Friday was ‘pishin’ with rain, but Heather the weather’s “eyezobarrrs” promised a good weekend. Heather, I owe yer a big kiss, Saturday was blistering as we set off for Weymss Bay (or however you spell it) for the ferry. We bumped into Lynda and Lachie and many more folk who hadn’t made it until Saturday. After a 35 minute ride on “Juno” we laded in “Rothesay”, a couple of miles down the coast and we arrived at the council playpark which was to be the venue for the rally. The site really has an amazing outlook. I think we up here in the “frozen” north sometimes forget just how splendid our country is when the sun comes out, not surpring we forgot this year!, no I’m not going to moan about the rain again! . There was a fair contingent of Germans and I believe some Belgians and loads of folk from the North of England. Most I spoke to had been to the rally many times already. I have to admit this was my first time. I’d always meant to do this rally, like ye do, but something else always came up. Now I know what I was missing. There were real bogs and showers and a old scout hut where the thankless task of feeding this lot took place, as well as free endless tea and coffee, a masterful touch at any rally, especially at 5am when you just can’t be arsed sparking up the trangia.
The Islanders MCC Island Invasion Rally has been going for a good few years now. The site, nestled in the bay of Port Bannatyne on the Isle of Bute. Generally know as “Rossi” or “Doon The Watter” if like me your from in or around Glasgow. I hadn’t been there since I was about fourteen years old when we went on a school trip on the paddle steamer “Waverley” Having originally planned to get here on friday the world conspired against us, including Annie’s dragstar’s alarm doing a sterling job of immobilising her bike, by flatttening the sodding battery, course it’s a gel battery, don’t try bump starting a 650 dragstar, it’s not even interested. Having met up with the crew who had made it on Friday, the partying ensued. “Paddicraic” entertained us with some rousing jiggy numbers, followed by “Sticky Fingers” who kept everyone dancing. The main event of the evening was of course the “Miss Island Invasion 2002” competition, but you’ll have to look on page two for more of that, providing ye’ve got a strong stomach 😉 As usual I was too friendly with Mr Daniels to get it together to note the prizewinners, however a special friendship award was given to the the guy’s from Germany, and the Saints and Sinners won best club turnout, not surpriing since the entire population of Dundee seems to be in that club 😉
the sign in tent did a good line in ladies clothing too
Some rallies have miss wet T-shirt competitions or strippers, this rally has the “Miss Island Invasion” competition, which accounted for the the dubiously cross dressed visions which wandered the site on Saturday, and Rothesay too, to the bemusement of the locals.
The entrants seemed to approach the challenge with vigour and imagination, from the Hyacinth Bucket impressionists to the Soho pole dancers, in some cases nothing was left to the imagination!, eek.
These great sports provided endless laughs on Saturday night with thier antics on the dance floor, from the befrocked bloke headbanging to AC/DC to begin the proceedings to the blokes who, not having quite got the hang of dress etiquette were wandering with the backs of thier dress tucked in thier pants. according to my source, apparently a great fear amongst women, that is thier own dresses in thier pants, not the blokes.
The spectacle defies description so just look at the photos. Walter’s best chat up line cut no cheese with the entry from Spinal Tap My missus says there’s a law about stripes with spots Being a Bank Holiday, albeit an english one, the rally was going on until monday, by sunday night there was still a few hundred folk left for the celeidh, gawd, cannae spell that either. The battle re-enacment in the afternoon turned outto be for the kids, ha ha, loads of women waiting for the site of hairy blokes running about in plaids with big swords, still the we’uns seemed to be having a good time knocking seven shades of shit out of wooden red-coats.
The crowd were slightly more subdued in the evening, three nights hard partyin’ takes a lot of energy, but the shambolic “strip the willow” was still carried out with enthusiasm.
Yer Knickers, Yer Knickers! Confronted with such visions, some folk plainly couldn’t control their primal urges 😉 According to Ian from the Islanders there were about 640 folk who signed in with loads more who didn’t. Looked like about 800 or more folk. Not surprising this rally’s so popular. Thanks to the Islanders MCC for all their hard effort, great party, I’ll be doing it all again next year. Haw, z’ma lippy awright?
Words & Pics by Al