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Sunday, 31 August 2008


Just heard that "Strictly" is back on our screens. No one asked me if I wanted to be in it. Not fair. Oh well, I'll just have to carry on riding my motorbike.

No biking this weekend. Missed the Duff House 'do' 'cos a) the forecast was bad and b) the Moto GP was on, and I've missed the last two races. Go ROSSSSSSSI!!!!!

So I set about fixing the sound on my computer. It helped a little bit when I plugged the speakers into the right socket. In the process of doing so, I found the following items under the keyboard.

6 pens
1 pencil
2 rolls of sticky tape
1 spanner
3 cherry stones
2 date stones
3 peach stones
1 photo of ma wee doggy, Jen
1 memory card (wondered where that had got to)
1 tape measure
2 packs of ear plugs
1 clutch cable adjuster thingy
6 paper clips
a couple of bank statements and letters
1 bulb, possibly for the MZ headlamp
1 pair of pliers
feeler gauge/s
RAC card from work - handy, probably be handier if it was in the car though
My watch
and an Aberdeen street map.
1 rocker box gasket (Cubbie's I think)

What did you find on your desk? Come on, I want to know. Drop me a line and tell me.

After that I starting compiling a Cubbie's Counties video - its looking good people! Got some cracking backing music and loads of super pics - Darrell, if you liked the pics in CBG you'll love this. Guess I'd better hurry up and finish the counties before I get too carried away with half a video.

Major bikey event next Sunday though....getting Cubbie all polished for the Motorcycle Convention at Alford....oohhh...wonder if we'll win a prize....hahaha....I think not!

PS WELL DONE TO JOHN and his Black Flag Racing team (most of whom can be found at for their win at Cadwell, and for clinching the Senior Endurance 600cc National Championship 2008 - with two rounds to spare. That'll be champers all round then.

Monday, 25 August 2008

Er, golly gosh, goodness me

Just checked the Paypal thingie...not looked for a few days....heaps of donations have appeared!! Will tot it all up in a bit.... WOW, thanks guys, thats another £60 through the DONATE button taking us up to £1361.39!!!

Shed saga to come too.....

Oops, forgot, left the bath running, better go....

Ok, where to start. Decided to head over to Aviemore on Saturday to see - or rather hear the Harleys who were there for their annual rally, Thunder in the Glens. Up early, 7am would you believe, things to do ya know, sheep to check, dogs to walk and so on. Mrs BC and I had a lovely drive out to Huntly, up to Dufftown, across to Grantown on Spey and finally down to Aviemore. Nice at this time of year with the harvest in full flow and bright sunshine. Had arranged to meet Shorty for lunch, finally found him and Westie and Mrs Westie - they'd been slightly held up by heavy traffic on the A9 and only just made it for the start of the Harley ride out. At 12 o'clock, a nice policeman stopped the traffic on the main street through the village, the piper began to play and they all set off north to Grantown. The noise is horrendous (in a good way) and the different sites are amazing with all kinds of customised bikes and trikes taking the first corner with aplomb, lights flashing and horns and sirens blaring. One thing that we both noticed was that there seemed to be a large proportion of lady riders there, and dogs, mostly in sidecars. The dogs, I mean. I only saw three officers of the law all day, two of whom were pedalling up and down on push bikes - do they really think the Harley boys and girls go that slow?? Well the one we followed on the way over did. After lunch we had a wander round the stalls, loads of skull and crossbones tee shirts, bandannas and so on for sale, along with tents full of sew-on patches for the rufty tufty biker. Saw an MZ in the parking area, wonder who that belonged to - come on, own up, who was it?

Sunday. Caught up with some strimming in the morning, then made a stupid decision after lunch to do another section of the shed floor. From that moment on, everything went wrong. By the time I'd been to my own private beach (half way up the drive) to collect a van full of sandy ballast, hooked the mixer up, found the shovel, remembered what mix I was using, shifted the mixer closer to where I would be pouring it....and got the first load underway, it was half past three. My cunning plan to have the mixer on the edge of the bit that needed filling was to do away with having to use the wheel barrow, which Mrs BC had full of potatoes. After pouring two very wet loads I realised that plan wasn't going to work so well. It would mean pouring all the loads in the same spot, then shovelling them to where they had to go. No go. Empty the barrow, pump the tyre up, find a plank of wood to span the void and get going again. I dunno what went wrong. Couldn't get the consistency right, too dry and crumbly or too sloppy and ploppy. By supper time I hadn't even done half of it, and the most stupid thing of all was that I had done bits round the edges and not in the middle, so it was back out after my roast chicken and home grown veg to do some more....light was failing by then, as was I....too huge amounts of point carrying on....whinge whinge......wasn't going to get it finished, so had to leave it. Covered it up just as the rain came on. Monday morning....7am...was that rain I could hear? Nah....just the leaves rustling against the window....yawn....considered getting up but to be honest, couldn't move even if I wanted to. Gave it half an hour, still no rain, drat. Had to get up and get out there to finish it off before work. My timing is impeccable, just finished and placed the first sheet of tin over it when the rain came down. Well it looks awful and will probably crack and split and so on but I can always patch it up.

Did a bit of investigative work on Cubbie yesterday. Finally picked the new battery up from Dingbro in Aberdeen. What a place, phones ringing non-stop, wouldn't want to work there. It looks, er, huge, I hope it fits! The nice man there insisted on filling it with acid for me too, so I guess theres no taking it back if it doesn't fit, I expect thats why he did it. Also I'll need to change the connectors on the bike from spades to things that can be bolted on. Oh good, another session with a sharp knife and ever shortening bits of wire. Before doing that however, I decided it would be a good plan to try and find out why the main fuse blew. And if the charging system was working. But the second part of the plan was too complicated, didn't understand a word the manual said about it, so thought I'd fire Cubbie up, just to see if the old battery held a charge. Well it had been sitting in the steading for about a week after I'd last charged it, and sticking the multimeter on it recorded 6.something volts. Odd. John with the Morgan had reported it dropped down to 4 after he charged it. Hooked it up, stuck the meter on it again and peeped the horn. Why does the voltage rise when I do that? Anyway, my cobbled together fuse started to smoke when I fired the bike up, so thought I'd better not do that again. Time to investigate why. Took the battery box off and had a look at the bundle of wires that lurk behind it. Already had to patch one up last time the fuse kept blowing. Cleaned all the oil off, then spotted a bare bit of wire. Cleaned it up good and proper and wrapped it in tape. Small insulating tape to hand.....ah well, just use Duct tape, will that work? Hmm, don't know, wait and see. (Phew, just heard from my tame electericaral person that he uses Duct tape cos it sticks better then insulating tape). Then spotted another wire in need of attention. And another. Crikey, time for a new loom me thinks! Hopefully one of these was the culprit and when I get a proper fuse I'll be able to try it out. No idea what to do about the battery, it seemed to hold 6volts after that start, but on returning home from the National the other week, one start was enough to drain it completely.

Weather forecast is good for the weekend....supposed to be heading south to conquer some counties.....better get a fuse today and get those terminals swapped....oh a heap of envelopes to stuff this morning....for the road safety run entry forms ya want one?

Oh yeah, did I mention I managed to walk into the cement mixer and nearly poke my eye out?

Thursday, 21 August 2008

The weekend is OFF.

That's it. Its official. This weekend is cancelled. I was planning to head south to conquer at least 4 of the most logistically difficult counties, but reckon I'd better spend some time checking Cubbies charging system. There is a new battery awaiting collection, thanks to Kawa for sorting that out. Just need to find Dingbro. Might nip over to Aviemore to Thunder in the Glens or perhaps venture along to the Lonach highland games and see if Billy Connolly would like to sponsor me. Ha ha.

Oh yeah, spose I'd better try and catch up with the mowing....strimming....shed building....sheep catching.....and all that jazz.

Plans for our Road Safety Run are going well. When I say 'our', I do of course mean the North East Scottish section of the Vintage Motorcycle club. Just about ready to send entry forms out and order all the bits and pieces from head office. The lunch stop has a great menu on offer for you and the sunshine is booked. No really, it is, we have first dibs on it for Sunday 5th October.

And as if that wasn't enough, we've decided to hold a midweek event next August to slot in between the S&T and the National. Plenty time to worry about that though!

Thanks to everyone who has been sending me money, I keep meaning to email you two ladies who PayPal'd but but but but - I've got no excuse really, so THANKS!! We've broken the £1300 barrier....only £700 to go....

Have a nice weekend, don't walk under any ladders.

Friday, 15 August 2008

Blairgowrie here we come

Look out, Cubbie's heading to Blairgowrie for the weekend....................................

.................................coooeeeee I'm back........yeah ok I guess you've all heard by now if you've read the comments on this post...............I'm awa' to recover then update later............

................right, I'm on the mend now, physically if not emotionally. It all started mid week last week when Nutty wasn't well. It wasn't something we could pinpoint, she was just behaving in a slightly different manner to the rest of the ewes and lambs. These cases are always a tough call, and not helped by me preparing to be away for the weekend. If we'd left her she might have picked up, but then again over the weekend, she might have got worse. So we caught her and her lambs and gave her a jab of penicillin, assuming that after the very heavy and prolonged rain of the previous few days, she had a touch of pneumonia. Wonder of wonders she was greatly improved the next day. So Friday arrived, and plan A was that I would go to work in the morning in Huntly, in the van with everything packed, then I could head south straight after work. Just as I was leaving the house, the phone rang and my appointment cancelled, so then I had all the time in the world. Which made me late! Had to nip into Turriff to pick up my newly engraved trophy that I won at last years National - for being young and glamorous. Left home about 3pm, didn't get to and through Aberdeen until 5.40. What took me so long? Well, seeing as you ask, there was a cloudburst at Fyvie, couldn't see the end of the bonnet let alone the road, then got stuck behind a combine harvester and two grain trucks, with heavy rain dinging doon and up off the road, making passing impossible. Although there were still some idiots driving with no lights on and overtaking about 10 vehicles when surely they couldn't see the other idiots coming the other way with no lights on. Then popped into Asda to fuel up, none of the pay at the pump facilities were working and the attendant couldn't fix them, so on to the next garage where the queue was backing out on to the main road. Oh yeah, it was rush hour by then too. Seemed to make good time trundling down the A90 and arrived in Blairgowrie just after 7pm, to be greeted by the skies opening again. Silly me, I thought Shorty was going to share his umbrella with me but he hogged it all to himself. Pah! Saw that Captain Bill was there, and Andrew Rae's tent was pitched already, so hurried along and got mine set up just in time to head to the rugby club house for stovies and chat. Had to take a piccy of KC's (one of Shorty's friends) Moto Guzzi after he landed on the grass - thanks to Westie for notifying me. Had a great evening catching up, not to mention, a bit of winding up too.

Saturday...ooooh...the day of reckoning...up early, got Cubbie out and fired up first kick. Had a 10.22am start time for the run, no problems, I can do that. Seemed to get slightly held up by people wanting to talk to me - think that was a set up so that I would be late setting off. Then met a guy waiting by Cubbie who asked if I ever had any bother starting it....well not until now...! Got going, whizzed across the START line and we were off. Route map taped on the tank, waterproofs on but no rain yet. All the lights in the village were green, a good sign, until I got to the first lot of roadworks which held me up for a few mins. Gradually got warmer and still no sign of rain, thought I was doing well averaging my nominated 30mph (using my speed, distance, time calculation I learnt at school) then kept being held up by lines of bikes toddling along, ho hum, bike still running well, me rather on the warm side but determined not to lose more time by stopping to strip off. All of a sudden, round a corner and up a hill Cubbie began to misfire. The best plan seemed to be to keep going and see if it cleared, which it seemed to, but after that there seemed to be a lot of hills. Cubbie began to run worse and misfired more often, so much so that I had to stop. Thought it was just the mushroom slipping again - sorry, that's the distributor thingy for all you technical folk, so was about to have a fiddle with it, when another Cub rider pulled up beside us. He kindly set about tightening the distributor clamp so that it gripped a bit better, fired the bike up and we all set off. Thought it seemed a little better but then it started losing power again. The other Cub guy and his pal zoomed off into the distance so I stopped again to fiddle with the mushroom, still thinking it must have moved. After several attempts at this (thanks to VMCC Immediate Past President Harry Wiles & his good lady Fran, for stopping and also to the big Triumph rider who followed me for a while to make sure I was ok) things just got worse and the top speed was about 20mph, downhill. All of a sudden Cubbie gave one almighty pop and then died. Pulled in to a convenient lay-by to investigate. Motor seemed overly warm, as was I, first things first, get those bloomin' winter waterproofs off! Checked a few things, main fuse had blown, asked the builders over the road if they happened to have a 15amp blade fuse going spare....nope...then who to my wondering eyes should appear (that's a mis-quote from "T'was the night before Christmas", in case you didn't know) but Short Stan. Oh great. Thats just fantabbydastic. There I am, winding him up something rotten by posting a pic of him pushing his bike last weekend and now here I am broken down by the roadside. And mine seems terminal. Well he just fell about laughing, could hardly stand up for giggling, poor old chap. To be fair, he did offer a spare fuse from his car but they were the wrong kind. Got rid of him quite quickly as he was on marshal duty then proceeded to 'mend' the fuse with a bit of fuse wire Captain Bill had given me a while ago - for just such an occasion. Feeling quite chuffed with myself I popped the fuse back in and kicked. Still no go. Ah, check the lights. What lights? Gone, nothing, not even a glimmer. Battery was as dead as a dead thing. Asked the builders across the road if they by any chance had a 6v charger on them....nope...asked at the 3 houses near by but no luck there either. So my fate was to sit and wait for the breakdown crew. They turned up about an hour later, and drove straight by. My frantic waving must have just caught their attention as Westie came hurtling back on his BMW - yeah, he had a right old laugh too but zoomed off and returned with the breakdown boys. Loaded it onto the trailer, along with Rod's Royal Enfield and travelled the last mile or two to the lunch stop IN A CAR. HUMBUG. And it was all going soooooo well!

Lunch was at Glamis, most people had been and gone by then, apart from another NE Scottish VMCC member, Tony on his Norton. He'd suffered a bit of confusion in the morning by going to Crieff instead of Blairgowrie, so decided to pop along to the lunch stop to meet and chat. He very kindly offered his pillion seat for the afternoon stint back to the campsite. Made a change, GBC on a Norton, whatever next. Had a good run back, wasn't far and we only missed one turning, got held up by a numpty farmer who had parked his tractor in the middle of the road and seemed oblivious to the growing line of traffic waiting to pass. It was Tony's idea to stick Cubbie's number on his Norton, so apologies to the checkpoint guys we passed...we thought you were waving us on to go faster. Back at the campsite you wouldn't believe how many cameras came from nowhere to photograph Cubbie being pushed back to the tent. :-( Still, after standing a while it fired up. Thanks to John with the Morgan for taking the battery home with him to charge up for the next day, and ta to Tones for the lift, but please, can you hurry up and get some glasses?

Oh sorry, got to go to work now....finish it off later....cancel that, change of plan......

So Saturday evening I was running around trying to interview people and get plenty of photos for Classic Bike Guide, spotted a bright yellow plastic rocket bike parked up amongst the Brit bikes, someone was being a bit cheeky I reckon. Met a couple of potential new members for our section, then the owner of the yellow bike returned, insisted on having a pic taken with Cubbie next to his bike - now theres a man with taste. Time then to get ready for the Wrath of Shorty - all down to the hotel for a very pleasant evening meal, good company and a lotta laughs. Andrew Rae decided to chuck a tray full of pints of beer over his mate Nick, good job they've known each other for decades! Poor old KC (the guy who dropped his Guzzi) was presented with some pink sparkly stabilisers, Westie was mightily embarrassed when Stan told the story of Cubbie at Ingliston - apparently they had to queue up to remove the bikes from the show, and when my full name - Gorgeous Biker Chick - was read out, Westie wheeled Cubbie forward....much to the amusement of all the rufty tufty bikers there! Next up, Shorty presented me with a lovely personalised tee shirt after saying a few kind words about me. I do wish I wouldn't blush so much. Never mind, see the pic of it being modelled by my, er, short assistant. So I had been expecting something like that, something of great embarrassment, but what followed was a complete surprise. ***A cheque from Shorty's VMCC section - Central Scotland - for £100 towards Cubbie's Counties! Woooo thank you guys, that's most decent of you - and thanks to those of you from outwith the section who dipped yer paws in yer pockets and raised a few more quid in cash for me too. That takes the total to £1276.39.***

That's just about it, social run on Sunday which I didn't do - popped along to the Banchory vintage show instead on my way home. Congrats to Captain Bill and Mr Rae again for winning a few more pots between you - oh, did I forget to mention I won the Youngest Rider award again? Haha, its a cracking trophy, just the right size and shape for a drip tray for "TC".

Next up is a county bagging this space....

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Timmy "Twister" Hastings

Cor blimey, theres so much going on at the moment you'll have to be quick to keep up with the blog. A while ago, the Grampian Classic club had a talk from a young lad called Timmy Hastings. I'd heard of him through one of the web forums I'm on,, and persuaded him and his dad to come up and give us a talk. T'was most entertaining and the guys in the club said they'd like to sponsor him. Well in return for our donation, Timmy said he would display our logo on his bike - - - - - see the pic, people! Ain't that just great! I mean, The Twister is a real racer, fighting it out in the British GP125 championship, currently sitting in 3rd place...and...also in 1st place in the GP125 Academy Cup, and here he is, featuring our GCMCC logo! Hey, you might have seen him on TV too, he came 3rd at Knockhill last weekend and I think the race was on one of the many hundreds of Sky channels. Wanna know more about the little lad? Visit his website at

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Filming at Aberfoyle - the missing bits

Just heard back from the Beeb and have the go ahead to publish the full and gory details about the filming. So here it is.

Sunday....continued....So we arrived at about 2.30pm, plenty of time to get Cubbie and Vic’s Bantam off the trailer. With the niggling thought that Cubbie wouldn’t start earlier on, the first thing I did was try and fire it up. For some peculiar reason it caught first time and ran without any problems. Super duper. Got our period riding gear ready, me in my faded blue jeans, white tee shirt and rocker leather jacket, oh, and my rather stylish Davida open face lid, and Vic in his leather troos, Grampian Classic MCC tee shirt (good man, always willing to advertise the club) and some sort of tin hat and goggles. Luckily he took a few spare hats with him as some of the chaps turned up in modern full face lids, tsk tsk tsk boys, would have thought you’d have some old gear in the back of the shed?!! By the time we’d all assembled, Ceri from Twofour – the production company in charge of the filming, arrived, along with Simon Forster and his good lady wife whose name I didn’t get, and their rather swanky Bentley. Known affectionately as JDK, this is a 4 ½ litre Mk VI machine from the year of 1952, hence having to find bikes from the 50s and early 60s. Ceri went through the basics of what we would be doing and after a team chat we all kitted up ready to roll. The idea was when we got the signal, we’d fire the bikes up and await the arrival of the Bentley before setting off from the Brig O’ Turk tea room, south over the Duke’s Pass to Aberfoyle – being filmed from the chopper overhead. Sounds easy but keeping at a regular speed and not spreading out too much was a tad tricky. With 9 bikes to organise Ceri did a great job of placing us – the big black bikes (BSAs, Matchless, AJS, Cubbie…at the front) and the Bantam, Ariel, Franny B and the outfit at the tail end. So that was our stint for the Sunday, when we got to Aberfoyle we were off duty and most of us dived straight to the snack bar for ice creams and gallons of cold drinks. T’was slightly warm. Must have been around 6pm by then so Vic and I headed back to the tea room, loaded the bikes up and set off in search of a campsite that didn’t charge £18 per pitch per person per night. Someone at the shoot had mentioned one in Thornhill, just a few miles down the road. Found it ok and Vic stunned the poor lady in charge into giving us a really good rate - £17 total for 2 tents for 2 nights, including parking the car and trailer on site. I think it was the bit where he said he was a film star that did it… I’m counting that as a slightly unofficial Cubbies Counties Corporate Sponsorship. A rather long walk to the other end of the village rewarded us with a nice quiet pub; the Lion & Unicorn mentioned below, food was fab as was the friendly atmosphere. I’ve no idea what they put in the water to make me partake of zip slide activities in the middle of the night. So now you’re up to speed with Sunday….

And now we’re on track for Tuesday. Mind you, I should probably mention that I had to move my tent in the night to get away from the rumble in the jungle, while the man himself, Vic, had to up sticks early and sit in the car due to a small flood in his tent….aahh, there is justice in the world after all. So we packed up (no time for brekky again) and arrived on site for filming ‘take 2’. Rolled Cubbie off the trailer, reached for the key. Um. Bother. Now where did I put it? Searched all my pockets, bags, coats, shoes and boots. Not a key to be found anywhere. Had a vague memory of when I returned to the campsite the night before, taking my jacket off and slinging it over the bike, perhaps I’d put the key on it, along with my gloves and had dropped it into the long grass as I’d transferred it all to the tent. Not to worry, Vic lent me his Bantam key (gawd, I’m never going to hear the end of this one!) while he was able to operate the BSA ignition with a screwdriver. All the guys turned up as per the arrangement so we were able to keep the continuity going. Lots of activity going on in the tearoom as they filmed a bit in there, while we all got ready again. I believe one of our lot, who shall remain nameless (but let’s just say he was the Ariel rider) accidentally walked in on them mid shot! We met some other faces from Twofour, Zoe, Jonney the Producer, the Director, the cameraman and the sound guy. Really nice peeps who made sure we all knew what we had to do. Parked the bikes up outside the tea room, then Richard Wilson had a bit of a chat with each of us on camera, asking about the bikes and so on, followed by the guys getting close ups of the bikes – hope they didn’t look too closely at Cubbie! The day was a wee bit grey and chilly, but when you’re wearing such fashionable gear as we were, you don’t notice the cold, damp air when you’re at the top of Duke’s Pass. So we rode in the same formation to Aberfoyle, with the Bentley in the middle of us, being filmed as we went. I was, er, pretty peckish not having had any brekky so managed to find the time for a jumbo hot dog when we were hanging around the car park. Little did I realise we would have lunch when we got back to the tearoom! After a nice bit of grub it was time to do the last filming run over the Pass again. A short hop into this last stint we all rounded a tight left hand bend, with a road branching off to the right. As the front lot of bikes cleared it, a coach came the other way and cut the corner, meaning the Bentley had to drop back. Well chappie in the car waiting at the junction saw his opportunity and nipped out, ending up in between us and the Bentley. Bearing in mind they were trying to film us, they now had him on camera! Of course, we at the front didn’t know what had happened, I glanced behind and noticed that everyone else had disappeared, so signalled to the others to slow up. When we reached Aberfoyle for the umpteenth time it transpired that the Ariel rider – an ex copper had overtaken the Bentley and pulled the car driver in, informing him politely that we were filming and would he mind awfully just minding out of the way? Seemed to work and the crew we pleased with the footage that got. Hmmm…wonder if that bit will ever appear on the out-takes show! Our man with the sidecar had an onboard camera too – caught a sneaky glimpse of the footage, that’s gonna look brill! Finished about 3pm, I raced back to the campsite to hunt for Cubbie’s key. Started to rain. Then started to chuck it down. Then I got drenched. Didn’t find the key. Gave up and swam back to Vic and the car at the tea room, slightly crestfallen that I was going to have to buy a new key or make one from a Tuna tin or something. Decided to get changed out of my wet jeans, ‘cos although some people say that’s a rather attractive look, I personally didn’t fancy sitting in them all the way home. Would you believe it, I had to get changed in the bus stop! All in all, had a fun couple of days with the production team and Richard Wilson, ticked off another 4 counties and raised what might seem like a small sum of £38 but every little helps, and even losing my Cubbie Key didn’t cause too big a problem. Don’t know if I should tell you this….but….got home to Cubbieville, met Mrs BC at the end of our bumpy track, rolled the bike off and loaded all my gear in the van. Er, undid my helmet bag to remove my gloves from inside the lid, and er, well, found what appeared to be a key. Put it in the ignition, switched it on, gave it a good tickle, and…yep…you guessed it…not a Dickie bird. Nothing. Wouldn’t even attempt to cough. Must have been getting on for 9.30pm so gave up and Mrs BC towed us home – the last mile.

Look out for Britain’s Best Drives shown on channel (to be confirmed) at the end of the year. Will let you know, when I know.

Thanks to Jim & Joan Leddy for these pics.

Wet, wet, wet. Not the group, the S&T rally.

Blimey, its quiet around here. Where you all gone? Do me favour and leave a comment now and again, just to let me know I'm not talking to myself all the time.

Right, so you wanna hear about the S&T Regularity run at Crieff? Normally I go down on the Friday, the event is on Saturday, then Sunday is a social ride out which I miss 'cos I'm heading home by then. This year though I had to work on Friday (still making up for taking a week off to go to Scarborough), and the van was still in the garage for puncture repair and brake investigation work. Anticipated being home from work by 6pm, have tea, pack up and be away to Crieff by 7pm, a 3ish hour journey would see me there while there was still some daylight to pitch the tent by. Was almost on time, picked the van up from the garage on the way home, had tea, just had to pack a few clothes etc. Well 7 o'clock came and went, followed suspiciously quickly by 8, then I decided half 8 would be ok, then 9pm ticked by. At 9.37pm, Cubbie was secured in the van and I'd found all my camping stuff and set off. Well, was about to, but Ginger Geoffrey had decided to take up residence in the back of the van. He's only a cat, you may think, but trust me, you don't want the job of shifting him if he doesn't want to be shifted!

Poddled on down to Crieff, the brakes on the van were a bit better but still judder rather worryingly when applied. Arrived at the campsite at about half past midnight, stopped at the club house to use the loos but they were locked. Great! Saw a row of porta potty things on site, had to swing the lights round to be able to see.....sorry campers if I woke anyone doing that. Then had to swing them back round to get my bearings and choose a suitable place to pitch. Got out, had a listen, nope...must have been too close to a snorer, backed up and finally found somewhere a bit quieter. T'was a very lovely night by then but a little on the dark side, with just an array of twinkly stars to guide me. Was a rather chilly night, even with two bike jackets and a blanket draped over my sleeping bag I was still frozen. Then sometime in the early hours, silly lady walked her dog through the campsite, letting it bark and snarl at all the tents. Then...down came the rain. And it didn't let up all day. Cubbie started first kick. Andrew Rae, he of Ariel trials-ish sidecar fame had arrived, followed shortly by Short Stan and his mates (I think he has to pay them to call them that though, hahaha, ooops, duck!). Signed on, got wet, talked to loads of people, set off, got wetter, broke down, fixed it, got lost, arrived at lunch an hour early, managed to follow the exact route all the way back though. Got even more wet wandering around the campsite, chatted to more people, rain was lighter by then so able to write things down at last. Food was nice and healthy but the marquee got flooded (again). Ooohhh I nearly forgot, how exciting, I WON A TROPHY woooohooooo!!!!! Yes, someone has finally recognised that GBC should be awarded a prize simply for being young and beautiful. And I won a raffle prize tooooooo.....can't wait to get in the kitchen and start using my new Nigella Express COOKERY BOOK. Still, Mrs BC seemed to like it.

Sunday, Andrew Rae offered me the use of his little ring a ding ding MZ for the social ride. He's been trying to get me to ride it for years so I finally gave in. This was after he had fixed the clutch cable on his Ariel with one of my solderless nipples. Always handy to have, you never know when you might need one. He gave me the drill; bit of choke from cold, ignition on, big kick to start. Yup, seemed to work. No tick over though. Sun was shining by then so no need for the still damp waterproofs, although I took them with me, just in case. Right enough, had to stop a few miles into the ride to put them on. The MZ felt slightly unsafe at first, skinny tyres on very wet and slimy roads, dotted with fallen leaves. Then I got the hang of it as the roads dried out. My instructions were to keep it in the red zone, between about 3 - 6000rpm so I did. Hehehehe! What a hoot! Once we got to a bit of road I knew rather well -the one from Thornhill to Aberfoyle, dispatching a line or two of cruising classics was soooo easy and soooo fun. That little bike just revs and goes, up to 60mph in a trice and with a stonkingly good front brake, the speed was easy to scrub off too. Mind you, you don't want to use it too enthusiastically on a damp patch. Stopped in Aberfoyle to take a few photos of the guys I'd jus overtaken, then played catch up over the Duke's Pass. That part was slightly spoiled by a sudden and heavy shower, calling for a little more calm. But I still caught a Triumph and an Ariel. Twice. Time for lunch, then back to base to pack up and head home.

Hope you enjoyed that, still got the National to come next weekend. Shorty has threatened all kinds of revenge for what I've said about him on here over the last year, so think I'll have to give the evening meal a miss on Saturday!

BIG thanks to everyone who gave Cubbie's Counties a few quid on the weekend, you S&T guys raised just under £100!

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Cubbies Counties hits the jackpot!!!

Well I can't resist telling you this, even though it isn't quite in the bag....but the Grampian Classic MCC are making a club donation to CC which will apparently take me over the £1000 mark!!! I probably shouldn't have said it yet but am too excited to keep it to myself. On that subject, you may have noticed a sneaky little 'donation' button has appeared on here. This, believe it or not, is as a result of people actually asking me to add one so its easier to send money. If you click on it, it should open up a Paypal page where all you need to do is enter your details and then the payment is sent. Regret to say though that I can't take any more credit card payments, but bank and Paypal account transfers are fine. Go on.....could someone try it out....just to see if it works....please?

Had a cracking meeting at the club on Tuesday night....a visit to Peterhead fire station. We all thought it would be a bit boring but t'was far from it. Started with a video about accidents on the road (sorry, Road Traffic Collisions) and the various tasks they have, whether it be cutting people out or dealing with vehicle fires and that kind of thing. We were shown quite a few pics of gory accidents, which really does make you think. Stupidly, they're not allowed to show this stuff to the most 'at risk' group of teenage drivers (need I say boy racers?) because it might scare them. Hum-blimmin-bug. Why shouldn't they be scared? At least that way they might learn something. The general consensus in the room was that it should be compulsory for them to watch videos like this! After that we had a tour of the station, looking at the gear they have to wear, the neee-naaaws and all the equipment they carry. Each fire engine has a wet side and a dry side, ie hoses etc on the right and cutting tools and first aid stuff on the left. The cutting tools are rather hefty, I could only just lift one, never mind hold it above my head which is what they have to do. Of course, all the chaps could manage it easily..... The breathing gear is quite heavy too, this is needed for entering buildings and gives the fire fighter 33 minutes, I think he said the safe operating time is more like 22, then you know you need to get out. At the end we were taken round the block in the neee-naaaw in groups of 5 - only 5 seats plus the driver in each wagon. Was surprised to find out they are automatic these days, which the guys don't particularly like. The worst thing apparently is stopping these vehicles, so if you see one in your rear view mirror when you're waiting at a junction....prepare to get out the way! All in all it was a great evening out, organised by club member Phil from Buckie, so thanks for that Phil, and thanks to Kevin and Neil from the station - who were on call by the way so if the bell had sounded we would have been chucked out! Nice ride home in the dark on the old MZ Skorp, bit chilly though. Must be that time of year already.

Off out to the open air garage to get Cubbie ready for the S&T Regularity run this weekend....

Saturday, 2 August 2008

Part 2 of Counties 10 - 13

Haha, had a few requests for part 2....did I find the key? What happened at filming? How did it all go? Is Cubbie gonna be an international film star?

Well, I still can't tell you. Sorry. I know, but just be patient, all will be revealed! Gawd, now I've gone and done it eh. Anyway you can have another story while you wait. Got a phone call from the boss of Classic Dirt Bike while I was away asking for a 3 page feature (as opposed to a page 3 feature) about my Bultaco. Hmm, slight hitch there boss, it's still in a few pieces after Captain Bill completed the engine rebuild. Well crack on and put it back together, was the answer.

So I have.

More or less.

No major probs yet, apart from I can't find the front brake shoes.

And there was a cloud burst while I was merrily popping the engine in the frame which seemed to have shrunk.

Pics later, tea time now :-D


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