Nurburgring, the anticipation

Every year it's the same

The roads get dryer, the tarmac is warmer. There's more daylight, I want to ride my bike. It's really quite inevitable; The season start of the Nurburging season is about to begin. When these feelings kick in, they take me back to those numerous trips that I've done with my friends.

So far, this year

The whole process starts way before the season starts, way before the light and spring is even remotely starting. The whole thing is blown open when the Nurburgring GmBH releases the new opening times for this year.
That's when we start our planning. We get out a big calendar and mark in the opening times, and when we can go. Trying to maxmise track-time with as few days of holiday as possible.
This can take quite a long time, and is kind of like laying a jigsaw puzzle. It all has to fit in, holiday, opening times, travel, money, friends, etc, etc.
Then it's time to start booking rooms and channel crossings.
But this is all just technical stuff that needs to be resolved.

The anticipation of that morning

What I'm really looking for is that special morning. It's the morning after the rushing around packing your stuff. In the evening we usually run around like headless chickens trying to get all our things with us. The passports, the booking references, the waterproof gloves, the toothbrush, enough pairs of socks and so on, and on. When we finally have everything packed, we're usually too wired to go to sleep, and we're usually up very early too. We're waiting for that morning.
We've woken up, had a coffee, and put everything on the bikes. Rolled them out, zipped our leathers and donned the helmets. We're ready to roll. It's eerily quiet everywhere, we fire up the bikes and get rolling immediately. It's Silly O'Clock in the morning. I feel stiff, tired, but wired from the coffee, happy knowing where I'm going, nervous that I've got everything, but above all, there's a calmness within. This calmness is enfoced by the calmness in the air. We roll out through the estate onto the towns main streets. There's virtually no cars and we just glide through town.
Wearing ear-plugs means that the whole world is kind of distant, but still the smell of a fresh morning is right there. I look in my mirrors and there she is, tagging along just perfectly. All is working fine. Exiting town towards the motorway we see a car or two, but apart from that it's clear sailing. We get onto the motorway and there's a few cars on there, but nothing that's going to slow us down. We pick up the speed and get comfortable. This is going to take a while.
I can't wait for that feeling - except, this time we're going in a car.

It's difficult to explain

If you haven't done it, it's very difficult explain the feeling. This feeling in the morning kind of sets off the whole trip.
Many hours later we'll be at the channel tunnel or the ferries. Then it's tackling the main-land; The task of crossing Belgium is probably just put there because otherwise it would just be too easy and too much fun. Yes, that's what Belgium is all about.
Anyway, once off the Belgian motorways there the roads in the Eifel mountains are very nice. The scenery is spectacular and the air is fresh. Again, the anticipation is building. The roads inspire you and remind you of what's to come. Just try to control yourself and it will all be fine.
And finally you arrive, you're tired, but you're happy. It's nice to finally be back amongst the other "free" spirits. It feels good to see that sports cars and race bikes aren't being spat on by a bunch of tree-huggers. It fills me respect for all these people who pour their heart and soul into these machines. In short; it's great to be back.

I just can't wait

I really can't wait to get there. Right now I feel trapped and suffocated sitting here in the office publishing this article. The roads are dry, it's warm enough out there, the sun is out. But there's still a long time to go before that special morning...
I can't wait!