Keep Dry and Scooter on
While the boys of Erico were riding around Moab, I decided to embark on my own adventure..My first ever UK Scooter Rally! My friend Jen and I boarded a plane and headed to London. Finding scooters for hire on a Holiday weekend wasn’t easy but we eventually found two Honda PCX 125s available. Not quite my first choice in a scooter to ride, but at least we had two wheels to ride to the rally. I spotted a T100 out front of the store next to the scooter rental place in Chelsea, and discovered a great shop, Urban Riders. They even had magazines on the counter with Erico’s custom Triumph “The Deadline” on page two.
We packed up our camping gear, booze, and a few changes of clothes and headed East of London to the Isle of Sheppey. The event we were attending was the 9th Annual Sid James Scooter Club Carry on Regardless Rally. Jen was definitely more prepared than me, with a blue tooth helmet, GPS, and rain gear. Of course it was pouring rain, but that didn’t damper the great experience of riding on the ‘wrong side’ of the road and the thrill of lane splitting. Those little scoots got to 70mph and I only clipped a couple of mirrors! Jen had the brilliant idea of buying us yellow dish washing gloves to waterproof our hands so I wasn’t completely waterlogged.
This rally was small by European standards, with only 700 scooterists! Everyone was friendly and the scooters, mainly vintage Vespas and Lambrettas were great to look at. There were so many scooters I didn’t have time to see them all. The event had several great bands and DJs playing, awards, games, and a ride out to a local pub. I’m still trying to recall all the names of everyone I met. The campsite was next to the North Sea and for myself, born and raised in landlocked Colorado, it’s always wonderful to stare at the ocean when you can.
No scooter themed weekend would be complete without a ride down to Brighton to see the Quadrophenia Alley. Some of the roads in Southern England were the most breathtaking I’ve ever seen. Miles and miles of ivy and moss covered trees, lining the streets and enclosing the road like a green tunnel. Then amongst some mandatory touristy sight-seeing, we rode to the Lambretta store in Carnaby, and up to ACE Café. We ended the trip with front row at a Madness concert in Chelmsford.
Amazing whirlwind of a vacation. I hope to return someday to do it all again!