So …… it was Mark’s impending 50th, naw wait… 40th… 😉 …. did he want a zip up cardigan ?, some pish ‘n go slippers ? or a Meershchaum pipe even ? naw…. He wanted us all to go to the Ogri rally for his birthday party… how could we refuse … After all I’d been meaning to do this rally for many years.. Mark’s been a regular at the Ogri, goin’ since he was two years old, albeit was a long pedal on his tricycle in those days. So, some 7200 miles was covered by 18 of us for a birthday bash.. Well, he’d better be comin’ tae Kota Balikpapan for ma birthday !
Chris and me left Thursday intending to stop off for an appointment with some mates’ floor near Stoke, as usual the ‘dae we’, ‘dae we no’ dance of the waterproofs took place, with us plumping for ‘dae’…. which was handy given that, typical for late August, it hosed it down all the way down the ’74, thankfully it gave up a bit beyond Carlisle After some sustenance a comfy couch and beer (cheers Alan & Emma 🙂 we were off for the second leg, after all, as a wise man once said, ‘a journey must have two legs or will fall on it’s arse’. After 420 miles later we finally ended up at an Airfield outside Cirencester, sat nav wasn’t necessary, just ride until ye can see a Jumbo jet over the hedge.
Speaking of Jumbo jets, as well as being the erstwhile home of the Ogri, the airfield houses a big plane breakers, Air Salvage Intl, who save parts and break up big planes like Jumbos, wouldn’t mind a rake through their parts bins, hmmmm, frrrrrrr, danger ! impending thigh rubbing alert……. lots of aircraft grade ally and shiny bits that I could put to good use on my next bike build, even if the bits would probably cause the credit card to go supernova…
The rally site is on the flat field behind the clubhouse, a veritable verdent grove with the marquees and stalls with wooden tables arranged around the trees which made for a very pleasant atmosphere in which to drink and blether.
Having procured my tokens it was straight to the bar, for it was… beer o’clock, there was also a choice of twenty or so real ales on tap, I have to say I avoided them as excess consumption can tend to make the ground come up at you suddenly and at an alarming rate. Given Robbo’s preference for quantities of the Rose cider he did well to remain upright..mostly… 🙂
There were 950 through the gate from all over the place, hell bent on having a good time, the Pegasus were over from Germany, I had the pleasure of attending their rally a couple of years ago. This year’s rally was raising money for “The Men In Scarlet”, The Royal Hospital Chelsea Ran into friends new and old, including everyone’s favourite mad motorcycle recovery bloke, Pug, we determined that we hadn’t seen each other for six years since he upset several Boom owners at Stormin’ insisting that their trikes were production and not eligible for the custom show 🙂
Friday night’s entertainment began with the excellent ‘Black Nasty’, (not ‘The Black Nasties as announced the DJ) comprised of members of the Ogri, Col, Mark & Co played a great set, having got very drunk watching them previously at a suspects bash it was good to see them play though a big PA and whilst I was slightly less inebriated. Followed by the ‘Dirty Earth Band’ whose set continued to fill the floor, Subway were the final band whom I did see/hear bits of in the blur of early onset inebriation.
We were kept well entertained on Saturday, bikes gathered round the trees (well they didn’t actually gather themselves, but their owners put them there, a bike arriving on it’s own would have been weird, but cool) for the Custom Show, a motley collection of fine machines were on display. Bernie’s recently fininshed Z project decided that it was having none of this fangled electickery business and went in the huff with the interloping battery hiding in it’s midst. It decided to have another huff with it’s gearbox and refuse to go into second gear unless the engine was running, which led to several near coronaries as we tried to bump start it in first gear, it would have helped if Bernie had waited to get off the grass before dumping the clutch 🙂 Last I heard the engine had suffered a particularly nasty bout of oleaginous diarrhea by the side of the M5, hope it’s not too terminal mate….. As the sun split the skies on Saturday I wandered around the seeking the out the interesting and shed built creations that it would appear Europe, well France are keen to kill off in a flurry of ill thought out and misguided VTA legislation. I was rewarded with Dave’s Norton, which stopped me (and many other folk) in their tracks. I sat awhile with him and his mate and got the s.p. on it and shot a shed load of photos, hopefully should appear in a mag soon, and here of course. It is a sublime study in shed built brassery……..
The silly games began with moped racing, water balloons and flour and lots of hilarious crashes, with rally virgins and folk whose birthday it was going in the stocks, Mark was very insistent that his birthday wasn’t until Sunday, an interuption of heavy rain sent everyone for the marquee until the sun re-appeared. The sun had donn’d it’s weekend Homburg again and we sat around the show drinking a newly discovered (by us) brew called ‘Desperados’, with lime too, all posh’n that dontchyaknow, a tasty beverage which is a tequila flavoured beer at 5.9%, brewed, not in sunny Meheeho as one might expect, but in France … go figure … but apparently you can get it in 5l mini kegs hee hee….. Steph, gie’s yer Costco card !!!!!
As we drank in the sun were serenaded? by Steve and his Mandolin followed by Porky doing the stand up sit doon song, which is always good for a laugh. Ashley, the Ogri Prez Lee’s son entertained us as we sat around drinking with some quite brilliant card tricks and some slight of hand, despite only having been doing it for a couple of years it was still impossible to see how he was doing it even that up close. Grub was provided in a large marquee, it was very very good I have to say, and not just due to the alchohol driven appetite, I had the Tornado of Wildebeest Ribs in an oaxter of Bald Eagle, mmmmmm tasty… Good scran…. and a big thanks tae the lass’s who manned the monster baguette stall…. absorbed the alchohol nicely… First band up on Saturday evening was ‘Soul Street, a mad but highly entertaining ‘show’ band form Newcastle who had the whole place going with such rock anthems as ‘Shang-a-lang’…….. with a lead singer called ‘Bam’ he appeared to live up to the Scots vernaclar meaning of his name as he plastic sword fought with the Barrel Biker’s pirates. Following them were ‘The Inflatables’. Trophies…. er… haven’t got the list of bike show winners yet, hopefully it’s on it’s way, the other winners, due to folk not tuning up in the right order 🙂 may well be in the wrong place/order/space time continuum, so any resemblance to people fictional, alive or otherwise is pure coincedence. A surprise special guest was ridden into the marquee to present the trophies, none other than Paul Sample, do I need to tell you who he is ?? 🙂
Pass us the Autosol……
Special Mention to Georgina Clarke a 125cc learner and Dad who took 26 hours to get to rally from Stafford,they were forced to camp at a pub due to torrential rain and thunder and lightning. This is one of those rallys that I was left thinking, why the feck haven’t I got my finger out and gone before, an excellent, family friendly rally with a great atmosphere in chilled surroundings. Guess I’ll be comin’ back then… Cheers tae the Ogri folk for a great party, see ye’s next year…. p.s. if anyone found a pair of purple anodised steel rimmed specs let me know, coz, like a right arse I left them on top of my tent bag and rode off site …….