made me see a new picture of some unheard of corner on this planet as he recounted his innumerable adventures that he has encountered as he crisscrossed continents over the past 10 months!

    Peter Sever is travelling with his companion Thao Nguyen. They are from as diverse cultures as they come. Peter was born just after the war in 1946 in Prague in the erstwhile Czechoslovakia and his parents moved to Canada soon after. Thao Nguyen was born in South Vietnam and moved to Canada when she was still very young. The versatility of both personalities makes you sit up take notice. Peter is an MBA, with incredible entrepreneurial skills, who has built Companies and sold them, has built Yachts and sold them, has taught French professionally in Ghana (W. Africa), travelled, ridden, driven extensively on 4 continents and is still looking for more. He has survived a severe crash with his older Honda 750 with an animal, several months in hospital, he has a bad leg and an artificial shoulder! That was 30 years ago. Peter is still riding and having fun. “You know what... I am a lucky man”, he says with a vibrant twinkle in his eye!


    The Lucky Man

    Thao did her studies from La Sorbonne, Paris. Has lived, studied and worked in France for two years. She has a B. Ed from York Universtity, Ontario, licensed blackjack dealer in Casinos, but no driver’s license as yet! She teaches French and has also taught in Kenya as a volunteer. She does not seek luxuries and comes out as an easy going with minimal fuss and a very down to earth person. Meticulously she has been maintaining a detailed log of all that they have done in the past 10 months during their ride and their various adventures and will continue to do so in the future even as I write this. But the time I finish writing this, she is probably updating their adventures in some parts of India!


    Peter with his companion Thao

    What does Peter ride; he rides a 2006 GL1800i Honda Goldwing! "We flew in to London with the bike from Toronto over the Atlantic and started riding and have been riding since the 14th of July 2008", Peter told me! I sat transfixed as Peter kept talking to me. They went through North England, Loch Ness in Scotland, then under the Chunnel to France, across to the Black Forest in Germany, Switzerland, through the amazing Stelvio Pass in Italy, Austria, Slovakia, to his country of roots, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey, apparently troubled Syria, visited Petra in Jordan, Israel, back to Italy, crossed the Mediterranean to north Africa through Tunisia, Libya and Egypt, back to Turkey, through Iran and Pakistan and then into India entering through the Wagah border, Amritsar and then to New Delhi. 40,000 kilometres on the clock and still counting!


    The Big Canadian

    His stopover in Delhi included a full service of his motorcycle, change of tyres, Metzeler, he is very happy with this brand, and his trials and tribulations with the Myanmar embassy and various other embassies for getting permits to cross the countries. His initial plans were to cross North Eastern India and ride into Myanmar in the direction of Vietnam. Thao in search of roots… perhaps! But after their persistent efforts went in vain when the Myanmar embassy refused to grant them a visa to enter the country with a personal vehicle, he gave up the idea. But he remained flexible and changed his plans. If Myanmar closes its doors, he now wants to land straight in Bangkok and continue from thereon. “We have a very loose plan of where we want to go. But we really do not know where we are going.” Keep it open is his philosophy. They wanted to ride through Myanmar. Now they can’t. “We will have to fly out with the motorcycle.”


    He is endowed with strong optimism and determination!

    The biggest problem that they face most of the time riding in third world countries is the way the bike attracts attention. Every time they stop for gas or to check the air pressure, they get surrounded by people. Peter and Thao are not troubled by that. But they do have a problem parking their huge Goldwing when they want to visit some place or have a meal at a restaurant. “I do not like people coming and touching my motorcycle. That puts me off! That is one moment I feel that had it been a car; I could have just locked the car and left. But a motorcycle is open.” But despite these issues, Peter remains a true biker. “Doing what I am doing with a motorcycle gives a pleasure that you cannot compare.” And he adds on to say, “And I also feel that riding a Goldwing is a compromise on motorcycling! It makes riding much easier with all the related comforts. But then I am an old man. I am 63 years old. I am a ‘Wheezy Rider’.”


    Peter with his Ride

    Peter is a determined man though he remains flexible. But crossing Pakistan and India he is beginning to feel the heat. “35 is fine by me. But 45 is not”! He points to the water cup holder on his bike and says, “In hot countries, this is a biker’s best friend” as he fills it up to the brim with water. "Riding here, I am getting baked to say the least. We are not used to this heat. As I ride along, I keep sipping from here!"


    A Rider's best friend in the heat!

    He got his bike in order and serviced by the famed KRP. "Vijay is an amazing man. He can do anything to a motorcycle. He has got a workshop that can make transformations to a motorcycle" says Peter with genuine admiration for the way KRP handled his work.

    The administrative affairs done, Peter and Thao are preparing their sojourn in India riding through Rajasthan. They have heard about the forts and palaces of Maharajas when they came to India. They have booked a few places in Rajasthan and now are on their way to discover the land of Kings and feudal lords. “I do not know where we really headed. I do not know where we will get eventually. And we do not know what we are going to do once we have finished the ride. But for the moment we are on our motorcycle. And we are riding on!” exudes Peter with the energy of an adventurer on the road as Thao smiles warmly.


    Getting ready to hit the road

    As I saw and waved them off on the Highway to Rajasthan, I realized that these people are nearly 20,000 kilometres away from home, in a climate that is utterly unsuited to their bodies, mingling and blending with cultures that are far removed from their own upbringing, getting into multilingual cultures, eating varied cuisines, but they have an openness of mind, a largeness of the heart and they are sitting on a motorcycle wearing a bright smile of contentment on their faces riding further on to places that most of us would never set foot on! Motorcycling has many aspects. This is another one of them. Hats off to these two extraordinary travellers! I wish them the best.


    Ready to Roll!


    From Ontario, Canada...


    ... to the streets in New Delhi, India!


    Long way...!


    Attraction at a filling station






    Au revoir! Until next time...

    Text: Krishnendu Kes aka Ken.
    Photos: Krishnendu Kes, Ms Moon Das
    Last edited by ken cool; 06-15-2009 at 06:06 PM.
    The Wheel was a great invention; Two Wheels with a Motor in between was even better!


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    MotoGrapher Sunny's Avatar
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    Excellent!

    Thank you Ken for introducing this man to us! At 63 riding around the world on a Goldwing! And braving the Rajasthan summer which obviously you forgot to warn him about .

    Hope to meet him sometime soon if you allow!
    Join xBhp On


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    Great stuff! Thanks for sharing this. Bandhav did manage to click a picture or two of this gentleman and the Goldwing, when they seemingly passed by the CP Probiking showroom!

    EDIT:

    It would be nice to know how did you actually managed to get hold of this gentleman, and interview him.
    Last edited by Aryan; 05-29-2009 at 06:13 PM.
    ...in search of that perfect world - My Travel Blog :)

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    Awesome , Thanks Ken !
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]The Moto Cafe - India's first bike theme cafe @ Chandni Chowk

    The Moto Cafe video -
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6XztkK4ej2U

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    Awsome stuff . It is indeed an act of praise and pride !
    After I turn 60 ,even I would want to do such a trip (preferebly on a Gixxer).
    No Nonsense Biker.

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    Rusted ken cool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunny View Post
    Excellent!

    Thank you Ken for introducing this man to us! At 63 riding around the world on a Goldwing! And braving the Rajasthan summer which obviously you forgot to warn him about .

    Hope to meet him sometime soon if you allow!
    Thanks Sunny. In a few days' time, he will be on his way back to Delhi. If he buzzes me and if he has the time, maybe we can set up a meeting...

    Quote Originally Posted by Aryan View Post
    Great stuff! Thanks for sharing this. Bandhav did manage to click a picture or two of this gentleman and the Goldwing, when they seemingly passed by the CP Probiking showroom!
    Yes, they were living in Connaught Place.


    Quote Originally Posted by Aryan View Post
    It would be nice to know how did you actually managed to get hold of this gentleman, and interview him.
    That is a long story.

    Quote Originally Posted by niks_devil666 View Post
    Awesome , Thanks Ken !
    My pleasure.

    Quote Originally Posted by augusta View Post
    Awsome stuff . It is indeed an act of praise and pride !
    After I turn 60 ,even I would want to do such a trip (preferebly on a Gixxer).
    When you get to 60, hopefully before, you will realise that things like the Gixxer and other 'R' bikes are toys for a small period of time. One evolves to other kinds of motorcycling and motorcycles.
    The Wheel was a great invention; Two Wheels with a Motor in between was even better!


    BMW Motorrad Days 2011

    Xbhp's Indo-French Kashmir-Ladakh Tour

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    What a man !! i am out of words me at that age i could only think of playing with my grand children

    I think PKM is inspired by such persons

    Ken da thanks for introducing him to us..
    "Engine tuning is not an exact science, but with some practice and patience you'll get comfortable with your skill and be able tune for any conditions mother nature throws at you"


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    Default Wheezy Rider & Thao - wheezyrider.com

    More fantasy bikes, tours, & day dreaming for me. Thanks Kenda for sharing.
    Mr. Peter Sever's Blog: Wheezy Rider & Thao
    Must read: WHO WE ARE
    Last edited by TomSawyer; 05-30-2009 at 08:05 AM. Reason: Must read: WHO WE ARE
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    Quote Originally Posted by psycho 98 View Post
    What a man !! i am out of words me at that age i could only think of playing with my grand children

    I think PKM is inspired by such persons

    Ken da thanks for introducing him to us..
    Yes, they must be. PKM and this guy looked like they had similar attitudes and desires. This is a very special kind of motorcycling that requires a lot of gumption and a very strong urge. Money helps, but money has got nothing to do with it. Peter could have easily sat at home and enjoyed his retirement benefits.

    Quote Originally Posted by TomSawyer View Post
    More fantasy bikes, tours, & day dreaming for me. Thanks Kenda for sharing.
    Mr. Peter Sever's Blog: Wheezy Rider & Thao
    Must read: WHO WE ARE
    Get out of Daydreaming mode and get into the Touring mode. There is this little green button that you have to press in your head.

    Thanks for the links.
    The Wheel was a great invention; Two Wheels with a Motor in between was even better!


    BMW Motorrad Days 2011

    Xbhp's Indo-French Kashmir-Ladakh Tour

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    hello sir any kind of help require in RAJASTHAN !!!!! just PM me
    life starts at 0 bhp and ends with xbhp

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