We have spent the last three nights at the Peterborough Motorhome show with the Funsters (members of Motorhome Fun).
For the first two days the rain came down in stair rods and the ground beneath us took on the consistency of uncooked cake mixture. Each night as we came back to the van we felt certain that the rear offside wheel was sinking deeper into the mud and by the last night we were sleeping on a definite tilt.
The show was huge. Thousands of motorhomes for sale and thousands more camping. We climbed in and out of a few of the ones on sale but the state of our muddy shoes made us reticent to do that too often. I’d hate to be the people responsible for getting them back into showroom condition. There’s something great about looking at motorhomes that cost twice or three times what yours is worth and realising that you like your own the best. Some of the £100k A classes were very plush but they didn’t make us hanker for one. Just as well really…
We did of course spend some money and commit ourselves to spending some more. We bought – in no particular order:
- A dog bag for drying off Poppy the mud magnet
- A new leg for our table (That’s the third one we’ve bought now. It was yet another Goldilocks moment where the first was too short, the second too long and this one just right … I hope)
- A tripod that fits the single table leg so that we can use it outside
- Some washable mats for the motorhome floor
- Blue toilet fluid
- 12v light strips to replace our power hungry fluorescent lights
- A soldering iron and solder (see point above) Wheel covers for the trailer (AKA The Shed)
- Cable ties
And … wait for it … we committed ourselves to buying a satellite system from Eddie VanBitz to be fitted in August.
On the first night, sitting in the marquee drinking beer and chatting to a bunch of Funsters, Shirley was asked what we had bought. She reeled off a list of that day’s purchases and then asked her neighbour what he had bought. “Some cakes” was the reply. Did we overdo it? Probably but it was fun. I wish we’d bought cakes as well though.
Today we moved from the showground to Ferry Meadows Club site so that we can charge our batteries (the van’s and our own) and get ready for the Ladies Meet that begins tomorrow at Lyndon Top beside Rutland Water. Our friend Bridget is the other organiser (with yours truly) – she has come along too and is pitched up beside us as we speak.
Leaving the showground entailed a small drama with the main players being Shirley, trying to drive the van out of the mud, and a crowd of Funsters who appeared as if by magic out of nowhere and got behind the 3.8 tons of Holly to push her. I stood by watching the drama unfold. Shouts of “Keep going!” “No stop!” “Keep your wheels straight!” “Go! Go! Go!” and then a great roar of delight as the van and trailer sailed gracefully, if perhaps a little sideways, down the field and onto the road. The only small disappointment was when one of the lady bystanders suggested that it might work better if a man was driving it. We chose not to respond to that suggestion and just be grateful for the help and muscle power of the men and women who so generously helped us. One in particular springs to mind as he pushed from beside the cab and got liberally splattered in mud from the front wheel when it spun.
Arriving at the relative elegance of the Ferry Meadows Club site it hasn’t escaped our notice that all the other vans are shining white and ours is dappled with clods of mud. Club rules say you can’t wash your van on site so we’ll just have to put up with being the scruffs.
After a lovely rest on Sunday afternoon we set off towards the local pub restaurant for a meal. To say that the food was mediocre would be a kindness but the company was good and we were entertained by one of the waiters who took great delight in telling us that he was hugely over qualified for his job, being a ‘sports scientist’. The final word was spoken in the hushed and self important tones of one who hasn’t yet matured enough to realise that three ladies of a certain age won’t give a stuff as long as the food arrives quickly and is well cooked – it didn’t and it wasn’t.
So it’s now Monday and later this morning we will move the 20 or so miles to our home for the next 4 nights and the much-anticipated Lady Motorhomers’ Meet 2016. Follow the link for the blog of the Meet – it may take a few days to appear.