A chance encounter with Simon and Lisa

Do I need to tell you who Simon and Lisa Thomas are? If you are into adventure riding I bet you know them.  Maybe you know them from the many activities they do as part of their travels around the world, beyond the motorcycles, such as their public speaking or charity work.  Just in case, here is the quick summary: they have been traveling the world on motorcycles for more than 10 years (13 years and counting!).

a chance encounter with Lisa and Simon at the BMW shop

a chance encounter with Lisa and Simon at the BMW shop

I have known about Simon and Lisa for a while from reading travel discussions on adventure riding motorcycle forums but I only had the great privilege of meeting them in September of 2013 when they stopped by Eugene to talk about their travels around the world at our local BMW shop.  Thanks to Scott and Madelyn at the European Motorcycles of Western Oregon for that opportunity to meet them and spend time with them back in 2013.  When I was invited to that gathering, Simon, being informed of my Brazilian connection, asked if I had Cachaça, the Brazilian Rum.  Not only did I have cachaça, but I also had the caipirinha paraphernalia.  Added lime and sugar to the mix and Simon showed us what he learned from their travels through Brazil.

Simon, caipirinha expert - September 2013

Simon, the caipirinha expert – September 2013

Three years later, yesterday I got out of the office on my lunch break to run an errand at the Oregon DMV (my WR250R’s rear wheel chewed the bike’s license plate) and since I was in the neighborhood I decided to make a quick stop at the BMW/Ducati shop to snap a photo of a new bike they have on the floor.  First thing Mickey said as I walked in is that Simon and Lisa were there.  What?  They had stopped for a very quick visit as they traveled north to participate on the June 23-26 Touratech Rally – West, in Plain, WA.  They were traveling with another family, who also travels on motorcycle!  They are Ted, Sandy and Jack Borden (very nice people as well, check their site and learn about their travels!).

Scott & Madelyn, Simon & Lisa, and Ted, Sandy & Jack. 6/22/2016

Scott & Madelyn, Simon & Lisa, and Ted, Sandy & Jack. 6/22/2016

It was great to have a chance to re-connect with Simon and Lisa. Lisa even gave me a quick lesson on Instagram!  Thank you Lisa! And what about a selfie with Simon?

What about a selfie with Simon?

What about a selfie with Simon?

And I even got to sit on Simon’s motorcycle and imagine my own travels.  One day.


If you run into them on your own travels, stop and say hi. They are great people, inspirational and contagious on their enthusiasm for adventure riding and other important life matters.


There you go, true inspiration! (photo by Carl Best)

What was meant to be a five-minute errand turned into a short adventure, when I got to connect with Simon and Lisa after almost three years since the last time (who knows how many thousands of miles they traveled since that last time) and got a sneak preview on their plans for Alaska this summer.  Check their site, 2RideTheWorld, for more information.

Thank you for reading!


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