I remember one afternoon when I was thirteen, I has recently received an atlas from my neighbors as a birthday present and had found another world map lying around. I started fantasizing about doing a road trip through the USA, and started planning how long it would take me and which route I should take. I arrived to the conclusion that it would take me about half a year to complete. Fast forward 15 years later, I arrived to San Francisco with an awesome dream, but no clue on how to turn it into reality. The dream was to motorbike through the USA and perhaps go up to Canada too. But I didn’t really know how everything would work out buying a bike in one of the world’s most expensive cities, to transfer it to my name, getting insurance for it, where I would sleep, which route it’d take, which bike to choose, where I’d go, what I’d eat and where I’d be able to store my stuff since all I had was a backpack.
On the plane there, I was fortunate enough to sit next to a motorbike mechanic, who gave me really good tips on buying a bike and it’s paperwork: buy from someone who’s had the bike for long, don’t buy a salvaged bike, make sure the brake pads and chain and tires are in good condition, get an insurance quote online, to take the golden gate for free, just cover your number plate with your foot while crossing the bridge.
I spent the first couple of nights couchsurfing, and checking out bikes I’d find on Gumtree, dealerships or Facebook marketplace. I finally went for an SV650S (I like sporty bikes), because I have the same model back home and I know it’s very reliable and I’m very familiar with it and it’s maintenance.
When I bought the bike, I got a couple of quotes for motorcycle insurance online, and choose the best package, including road assistance, should anything happen. It was pretty cheap. Then went to DMV to put the bike on my name, and pay the corresponding taxes. Once all that was ready, and I took the bike for some nice rides around the city, I went down to Campbell to stay with Chris.