‘PLEASE FILL IN THE BOX UNDER ‘PERSONALIZE THIS BOOK’ STATING WHETHER YOU’D LIKE THE BOOK LEFT BLANK , OR SIGNED WITH/WITHOUT A MESSAGE
A few years ago, I found myself between boats and hence well in funds, so my wife Roz and I decided to blow some of it while we could. I’d been itching to ride a Harley-Davidson across America for years, but a life at sea had restricted my US travels to the coasts. Now it was the High Plains or bust. Inconveniently, Roz had never even sat on a bike. I didn’t fancy a passenger for twelve thousand miles, and she couldn’t face clinging to me for a hundred days, so she borrowed an ancient 100cc Suzuki and made it to the Driving Test centre on her forty-fifth birthday. To her own surprise, she passed. The following morning we flew to Baltimore and she bought a yellow 883 ‘Sportster’, all leather tassels, sexy buckhorn bars and straight-through pipes. It met my Soft-tail off the ship from Southampton and we were away. The rest of the trip is about me having an improbably exciting time while Roz reached a truce with the massive reality of the US road-burner. The ride of a lifetime was soon transformed into a pilgrimage in search of the American people who the Harleys dragged from under stones, off mountainsides, out of the swamps and the prairie dust. They looked after us, rode with us, worked with us, filled us with drink, took us to church on Sunday and to the cleaners at the poker table. A few threatened us. Most treated us like royalty. The scenery was phenomenal, but it is the folks I’ll remember – and riding Death Valley with an engine air-cooled by wind 35 degrees hotter than my blood.
‘Best selling book at the 2001 London Boat Show!’ – Kelvin Hughes
‘Deserves to battle for bookshelf space with Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.’ Sunday Express
‘A pithy throbber of a book.’ Chris Stewart, author of ‘Driving over Lemons’
‘There is only one way to see America and its people…and that is astride a motorcycle….Listening to Cunliffe…..you’ll understand why.’ METRO
‘Funny, often daring and outlandish incidents, with characters and situations that border at times between the dangerous, the sublime and the ridiculous. Tom Cunliffe’s impromptu take and lessons learned anew are truly stirring. His writing is laced with facts and figures about this great country of ours which he and Roz were exploring with new eyes for the first time on two wheels each, coast to coast. His snapshot insight into those people and places made a profound mark on them both, and will do the same on any who read this amazing book. Case in point, for one, is Chapter 13 ‘Ranchers and Farmers’ – so eloquently written it left me close to tears. And so had some other incidents and flashbacks Tom and Roz had all along the way; comparisons to their homeland or other far-off places they knew from their earlier sailing adventures. A powerful trip! I guarantee you’ll enjoy this book. As I read along I’m thinking of a lot of people I know who would benefit by reading Good Vibrations – especially in these troubled times we are about to face. It gives inspiration without sounding preachy.’ Maureen USA January 2017
Four colour illustrations plus map. 381 pages