By Mike Peake.
Oh my good gods! it's a miracle! An honest to goodness, I've found Jesus, water into wine (that's my favourite) MIRACLE! The photo above was taken by Paul Cheetham - and I can't quite believe I'm saying this - he has actually managed to get the famous landmark AND classic cars in the same picture! What do you mean where? Right there above Poppy's boot. That's the Needles that is and the famous lighthouse! Well done Paul!!!
Sorry, I got distracted by the miracle.
Anyway, it was time to leave the beach side car park for our next leg to the Sammy Miller Motorbike Museum. It was about now that I realised I should have listened to my subconscious and parked nose 1st. You see, the inside of my windscreen and all my rear view mirrors were now covered in sea spray which, when you try and wipe off, just smears horrendously. I’m sure this leg was full of lovely scenery and great roads, but all I could see was smeary green bits, smeary grey bits and a smeary red Corsair.
Windy Sweet Kitten came to my rescue when we got to the museum with some fresh clean water and a clean cloth; my sight was miraculously restored.
Some of the crew needed to stock up on food and disappeared into the museum café. Phil only wanted a baked potato but they’d run out so he made do with cake. Others braved the long waiting times for more substantial meals while Anita and I were still full up from our HUGE breakfast.
The museum was AWESOME! Even for someone like me that knows very little about bikes, but now, I want a classic motorbike! Hundreds of fantastic bikes on display and every single one of them runs. (I asked) The really early ones were a bit nuts though and were basically an engine strapped to a bicycle.
Others had leather belt drives with the belt running uncomfortably close to where ones gentleman parts would be should you be daft enough to want to ride one or have the sudden urge to sing soprano.
For some reason, I was particularly drawn to the Triumphs in the display, especially the 1942 War Department bike.
Lots of other makes were there too to evoke nostalgia. Brough Superior, Norton, BSA, Ducati and even Harleys including an Indian.
Once we were able to tear ourselves away from the museum, it was time for even more photos in the car park.
It was now time to head for the final stop of the day. Well, it would have been, but the greedy guts Jaguar boys had waited so long for their food that they’d only just made it into the Museum. The siren call of the Ringwood brewery had already snared the rest of us, so we said we’d meet them there and headed off through more of the twisty turny uppy downy roads of the New Forest to fill the small brewery car park with classic cars. The Greedy Guts Jaguar Boys caught us up too.
Now I know what your thinking. Is visiting a Brewery on a driving tour a good idea? Well, for the drivers I guess not. Limiting yourself to one was tough but we made sure we all bought a different one and therefore were able to at least sample all the beers on offer and decide which ones we’d buy in the shop to take home. There was also a Bedford ‘O’ series truck in the car park but despite everyone’s best efforts, Mrs FB Just wouldn’t see the benefits of a camper/beaver tail conversion.
Whilst relaxing and supping our pint, we decided that after the super posh nosh we’d enjoyed the night before, we needed to bring ourselves back down to earth. We all fancied fish and chips. However, the weather forecast for the evening was atrocious so we felt an indoor experience might be a good Idea. So, on Pants Perman’s recommendation, Phil booked us all into Bertie’s, a fish and chip restaurant in Lyndhurst. Phil doesn’t like battered fish. (I know! Clearly there is something very wrong there.) However, he didn’t mind the dinning choice as he would have a Pukka steak and kidney pie with gravy and mushy peas like a proper northerner! We could all see the Homer Simpson drooling as he thought of it.
Dinner rendezvous agreed, the great day’s touring came to an end. We said cheerio to the Greedy Guts Jaguar boys, Pants Perman and Don and Louisa before setting off for our accommodation to dress for dinner.
What? Really? End of a tour and not one breakdown? I hear you say. Well, it’s true. Not one breakdown during the tour. However, It did become apparent that the electric passenger window, this time on the Jensen got stuck open on the way back to the hotel. Again, Nick tried to claim he managed to get it closed but Jo immediately cut him off at the knees and claimed credit for the fix. I believe Jo. Two reasons for this; 1) I’m scared of Jo and 2) as I may have mentioned, I’ve never seen Nick with a spanner.
What? Really? End of a tour and only Don and Nick got lost? I hear you say? Well I’d like to say this is true but as none of us had read the tour notes, Gar could have been leading us around completely lost all day and none of us would have known.
So after a jolly nice trouble free day, we all met up again in Bertie’s fish and chip shop with a few tables stuffed in a corner so it could call itself a restaurant, for a jolly nice, trouble free meal. Well, I say trouble free, but you remember Phil drooling over the Pukka steak and kidney pie, chips, mushy peas and gravy that he was going to order? Well they’d only gone and run out of Pukka steak and kidney pies hadn’t they! This, on top of not having his baked potato at lunch time, proved just too much for our normally mild-mannered Phil. He had a full-on teenage strop and decided that he “might as well just have bloody chips then!”.
The rest of us were in a state of utter shock at this outburst from the normally quiet Phil and it took us a full 10 seconds of silence before we all burst out laughing. On the upside, I think we may have finally found a nickname for Phil when Nick tried to console him by saying. “Never mind Pukka Pies Phil, our dinner is lovely.” Pukka Phil it is then.
The Next Morning, Mrs FB and I decided that, after a leisurely breakfast, we’d have a bit of a drive around the forest park and get lost for a bit which we did and found three great river fords. After driving the 1st one, we thought we should have filmed that for the blog. So when we came to the next one, Mrs FB got her phone out and filmed. Except she still had it on photo mode.
When we were home, I let the “Sandy Balls? No. I always walk like this” chaps know that I was home and that if they hadn’t passed me they were welcome to pop in for a tea and a wee stop.
Well they hadn’t passed me as Gar was leading and he still had his sat nav on “Taxi Driver” mode so had taken a route via Weymouth and Reading according to the rest of the chaps. So, 30 minutes after my text, I was crushed in the stampede for the facilities shortly before being crushed in the 2nd stampede when the chaps smelled the freshly cooked rock cakes that Mrs FB had made specially.
So after a great weekend we all made it home without any problems at all.
Apart from Nick. Electrical gremlins struck again when Nick pulled into a petrol station to refill the Jensens Bunkers. The little electric motor that opens the fuel cap lock refused to cooperate and wouldn’t open the fuel cap. Yet again, Nick tried to claim credit for taking covers off and prodding the manual release and thus saving the day with a flourish. I don’t know about you, but I’m calling bull poopy on that one! It was Jo, wasn’t it Nick?
So once again, massive thanks to all the chaps of all genders that joined us for the weekend and made it such fun. Particularly Gar Cole for all his organising and enthusiasm. None of these events would happen without him. THANK YOU GAR. WE ALL LOVE YOU!
Photo credits to everyone I stole pictures from but especially Paul Cheetham from whom I stole the most.
I hope you enjoyed the blog and I hope it has inspired lots more of you to join us on our adventures. We’d love to see you so keep an eye on the events section.
See you all at the NEC then chaps! Don’t forget your discount tickets using our club discount code.
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