This was one weekend that Chris and I had promised ourselves faithfully we would get away early from work on the Friday and get up to Harperley at a leisurely pace. One reason for this was that we were taking Mabel our van instead of the Pick-Up. I love Mabel but she has seen better days at the moment and her engine is a bit ‘tired’ especially for pulling the trailer tent very far……….so we were all packed and ready to go just after lunch……… but as always with us something goes wrong………
We eventually set off at 4 o’clock in the afternoon. It had been a glorious morning, warm and sunny……... but no, when it came to us finally getting away we managed to drive off in a violent thunder storm that lasted until we hit the A1M!!!!!!!!
Half way there I happened to mention money, big mistake……..no, neither of us had thought to bring any, so after a slight ‘domestic’ it was decided we had £5.00 for emergencies and my cash card…….we did find a cash point at a garage, but you guessed it was ‘out of order’!!!! On to Harperley and hopefully some kind friends who could perhaps give us a sub until we found a cash machine that was actually working……..
Now as I have mentioned Mabel is a little in need of some repair, I could at this point think that it is only the guttering and the odd hole in the roof……… I was getting wet through……..but she didn’t even want to pick up any speed even going down hill!!!!!
We had organised to bring some steaks for our BBQ that we had planned with Maurice and Jean Stewart for that night, so not knowing how long it would take us to get there we were panicking slightly, and still running in and out of really horrendous weather……. But after a couple of phone calls to Maurice and Jean on the way, (of course this is Maurice’s neck of the woods, so to speak) we got to the camp site by 7.30pm……… not raining…… Quick get the blinking tent put up FAST!!!!!!!!!
A very welcome glass of nicely chilled white wine in hand, tent almost up, both Pebbles and Pippin checking out the new patch, BBQ under way, we started to relax……… great food and good company……….and our tent now fully operational……..
Some of the other early arrivals had gone down to the local Pub for a meal so we didn’t catch up with them until………
As they came back to camp one by one they descended on ‘Jeans Chuck Wagon’ which was now closed for food………but the wine cellar was still open! Bringing anything they could to sit on, Maurice and Jean’s awning soon became a very cosy place indeed……..then the inevitable…….pouring rain, did any of us care? NO…….
Sue Cook talked us all into playing Family Fortunes and then was summoned to go off to bed……was Dave cold?.......
The rest of us, with me as games master played for a very hilarious 1 ½ hours more before heading off to bed still in the pouring rain at around midnight………I for one wouldn’t have missed a minute……….
Saturday morning…….why do you wake up so early when you don’t have to?
The weather was still disgracing itself but no one can order good weather……..
The run that was arranged for that morning took us up through the most wonderful picturesque landscape, we were literally up in the clouds in some places, unfortunately it was a shame that the visibility wasn’t all that good as the views would have been stunning……..
That afternoon back at base saw hair cuts all round, some just to make people tidy for the night, and some to get them into the 1940’s type part……
The 40’s do was a really great idea and most people did make the effort. I had trawled the charity shops in Bridlington looking for a 1940’s type suite that would fit Chris and did get lucky, so with the odd thing borrowed, like an original Trilby, Chris did a decent ‘Brat Pack’ impersonation (if only he could have sung like Frank)! Any way with me as a Land Army girl we managed to put on a reasonable show……..mean while Pebbles and Pippin were tucked up in Mabel as no dogs were allowed in the restaurant……
We were served an authentic meal of 40’s type grub, Chris and I had Corned Beef Pie and Cabbage, it was fab!! But there were other delights like Spam Fritters, Mince and Dumplings etc……I was podged but still managed some Crumble and Ice Cream!!!!!
I did manage to win a bottle of Bubbly for my outfit…..it certainly wasn’t for my singing.
I just love Karaoke, I can’t sing but I can’t resist…….now this time luckily I had a female chum in the form of Jean Stewart she likes to ‘sing’ too…… (Maurice tends to think the same as Chris……embarrassing)! Normally Dennis carries me through but he wasn’t there…. Any way both of us girls had a really great time. Chris Haigh and I did our absolute best to murder Madonna’s Like A Virgin, but we won’t go there……..
Later, much later, we even managed to get Maurice up singing Build Me Up
Buttercup…..never took Maurice for being a fan of the Four Tops……….
We wandered back to camp clutching all our goodies, slightly horse and a little merry, but we all agreed what a great night it had been.
Sunday was the real Rally Day, we woke up to glorious sunshine at 7.30…… but then all changed, (I think that this may have been because Maurice decided to wash his Minor)……. after that there wasn’t a lot of improvement from the day before which was a shame, but everyone’s mood was still really high……Pippin managed to disgrace herself by rolling in sheep sh…… off to be hosed under the cold tap!!!!!! One very indignant Jack Russell….. Pebbles meanwhile was having a crafty snigger, as of course she would never dream of doing anything so uncivilised…….
I have now picked up a few hints and tips on the Concourse judging, (thanks to Lesley Hewlett, who told me just what Bill was doing as he was judging). I think that I must have mentioned somewhere that I am getting into the older Minors…..
Richard Lee (Area 1) with his super little mid green Late Series 2, four door saloon was one entrant for the Grand Masters, to me this car was really perfect, it was sprayed panel by panel in Richard’s front garden with the help of his brother Ken twenty eight years ago, the under seal was the original factory done job……….he also told me that he does drive this car to every event, I must say I was fascinated by the work that was put in to this car to get it judged………
Gold Concourse for me was Malcolm Bainbridge (Area 1) and his Series 2, two door saloon in Clarendon Grey born in 1953 overhead valve 803cc…….fab….
We had taken the trailer tent down first thing in the morning while the sun was shining, they are a pig to fold if they are wet……..so, we plus the two Jack Russells were bunking in with Maurice and Jean. There was a chance of Sunday lunch down in the restaurant, but the four of us had elected to have a glass of wine or two and BBQ at the ‘Chuck Wagon’, all very pleasant, and I must say there were plenty of people stood out in the drizzle who’s nose’s were twitching at the scent of our smoke………
We all huddled into the prize giving tent at 4 o’clock, on this occasion our Branch came away with nothing trophy wise, but we didn’t mind as we all had had such a super weekend.
Time to say our goodbyes and head off on the journey home, and as we had come the weather was really awful, we had our fingers crossed (or at least Chris did) that Mabel would make the trip. Chris actually confessed as we were driving into Brid that he had thought that we would be coming home on the back of a low loader………….glad he didn’t tell me that really………
Sue, Chris, Pebbles & Pippin