And so to cheer myself up during the long cold winter months I splashed out on my credit card and bought a raft of goodies. I now have too much gear but I am in the enviable position of deciding what not to take instead of saying I wish I could afford that. Not to crow but just to re-iterate I have managed to collect in a period of just 18 months what some people take a lifetime to acquire. It helped that as I owned much of the stuff many years before; I had a damn good idea of what I wanted this time around. There have been many mistakes along the way and some items have just not been fit for purpose but as I did not know anyone with the same equipment and few shops sold the items I was looking for before I purchased then the internet was the only way to go. The biggest mistake was the satnav. Yes the infernal navigation aid that did not aid at all and seemed hell bent on getting me lost. Sue me Garmin I will happily see you in court!
So I took the plunge and have invested in a new one. Another Garmin but this time all singing all dancing and with expansion slots to take extra maps and information. It is also wide screen and should not present such a problem as trying to view it with my glasses on as the old satnav did. It has all the maps I should ever need including city navigators of all the major towns in Europe. It can also take phone calls and play MP3’s. So to make the most of this piece of electronic gadgetry and to realise its full potential I purchased some other goodies to go with it.
Now perhaps I am naive or I do not understand the instructions but I cannot get the Scala teamset to work as I thought it would. Again as I do not know anyone who has one of these and there do not appear to be any shops locally who sell this item I purchased off the net falling for the blurb that accompanied the product. The idea was to have a head set that would enable me and Bean Counter to communicate with each other instead of us both digging each other in the ribs to attract each other’s attention. Reading the blurb then if I have go this right, both of us should be able to listen to separate things for example she should be able to listen to the MP3 player I bought to accompany her headset. I should be able to listen to the MP3’s stored on the satnav while looking at the map and when we speak to each other both sets of MP3’s should be cancelled out until we stop speaking when they would come on again.
I do not know if the equipment is broke or it was never intended to do this. For now BC and me can speak to each other and not listen to music or we can listen to music to brighten up the boring motorways and not speak to each other. Both include tapping various buttons on the headset which I am not too happy about doing while riding the bike. Of course when I am on my own and have no pillion to communicate with then this will not be a problem. However for now it seems that yet again I have bought something that will not do the job for which I believed it would.
I also failed to realise that the headsets need charging from the mains and cannot be charged from the power supply on the bike. If I am camping then I will have no power to recharge the batteries and the headset will only last for seven hours before it needs more electricity. It will not be an entire waste but 600 quid for all the bits is a lot of money. Maybe I should have just bought the satnav as that does seem to work and a ride out camping in Yorkshire in just two weeks will either confirm that I was justified in spending so much on a single piece of equipment or whether I have been ripped off again. Bark Busters and crash bar panniers are now the only two items missing from my comprehensive list.