100% Biker 173

100% Biker 173
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In these enlightened days of the 21st century, you’d’ve thought that that the old spectre of discrimination against people on motorbikes would’ve long been a thing of the past, wouldn’t you? Well, it isn’t—it’s alive and well in Scotland.

A few years ago I was meandering me way up through the Highlands on the way to the Wildcat Rally and, having got utterly drowned (and caught, passed and left by a cement mixer truck… with the drum going round) going up the side of Loch Ness, decided to stop and call it a day for the day in Inverness. I was thinking about a hot shower, dry clothes and a cold beer (in that order too) as I pottered through the town, keeping an eye out for B&Bs with vacancies. Three times I pulled over when I saw signs and three times, by the time I’d walked up to the door, the sign had changed from ‘Vacancy’ to ‘No Vacancy’.

Really? Three B&Bs in a row all filled their last room in such a short time? It’s possible, of course, but I doubt it…

Then a few weeks ago as me and a mate were making our way up to Skye for an event, we got to Mallaig to get the ferry across, and once again, set about trying to get somewhere to kip prior to finding food and a glass or two of something foaming. Now I know it was a Friday night in August and so the number of places available would be few and far between, but you can normally find somewhere. We had a trot round town to no avail (particularly unhelpful they were too in Mallaig, unlike almost everywhere else in Scotland I’ve been), and so we looked on the Late Rooms website and found a place that had a twin left.

We got back on our bikes, rode over to it and, indeed, spotted a ‘Vacancy’ sign in the window. “Woohoo,” we thought, “thank ferk for that.” But, by the time we’d turned around and pulled up outside, the ‘Vacancy’ sign had gone, replaced with a ‘No Vacancy’ one. Now, again, I can understand this happening; they could’ve taken a phone booking or something, but five minutes later, after a last fruitless look around town, we passed the place again to see the ‘Vacancy’ sign back out again… tossers.