It seems we've been plotting this trip for so long, but somehow the departure date has managed to creep up on us. 

Resignations have been tendered, airfares purchased and a loose route plotted, and in just under 9 weeks the three of us will be flying out of London. We'll be reunited with our bikes in New York and will set off for what promises to be the trip of a lifetime. 

There's quite a lot still to do between now and then, not least of all completing my motorcycle license! And if you know me, you'll know I've got colour-coded spreadsheets covering all the tasks to be ticked off before we go.

I'd like to think we've struck a good balance between being well prepared and keeping our plans flexible enough to embrace opportunities as they present themselves - if there's one thing we've learned from the trips we've done so far, it's that the key to enjoying yourself is to adapt... you can't change the weather, or the border crossing procedure, or that you're stranded somewhere for a few days while you wait for parts, so you may as well make the most of it. 

We're busily prepping the bikes, making some modifications and doing as much preventative maintenance as we can. As I write this, Igor's sitting across from me at the dining table with the entire wiring loom from his bike in a Medusa-like configuration, doing some proper fixes on the patch jobs we made during our trip across Russia, Mongolia and Central Asia in 2013. One of those jobs we meant to get around to years ago... there's no better motivator than a hard deadline!