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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Call Themselves Bikers?

Here they are - the lads. I don't quite recall, it's either their fifth or sixth annual visit now to Cassa Shrinky. That's Andy on the end, him with the beard, the one looking about to scratch something he truly ought not to, um, well certainly not on camera.. He's my best mate's big bruv', I've known him since forever (or it feels like it sometimes). You may recall him from one of my earlier posts, you know - the one where he left me stranded high and dry at Gatwick airport..? (Not that I bear grudges.) Hmph..


There are usually five of them, but this year Greg and his dad had to drop out, family stuff or something. The one taking the shot is Army Ken, a mutual friend of ours that I haven't seen in close to twenty years. Good old "Army Ken" - he earned that nickname due to the camouflage trousers he always wore, lord knows why. He was part of the crowd Little Ally and I used to hang out with down at our local watering hole. I had no idea he was visiting the island, but the lads met up with him and dragged him home for me. It's good to see he's finally lost the camouflage trousers (sadly, along with most of his hair). He's a bit camera shy, but he took the one above for us, complete with me in my fluffy slippers and all.. cringe.
Umm, think I'd better put a disclaimer in here - I don't actually drink beer (I'm a wine girl myself, honest Guv'). These were solely generated from the shed dwellers corner. One of several basket loads too, I might add. Do you think that's got any influence on how I was able to run them ragged, shooting hoops? (Big girls blouses, teehee I wasn't once the Captain of my school netball team for nothing, y'know.) Fact is, sad but true, the guys are just not as young and able as they used to be, bless 'em. Take the second night they arrived, they'd had a fine old time n'all what with watching all the bikes racing past the drive. Guess it was the combination of all that sun, beer and excitement that gradually took it's toll, necessitating a small shed siesta before their night out on the town. No good blaming Sam, it's part of his charm how easily he gets distracted. Anyways, of all people to ask to wake them up, you would think they might have at least had the good sense to choose someone who can read the hands of a clock. Not that it mattered much in the end, seeing as how he completely upped and forgot anyway. I honestly believed they were all out partying, it wasn't until the next day I learned they had slept like babes right through into the wee small hours of the morning. I would have tucked them up with a hot cup of cocoa had I known (giggle). They were out barbecuing their breakfast by 4.30am, by all accounts..
The lads have all packed up and gone now, but not before treating us out for a slap up meal. We ate at an Italian restaurant overlooking the prom, where we were able to watch all the stunt riders perform. The strip is sealed off at night, and we viewed from our window as a running commentary played out over the loudspeakers. Unfortunately I have a weakness for grilled sardines, and as everyone knows, using cutlery with them is a complete and utter waste of time - well, how on earth could you fillet out all the bones? Apparently, I reeked of sardines for the entire duration of the night, which may not have been TOO big of a problem had we not then moved straight on to the fair.. I usually don't often get to go on the scary rides, 'cos hubby is a-scared of heights and the kids normally refuse to be seen out with me. But the lads saw me proud - they took me up on each and every one of them, INCLUDING the bungee jump (whey-hey)! However, sealed in a small capsule within close proximity to someone reeking of fish really can stretch the limits of friendship ( so I'm told).
Here we are watching the bikes thunder by. This is the gatepost at the top of my drive, see that crack running down the middle? Nutty Nora reliably informs me that this is where one of the racers met a regrettable early end. Thankfully, that was well before our own time here - but I guess this vantage point does hold certain risks. The BBC cameras were filming opposite, this is a great place to watch all the wheelies fly past. I came up for a peek, but to be honest, if you've seen one race, you've just about seen them all as far as I'm concerned.
The lads usually camp out down in Matt's shed, with the girls Summer House given an airing for any extra overspill that happens along - not that we needed it this year. Here's a couple of interior shots of their living quarters - the kitchen area lies just beyond the bars at the back. NO idea how all those road signs and worklamps magically appeared. Matt says the fairies dragged them in, but he shouldn't talk about his friends in that manner..
Aside from coming up to the house to shower, they are pretty much self sufficient here - it may be pretty basic, but it does have Sky Sports on tap. There is a chronic shortage of accommodation on the island over the racing season. Calls go out over the local radio urging residents to let out any spare rooms they might have. It seems every field is turned over to a campsite for a couple of weeks, and the hotels are always fully booked out months before any arrivals pile across. I keep threatening to one day charge some rent (grin).











It's always a carnival environment over this period, lots of events and shows are laid on, beer tents and burger stalls spring up, and there is very little trouble overall. Last year "The Who", "Madness", and many other big acts came over to perform (most of whom I saw). This year we had another fine line up to choose from. It usually ends with a fly over from the Red Arrows across the Prom, or an acrobatic air-stunt - this year it was "Wing-Walking". To round everything off, a magnificent free fireworks display is set off over the bay, it is quite stunning ..

Mind you, when all is said and done, although I enjoy most of these festivities immensely, when it rolls round to the last race and all the banners and bunting start to look tired, I am usually more than happy to wave our boys and all of the hoopla off again for another year. There is something to be said about getting back to a little normality. The kids are now back at school, hubby is over in London for the week, and the tourists have all drifted away again. Shhhhhhhhhh. Can you hear it?

Peace.


58 comments:

Scott from Oregon said...

Sounds like the best of all worlds mixed in a bowl full of cashews, if you ask me...

CJ said...

This event looks like loads of fun. Bikes, beers, and bunjee - I'm in. Except for maybe the bunjee (and the sardines).

Les Becker said...

Next year, God willing, I will be esconced in a chair at the end of the drive with the lot of you. And there will be one more basket of empties for you to deal with. At LEAST one more.

You sissy wine-drinker, you.

CHEWY said...

Look at you... beating the boys at BBall. Bunjee jumping? Yikes! You Go Girl!

Oh, man, the least you could've done was ask Mr. Tattoo to take off his shirt. I'd like a better view of his body art. (giggle)

BRUNO said...

Well, you may shoot "hoops" like Shaq O'Neal---but thank God you don't LOOK like him, that's for sure!

A good backboard on that goal would help with the points, too!

Although admittedly, I wouldn't be watching to see if the BALL actually went in the net, anyway---too many "other" things to watch "in-motion"...!

SJ said...

Sounds like a fun time to visit craggy island.

Hope Ken found another pair of trousers :)

Alex L said...

Netball team captain hey... I was always wing attack/defense when we played at school. Boys on gils of course and gosh darn it if we didnt win every single time.

The Future Was Yesterday said...

I second Scott from Oregon! Should I live so long to be treated so cruelly!:)

Was that a natural southpaw I saw taking that BB ball shot?

"Apparently, I reeked of sardines for the entire duration of the night"
Oh Dear! We seem to share an addiction!...(: Anything fish will do fine for me, be it on crackers, baked, fried...if it's fish I'm game. My poor wife however, takes a very dim view of my breath odor in the car, thus mouth wash is a staple in our glove compartment, and I'm encouraged to use it before I get in the car - or walk home!

Mary said...

It does sound like a great time but I understand how pleasant the feeling of everyone leaving is. The tourist have all arrived here and it sometimes causes me to be hermit. I definitely avoid the grocery store on Saturdays. As I am currently tied up all week looks like...no groceries.

mrsnesbitt said...

We loved our stay, absolutely! Jon is still "glassy eyed" about the mountain. I have visions of him re-creating the image with his cornflakes, just as the goy did in Close Encounters! LOL!

I felt a week was OK and we were both ready to come home....where I viewed the surroundings with appreciation. As we live on the coast, in a rural area there were mant areas I identified with.
But there was a magic about it all.
Loved it.....apart from the meal from Hell! LOL!
We too had a great italian on the prom, possibly the same place.


Dxxx

CrazyCath said...

That sounds like a magical mayhem. Lots of fun and friends amongst the madness and inconvenience and noise.

A great post Shrinky, telling us loads about the TT I certainly didn't know.

Now, about those roadsigns and things... have you seen any lost tourists recently? You know, due to a lack of direction.... ;0)

pat houseworth said...

Working out and drinking beer, 2 of my favorite pastimes...but at my age, the former is becoming a past-time.

;)

Mushy said...

Seems we've all turned back to just writing about our daily adventures, but you really can't beat family life and all the love that surrounds you.

Thanks so much for sharing these shots and tidbits! I loved it.

Shrinky said...

It's a fun time, Scott.

Shrinky said...

cj, you big scardy-cat! Grin.

Shrinky said...

Hey les, the summer house is yours - just remember to bring your own chair, right? And as for the beer - have you seen the guts on these guys??

Shrinky said...

Chewy, Mr. tattoo man doesn't display his full body art for just anybody, y'know. As an aside, this guy has got the DEEPEST voice you'll have ever heard - it belongs on a Vincent Price movie.

Shrinky said...

Hi bruno

Backboards are illegal in netball, and this is a netball post. Maybe that's why the lads were so crap at it? Grin.

Shrinky said...

hi sj,

I'm both pleased and relieved to report Army Ken now sports old-man's trousers, you know - the kind that buckles just below the man-boobs..

Shrinky said...

Alex, wing-attack or centre were my favourite positions - ah, glory days!

Shrinky said...

Hi Dan, yeah, I'm a leftie (smile). Thanks for the tip, maybe a little breath spray would come in handy (tho' in this particular circumstance, fishy breath did have it's advantages..)

david mcmahon said...

Aye, lass, 'tis a good thing the lads didn't go wing-walking themselves!!

Shrinky said...

Mary, the one big minus of having the races is that all Tesco deliveries are cancelled, so I can't get my groceries on-line - and yes, the aisles in the supermarket are jam-packed with queues stretching for miles (groan). Have to confess, it drives me nuts.

Shrinky said...

Hi Denise,

So lovely to know you had an (almost) perfect visit. Hope to see you next year, huh?

Shrinky said...

Um, Cath, those fairies really create so much mischief and mayhem around here, you wouldn't believe it..

Shrinky said...

Pat, I can sympathise, I appear to be having the same problem.. grin.

Shrinky said...

Yeah mushy, nothing beats kicking back with family and friends (smile).

Shrinky said...

David, now wouldn't THAT have made an entertaining sight? teehee

K.C. said...

Wow, this looks like you guys actually have a great time together. Living a life that many people would dream of living. THe way you write is wonderful.

You seem to get along quite well, so i appreciate you allowing us to come along for the ride... Kayce

K.C. said...

LOVED the comments that you left for me. Also, noticed on your profile about doing your housework with your IPOD on... yeah, can't even begin to do so without mine?

So funny about you saying that you let your son put his songs on yours... They DO have good taste, don't they?

Yeah, we had good taste in our own day, but that new stuff... it ain't so bad, huh? (Can you believe we are old enough to even say that there is NEW stuff..:) Kayce

i beati said...

What great fun and another for the memory bank !!!!

Suldog said...

Can I get you to come across the pond and hit a shot or two for my Celtics?

Lots of empties there. Good. We should all do our part and get rid of beer. It's evil. We should drink it all up before it harms anyone else.

CHEWY said...

Congrats on POtD!
(mutter-mutter)

Shrinky said...

Hi KC, how lovely to see you in here (smile). Yes, there is still a lot of good music around, if you have an open ear to listen, isn't there?

Shrinky said...

Hi i beati, I keep meaning to tell you, it always makes me smile when I see your name - my maiden name was Beattie, and my brother is called Ian, the first time I saw you here, I wondered if he had taken to blogging!

Shrinky said...

Hey suldog, careful of what you wish for - I keep threatening to visit Massachusses (and even learn how to spell it too, one day)!

Shrinky said...

Chewy, (teehee) thank you for the sincere and heartfelt congratulations.. wink

B.T.Bear (esq.) said...

Hehehee Mummy haz fluffy slippers too!

I hav a speshol rekwest that I hope lots ov peepol reed-

Calamity Jane ( http://purple-lion.blogspot.com/ )
had a big operayshun yestaday, wen she had her kidney trarnsplarnt. If yu get a minit, wy not pop over to her blog an leev sum nose hugs? That way, wen she comes home an logs on, she will feel all huggd an it will mayke her smile!!

:@D

K.C. said...

Loved the comments you left for me. It is great what you said about CHOOSING to be unhappy. That is what it is. I still have to remember that in so many MOMENTS of the day.

Have a great one! Kayce

San said...

Your life is so exciting, Shrinky. I envy your athletic prowess and sense of adventure.

Enjoy your quiet time, hon. Build your strength for the next basketball game and bungee jump. Not to mention the next sardine-eating contest.

:-D

Helena said...

Shrinky!
Shrinky!
Have you seen this blog?

- http://isleofmanpics.blogspot.com/

Shrinky said...

Oh BT, thank you for this, I will, I promise. You are such a sweet and caring little bear - big hugs bonny lad. x

Shrinky said...

Hey san, thank you my friend, I have paused to catch my breath, just as well - you have NO idea of the what the next few weeks hold in store.. sigh. I'll keep you posted.

Shrinky said...

Helena, I want to come over and hug you, yes - wonder of wonders, a site very worth reading right here on my very own door step - wow!

Ellee Seymour said...

What a great crowd they sound, it sounds good fun to me.

david mcmahon said...

Like you said in your closing sentence, yes, I can hear the peace, Carol.

But I also want to know when your next post is going to appear.

No pressure ....

Shrinky said...

ellee, yes they are, and it was - still, I'm glad it is only once a year..

Shrinky said...

David, how come I had a feeling you might ask that? (grin) I have something in mind to post for tomorrow - I'm planning to do something today that I may wrap a post around.. wink

babooshka said...

Hiya,

Yes I'm the phantom Ramsey daily photo blogger. I haven't checked in to the The Purple Haze blog for a while. Just been poking around your blog. Nice to see another blogger on the island. Just doing bits and pieces about the vikings.

Mrs n. Is a huge fan Of the island isn't she.

John-Michael said...

The "fluffy slippers" are enough to have you restricted from ever using the word "Biker" in any form of written or spoken communication in the future. Ever! [smile]

Lovingly ...

CHEWY said...

time, time, time. (giggle)

Maalie said...

It looks as if you are having a pleasant time in Tailesscatland Shrinky!

Ak-Man said...

I wonder which of my friends I'll be happy to see in 20 years time? I also wonder which ones (if any) I'll never see again...

...hmmm...

...Not too surprised that you bungee jumped. You're 'that type' of person. Personally, no thank you.

CrazyCath said...

OK girl - has some taillesscat swallowed you? Hope you and yours are ok. Missing your posts....

Write soon. No pressure... but SOON!!!
Take care.

Casdok said...

Wow, sounds like great fun for you all! And yes i can hear the peace!

Catmoves said...

Um, Shrinky, I looked carefully at "Andy on the end" and decided that picture was taken after he did what cannot be shown. The smile gave it away.
Grilled sardines? Strange eating habits you have, girl. Put them on bread, crackers or something firm and have a sandwich. I can understand why they can't be handled with a knife and fork, though.
Sounds like you really had a ball.

Doug said...

Hi Carol,
Long time no visit from yours truly.
My blog has been renamed and updated.
Love the story...If my motorbike could drive across the ocean would have to visit some time.

Smiles,
Doug : )

Carlo said...

Good Job! :)