Sunday, September 13, 2015

Sherri Jo Loves her Tigers!

Part-time Surrogate Tiger Mum to Herman, Sumara and Joey at the Exotic Feline Rescue Center, Indiana

Welcome to the new blog!  It's been nearly 2 years since I was last blogging away.  Since completing my goal to ride a motorcycle around the world in 2013, I've been busy busy busy, working away at rebuilding my home life and replenishing the bank account the best I can!  Quite simply,  I've just been happy to be home, in my own bed, in my own kitchen, in my own yard!  I love where I live.  I'm lucky to live so close to the ocean, fresh air, and some of the most beautiful beaches in the world! There is great pleasure in these things as well!

So I have been wondering..... how can I balance my home life with my adventure life.  I've thought a lot about it, and the answer is to simply explore my own country in smaller doses.  A very large country at that!  This way I can satisfy the craving by being out there in the wild world, camping in strange places, exploring interesting corners of this vast land. Well not really corners, we are just one big island after all.  And when I feel the need, I can just pop back home and enjoy my home life again!  Sounds perfect!

Most of you would know that I spent 3 1/2 years riding a KTM 690 Enduro R around the world.  Forty-nine countries to be exact. It was a feisty bike!  I chose it because it was light weight and my biggest concern was to be able to pick up the bike on my own if I fell over.  Yet, it had the power to handle large highways for distance days.  The choice was right, it was the perfect bike for what I used it for.. light weight world travel! All around, it helped me manage the rough countries and seriously rough roads with a powerful lightweight machine.


During my time off I have been pondering.. a lot... which bike I would chose when I'm ready.  The KTM is dead (well in permanent retirement would be a kinder way to say this).  Half of me would say I'd get the same bike again.  It served me well, I know it well, why would I consider anything else.  The other half of me never gets the same thing twice.  I've never owned the same car twice, I don't even buy the same shampoo two times in a row. (I will go back to a same shampoo later if I truly liked it.. ;-) But I have a sincere need for variety in my life and I think I'd regret it if I didn't try something different.

In a perfect world, I know I have said it 100 times, I would like a shed with at LEAST five different bikes.   I have 5 different pairs of sunglasses, I have far more than 5 different pairs of shoes, easily 5 different colors of nailpolish.. so 5 different bikes, right?  That is my dream life.  Haven't made it to 5 yet.. but I finally have #2!

Riding a single cylinder bike was fine for the most part, but I always wished I had a bit more power, and a bit more comfort during the long days on boring roads.  So I knew I wanted to go larger, not smaller.  If I stuck with the same brand, KTM.. where does that put me?  The next size from the 690 is an 1190 (previously 990)..  1190!!!!  That is a super-size bike!  I looked at them, sat on them, seriously considered them.. No way.  I have to be reasonable, and there is no logical reason why I should have a bike this size.  I think it would be fun for the odd play-time but not for permanent time.

KTM 1190 Adventure R
I'm not a superstar on a motorcycle.. I'm an average rider at best.  Of course, if I stuck to easy-only roads, the 1190 would be a consideration.  But I'm not a fan of limitation.. I absolutely LOVE my freedom, this is most important to me.  Any time I was on or near an 1190, I saw it as a horse.  So big, so tall, so heavy.. not going to be easy to manage that one on "closed" or goat tracks we tend to take on real adventures.

Then I was given an opportunity to try the Triumph Tiger 800 XC while at the Touratech Australia Travel Event near Bright, Victoria.  I looked at the Tiger and thought... no.  It looks big and heavy as well, I was afraid to try it and made them promise not to get mad at me if I dumped it.

Well, lord have freakin' mercy..!!  My trial was like, "Whoa!!!!" I remember saying after my ride that it was like riding on air!  We did fairly easy tracks, but they were gravel, downed tree limbs, etc.  And I hardly felt a thing!  How can this be?!!  (On my 690, I felt everything including the white or yellow lines on the road).  I really didn't think I would like this bike but I instantaneously fell in love with it.  Now I'm in trouble...

Now this bike makes sense to me.  It is easy to manage in the rough stuff, mud, sand, gravel, etc.  Yet it is a wonderfully comfortable bike on the long paved roads.. Sooooooo comfortable.  I have to have one.

I've always been a believer of what you think, you create.  I thought about this Tiger often, I showed everyone I knew the photos.. I made the photo into my screen saver on the computer.  It didn't take long and.... voila!  I thought about it so much, it created itself.

I received a phone call one day that said, "Sherri Jo, Have I got the deal for you"...


So I am now the very proud owner of a Triumph Tiger 800 XC..  To say that I am in love is an understatement.

More about the new bike in the next post..

SUPERSIZE THANK YOU to Robin at Touratech Australia, Safari Tanks and Mark at Triumph Australia...!!!!!


  1. Looking forward to your new adventures in this blog.....all the best


  2. wow, a perfect fit for you.. i Hope my new CRF1000 next spring fits me as well!

    1. I hope so too.. let me know when you get it! ;-)

  3. ...and maybe you just have a thing for tigers?

  4. I hope Tony is enjoying permanent retirement. Lord knows he deserves it! Looking forward to reading about your new adventures around the Land Down Under.

    1. It's been a long time since I've seen a message from Operator7G!! Thanks so much and keep in touch!

  5. Oh that's very nice bike. Have you tried BMW F800GS?

  6. Hoping all is well, Sherri. Are you still blogging and riding? No updates here since 2015. Is there a newer site? All the best.