Obsession? What obsession?

I’ve got literally hundreds of compelling reasons to visit Europe. And none of them involve cuisine or scenery.

As much as I like bratwurst and beer, I think I want to see the beginnings of history as I know it: the Einspur and the Hildebrand & Wolfmuller — complete with rubber bands. The Horex, the Neckarsulm descendents, the Mammut and the Victoria also come to mind.

Some would fancy a coffee and a croissant in view of the Eiffel Tower. Ever since a good friend of mine called it a “crow’s oint”, I can’t even think of it another way.

It’s beside the point anyway, because I want to see the Ratier, Motobecane, Voxan and the Dollar.

I don’t know much about the Czech Republic or Slovakia, but one of them is home to the Bohmerland, so that’s gotta be worth a trip.

Sanglas in Spain, Motosacoche and Egli in Switzerland, Fabrique Nationale in Belgium … they’re everywhere!

Oh. Sorry. Bored are we? Lost? What the heck’s he talking about? (Reminder: See line 1 above). Suppose I rhymed off BMW, Norton, Triumph and Ducati? Are we getting the picture now? One track?

Yup. Motorcycles. I own four motorcycle encyclopedia (even if they don’t spell it that way) and 138 other books on motorcycles. If the gods smile and I win a lottery, I’ll organize them by country and just go on a heck of a tour.

Wait a minute. There are members of the Vincent owners’ club in 13 countries in Europe. And that’s counting the UK as one country. I bet I could even cadge a place to stay.

Meantime, it’s off to Ireland. Guinness and genealogy. Maybe some whiskey with an “e”.

And I’m really looking forward to an Ulster Fry. (Let’s get that cholesterol level up.) But ?rst, there’s the Fagan in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.