Prologue Having just lost 2hrs of typing and pictures I need to start again so please forgive me if the first part seems a little hurried. As an avid chronicler of motorcycle trips I now make a point of bringing a book to record what went on as an aide memoire when writing things up. If its not in the book it didn't happen. Of course this also means that I get to write things from muddymatt's point of view To get away from the wet and cold British climate a plan was hatched for the 3 Stooges to head to Portugal ride with minimal kit and stay in hotels and guesthouses. The team consisted of: RickA aka "Dicky Dakar" Timpo aka "Kermit" and little old me the handsome, suave and sophisticated muddymatt Fri 12th I left work in Nottingham to head up to Timpo's to drop my bike and kit off. After a tortuous 3 hr journey due to traffic I met a very croaky Timpo who was barely able to speak let alone shout due to him having suffered from a serious bout of man flu. (Hence the Kermit moniker) After horsing the bike and kit out of the van I headed off to Stoke on Trent where I was attending a reunion with some of my Uni mates as it was 20 years since we had graduated. Oop Hanley for a few beers followed by a curry and then dancing the night away we wobbled back to our hotel glad that the hotel bar was shut. Sat 13th Up for breakfast which I was not to keen for we got into cars and headed off to Alton Towers. Never one to let a headache get in the way of a good day we headed straight for Nemesis and had a good day racing around the rides as the queues were very small. My mat not realising that being at the front of the log flume with three lads in it was one of the funnier parts of the day. I headed back to the hotel picked my van up and then set off up to Timpo's. Arriving at Timpo's we had a minor tyre debate which was sorted and then we set to work getting mapping sorted followed by a pleasant evening with another curry spent with Sarah and the dogs. Quite tired so a relatively early night was had. Sun 14th Up @ 0715 for muddymatt due to the effects of the Green Masala Curry. Rick arrived at 0800 and we proceeded to load the van with bikes and kit. Having done this a few times before it only took 1/2 an hour. I was slightly concerned about the enjoyment Uncle Rick had when plugging himself into the seatbelt sitting cosily next to me But we had a good drive down to Plymouth with Kermit croaking away. A quick pasty for me and Burger King for Timpo and Rick at Exeter services saw us at the ferry terminal for just after lunch. The policeman was quite interested in our bikes and what we were doing but we soon were through Rick having remembered his passport and not left it on any table. Quite a few bikes on the key many of them going on an organised tour by road to Morocco. I chatted to a guy who had been made redundant and was off to Europe for 3 months on his XT660. We found our cabin on the Pont Aven and had a quick snooze followed by the obligatory trip to the bar. The swell had got up so Rick returned to the cabin. Timpo and I enjoyed a nice meal and switched to bottles of wine from the bar as our drink of choice. Rick made a brief appearance as the swell subsided and we went back to our cabin not too late to get some sleep. "The holiday had began !"