Yup- only 43 years, seems like yesterday to some, including our new Chairman & his Virgin SR. You see Johnny has been there from the start & fotos of him, in black & white, are included in the Gallery in this web site- worth a look & a laff.
We chilled out, as can be seen, & there was a reluctance to put on our gear again.
So onward to Dumfries where we experienced our first hiccup- we got split in half & it could have been worser! No matter, we all arrived intact at our destination, the Gretna Halls Hotel, where we’ve stayed before.
Did we murder a shandy?- you bet we did. Geo & JG got the very best room (I seriously don’t know how), with a patio with furniture. They had to turn away many seemingly thirsty people & finally moved the “furniture” to the main drag.
Note the Immediate Past Chairman- VERY relaxed- as a neut & asking Heather where her pigtails had gone?
The Friday dinner was fine, however, our Chairman started mixing with some guys as big as himself- and that takes some doing. They happened to be Dutch Harley (ioyhnbirhtj) riders, with very large Harleys. One sported a rear tyre that wouldn’t have embarrassed a big truck. Good guys really & we listened to them leaving the next morning- like 10 tractors moving off at once.
Great merriment all evening with very acceptable menu & quality. The next day start was not till 10.15, which got us acclimatised to an extent. Temperature. around 100F, or so it seemed. Somewhat lower than the day before.
Put that man down- Emma. You need to put a helmet on, at least!
A fab morning run via Langholm where we stopped for a while. The route continued to be terrific, finishing at Kielder Castle. Outstanding views of the huge Kielder Reservoir, which serves right down to Newcastle & beyond- we export some of our water to keep it topped up! Bet you didn’t know that Nikki!
The return journey headed for Hexham, but we skirted it heading for Haltwhistle. Again a great road, which HAS to be revisited.The bikes were let through at a junction, but not the cars by a belligerent Hummer driver & his very wide caravan. Did that deter our breakdown driver? Not a bit of it; Alan passed on a very narrow piece of road, & the writer anticipated a Glasgow Kiss from the bouncing trailer as it passed the ‘van. Then, the bold Sam, just blew it away- as he tends to do.
Recovery phase & then off to dinner. Again the food was very good & the wine flowed, especially at the top table! All went according to plan, with the exception of a presentation to John, in recognition of his years being involved in the running of WSVMCC. Much appreciated.
Allegedly, there was the sounds of a MURDER happening at about 2am outside. Most commented on this, but we did a roll-call after breakfast, but it wisna one of us
This is where most of us split up from the ferry guys- with fond farewells & the odd tear in the eye & wailing