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Indian Welsh Rally - June 2009


A personal view:

Didn't we all do well? Travelled all the way to West Wales to a place called Newport, near Fishguard in Pembrokeshire. All this to meet and enjoy a couple of excellent days of companionship, friendship, fun and frolics with people whose common interest is old motorcycles and Indians in particular. What then? Then we travelled all the way back home again much richer in spirit for our efforts and
adventures. Someone has to make all this possible and, once again, our sincere thanks must go to Sybil and Mike for their foresight and efforts. It was superb. End of report? Not a bit of it.

Let's start with the weather. Someone had been doing some witch-doctor dances around the Tepee because the rain stayed away and we stayed dry and warm. Similarly everyone must have packed all their spanners and spares since, by and large, no-one needed them. Breakdowns! Only one I recall - the Chairman's outfit excepted. Maybe pushing an 80+ year old bike is a bit too hard Mike!
Perish the thought!

Talking of machinery there was a nice diverse collection of models (and makes) to capture the interest and imagination of both members and the public. You know the sort of comments "I had one of those back in the 40s, 50s, 60s". But doesn't time play tricks on peoples' memories. For example "Never let me down". "Went courting on one of those". "Nothing could catch it in our town". I even heard one old chap say "Those Braves were quite something else". On a personal note I agree with him - and yes I have ridden one. I have also ridden a Bantam - the one with high lift pushrods Brian!

Now where was I? Oh yes, the accommodation. Lovely comfortable hotel and superb campsite facilities. Both set in beautiful, idyllic surroundings. Things could not have been better. Go and try them out yourself if you don't believe me. Food was good with plenty of Welsh water (Stella, sounds Welsh doesn't it?)

Let's move on to the business of the day - The Rideout. The big 'let's make smoke and noise and plenty of it'. Remarkably most people managed the 10am prompt call from Sergeant Major Sybil. "We are leaving on the dot", said Sybil. Well by 10.30 ish engines were started and the blue oil smoke and fumes
were dispersing. However before that event photographs were taken and up stepped Fred Woodgate to deliver a truly Churchillian speech "Ladies and Gentlemen today most of us will return, some may not". Not too much faith in old Indians then! I was OK by mount was a Matchless Special. Anyway he then
proceeded to explain how not to get lost. After the third time of telling he looked at the uncomprehending, blank faces and concluded with the advice the "simply follow the bugger in front". We had to do that anyway because only the 'b****r' in front had any idea of where we were going. Route cards, maps, instructions? Oh my goodness no, we are after all, Indian Riders!

But I digress. Off we all went down the long drive with Dave........proudly sporting the W**kers medal for his sporting efforts at hooking himself up with the fishing tackle designed to catch trout from the stream. Who had the last laugh there? The road leading up and through the Preseli Hills was a delight with, as
they say, views to die for. Then on to Scolton Manor to park up the bikes on the forecourt. What a sight!

Lunch was taken at another charming spot, Canaston Bridge. A place where time slipped by slowly helped by the delicious home made ploughman's presented by the landlady. Then a leisurely ride back to base. Total mileage? Perhaps 75 and just right.

Line Up

Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales
Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales
Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales
Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales
Wales Wales Wales Wales    
Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales Wales

It doesn't matter how good the places, facilities, scenery etc., the basis of all get togethers is the people. Now I don't know or remember many names so here are just a few I came across. First there is 'Nobby' and we all now know he is 70, likes Indians, likes riding long distances and generally dashing about. Next
comes 'Snowy' all legs, arms, decorations and a thick west-country accent. Rides a huge black modern Indian motorsickle, which is loud and brash, also likes dashing about! Is there anyone now that doesn't know that 'Malc' (aka Duke) wrote the song 'Hey ... Rock and Roll' and played in a band called Shawody
something or other in the 70's. Also likes making noise with his friend Jezz. Tracey Bratby claims she still has one of his drumsticks from the good ol' days - more like a broomstick - ooops duck. You may have met 'Jeff' real name Graham, from up the North East. He came all the way down to show us his
37/38 Chief, long hair and buckskin fringed riding outfit. The locals loved it. Been watching too many old films Graham? I wonder if the young chap riding the Gold Star has recovered the use of his wrists after suffering dropped bars for 4 hours! He is an aspiring 741 owner. Should somebody tell him!

Doesn't Sasha take good photos whilst riding pillion with the camera pointing backwards - female multi-tasking they call it. Too many others to mention and not enough space here.

The evening buffet was grand, another credit to the caterers. And, and, and I could go on but it's time to stop.

I personally enjoyed the company of each and everyone who went and look forward to the 'next time'.

Oh and did you know that that quiet chap Russell (from East Anglia) really does have a pet crow and cat living inside his house. Now fancy that!!


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