Friday, 17 August 2012 Dong Hae, South Korea (0 miles) Total Trip Miles – 4723. 0 hours riding
Weather Temps in the mid 80’s with humid & cloudy conditions. Some light rain
Caught a taxi over to the DBS Ferry yard to uncrate & assemble the bike so it would be ready for the road once clearing customs in Vladivostok…also, it was my first opportunity to see the bike since shipping out of Anchorage last weekend.
When I arrived at the main gate at 10 am, the security police were not allowing me to proceed; however, I pulled my phone out with the contact name & phone number for the person responsible for freight provided by Wendy Choi in Seoul. Without a doubt, if I had not had the information, I would still be standing on the outside. Security talked with Louis Kang and he came over to the security office and cleared things up. Wendy Choi may be reached at AERO INTERNATIONAL, LTD at +82(0) 17-213-3961 or firstname.lastname@example.org
I was uncomfortable when the police requested my passport and kept it while I worked on the bike – Louis assured me it would be fine, although it’s one of the rules of travel – never give up your passport!
Louis and I headed our way over to the ferry offices where he told me there would be a fee associated with my trash & crate disposal…here we go! He left me alone for about 10 minutes and returned to take me to the bike…felt as if I was getting ready to haggle with a car salesman. We hopped into a van and drove to where the bike was sitting on the docks outside…it was covered with a tarp, a couple of pallets & some lumber – it obviously had been rained on quite a bit. For some crazy reason I visualized an enclosed structure – like maybe a warehouse.
Louis asked me how long it would take me and I said about 2 hours – he also said he was unable to provide any assistance or equipment to lift the bike to install the front wheel.
Oh well…nothing new to me – have quite a few hours working on bikes and other vehicles in back yards, parking lots…you name it.
Since there were two plastic pallets there, I decided to just unbolt the bike and roll it on its side & cushion with some used shrink wrap. By this time the hot humid weather was taking over and it started to rain – going back to my old search & rescue days, there were a couple of large parts bags that I cut out a hole for my head and arms…of course I did! I guess one of the guys felt a bit sorry for me and handed me a rain coat…just can’t make it up. To make things worse I did cut the palm of my left hand with my Kershaw combat folding knife – bled all over everything until I could finally got it stopped…the knife is razor sharp!
Got the bike back on the kick stand and added the handle bars, cables, windshield and the like…fired it up and took a quick spin – felt terrific to once again be back on the bike.
Louis drove out to where I was working to take me back to the offices to pay my freight & cabin charges for the Sunday cruise…also, $48 US covered my disposal fees – not a bad price since I was given the opportunity to work on the bike.
Can’t tell you how terrific it feels to know the bike is back together& ready to complete this around the world journey…when I see it again after clearing customs in Vladivostok, I can close the book on leg two of the ride!
In the end, Louis treated me very well accompanying me everywhere and calling a taxi to take me back downtown…his English was very good and he engaged in many different conversations…very few things I has to ask – he simply just offered up information.
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