Cheyenne was snoring on her bed, I was tired of reading and as I was working a late overtime shift I had an hour to myself before my wife came home from her late shift at work. Better keep putting miles on the Vespa I told myself.
I have just passed the official break-in period of 600 miles (1000 kilometers) and with a gearbox oil change under my belt I have been seeking the elusive top speed in short bursts. So far it's about 60 mph (95km/h), though with a headwind a modest 53 seems the top. The engine feels strong all the way and vibrations present below 35 fade away around 45mph so 50mph (80km/) is a comfortable cruising speed.
I think that over the next few thousand miles the engine will loosen up but if next year 55mph (90km/h) as a steady cruising speed seems busy I may consider a more liberal exhaust to increase upper range torque. I am told a SIP Road 2 is a direct replacement which leaves room for the spare wheel in its side carrier. I am bearing it in mind. My goal is to travel easily with traffic on the highway in a 55mph zone, where speeds up to 60 or more are commonplace. The P200 will get there over time.
I kept up with traffic on the highway the six miles from my house to the turn off north on a Middle Torch Key. I rode the winding north go the causeway between Middle and Big Torch where I stopped on Dorn Road. The sun was setting - fast!
I hardly had time to ride down 50 yards of gravel before the orange orb was almost buried in the mangroves and salt water.
Riding back I tried to catch a reflection in the mirror but with the engine running the picture became a testament to the vibrations of the small two stroke single.
Never mind the Vespa; the views were tremendous.
Dorn Road, like all side trips in these islands is a dead end. However this road unlike most is quite long, eight miles from the Overseas Highway to the turn around.
And of course by the time I got back it was dark and a small yellow Labrador had woken up and was very ready.
Back out again, this time with the car for a walk at the Ramrod Pool. So then we were both happy.