I hear a hearty roar in the distance, and quickly jump to my feet. That must be my ride. I skip through the colourful lobby of Hotel DeBrett and outside into the brisk Auckland air. I tried to dress the part for today’s adventure — I’ve slung a leather jacket over my shoulders, pulled on my blue jeans, and worn my sturdiest black boots. I pause for a moment outside the hotel’s heavy glass doors and look left and then right; fashion boutiques are opening their shopfronts for the morning’s trade; well-suited men and women rush past with latte in hand as they scoot off to work. But the source of the noisy rumble? Well, there’s no sign of it. So I lean my back against the wall and I wait.
The loud revs get closer and closer and that’s when I see it — a shiny black Harley Davidson in all its glory, zooming towards me.
I’m about to hit the road for a couple of hours — cruising the streets with the wind in my face on a guided tour thanks to Bularangi Motorbikes New Zealand. It’s a pretty neat way to see the city sights, if you ask me.
My chauffeur is Divot, a friendly chap who’s been riding for years. After a brief introduction and an overview of our itinerary for the day, he kits me up in thick leather gloves and a helmet before steadying my hand as I hop onto the back of the Harley. I’ve been on bikes before but nothing this comfortable and luxurious. The beige leather passenger seat has a backrest and a headrest, and there’s plenty of leg room; all I have to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride. “This sure beats boarding a tour bus,” I shout over the revving engine as we kick off and cruise through the inner-city streets of downtown Auckland.