In August 2008 I shipped my gleaming, eight month old Harley Nightster to Cyprus, where it was used to bob around Limassol and the surrounding countryside. Truly great riding! I didn’t expect to hold on to it for that long and I certainly didn’t expect that I’d want to ship it back when the time came to return home. However, earlier this week I found myself, on the hottest day of the year, helping a freight crew in Colchester crowbar the bike out of its crate. Then I had a bit of a ‘chicken and egg’ situation on my hands. As a British resident, it was illegal for me to ride with foreign plates but I couldn’t register the Nightster without an MOT. And I still needed insurance to get it to the MOT station.
Finding an insurance company that would insure a foreign-plated bike wasn’t easy, so a shout out to Bike Sure: www.bikesure.co.uk for making it possible to legally ride to and from an MOT station. Riding the bike again, after it had spent nearly two months at sea, was a blast once I’d jump started the dead battery and put enough petrol in it to see me off the premises. Prior to arriving at the MOT station, my only concern had been whether UK regulations would let the bike pass with its wonderfully noisy Vance Hines’ pipes – they don’t have MOTs for bikes in Cyprus yet!
However, it turns out that the pipes weren’t the problem. The bike failed due to a busted front wheel bearing, most probably caused by excessive speed when negotiating Limassol’s many speed humps – the price for being a hooligan! So I’m still not able to complete the re-importation process just yet, but pleased to know about a potentially dangerous fault that can easily be fixed.