Josie had forecast warm sunny weather, so being the usual optimists Roy and I wore our winter coats and trousers, how wrong can you be?
Friday was a little misty when we left Telford on our route, carefully planned by Roy , which took us straight through the middle of Leicester, not to be recommended, so that we could meet up with the Northern travellers at March for lunch. By the time lunch came the weather was set fair with temperatures in the high 60’s.
Richard and Christine arrived about the same time as us, quickly followed by, Ian and Denise, Dennis and Christine (on their new black bike) Rob and Karen, Terry and Josie and Mike and Netty. We all piled into Tesco for lunch.
The route to the hotel took us across the flat Fens, with it’s wide twisty roads and deep water filled dykes. The wind was blowing straight across from the North Sea, making the bikes twitch, jackets to inflate and visors to rise up and glasses to whipped off noses, in fact a very interesting ride!!!. After another stop for afternoon tea ( we are so civilised!) we arrived at the hotel. Rodger and Edit (already sampling the swimming pool), Gren and Jan had also arrived. Later on the workers arrived, Rob and Colleen , Alan and Ann ,and Nigel and Sue, we were now all ready for the weekend.
The evening meal was served and everyone had a good catch up, some of us had not seen each other since last year???, where does the time go to? Where has 2013 gone?
Again the Sun was shining, Roy along with several others wished they had been wearing their airflow jackets!. The route to Wroxham took us through beautiful tranquil villages, all sporting their own individual village sign. There was a ferry crossing to navigate, we all paid the ferryman before he set off, in spite of the Chris De Burgh song saying ”don’t pay the ferryman till you get to the other side” but there were no mishaps and ferryman had a very profitable day with 12 bikes all paying their way.
Wroxham (or ROY town) was lovely, there were ducks, geese and swans on the wide broads, colourful boats navigating the waterways and the warm sun shining down on us. ROY town was full of shops called Roys which all belonged to a local family who were called Roy , they started trading in Wroxham from a hand cart many years ago and have now built up a small empire of shops across East Anglia. Roy got a bit confused and thought they were his shops, so he did not have to pay! Although Rodger also claimed the” Broad Hotel “was his? Dream on you two!
The route then took us off to Great Yarmouth, again the countryside was lovely, the area is definitely not flat and boring but there are a lot of tractors on the roads! At Great Yarmouth we all parked in the special Motorcycle only bay which Ian had organised for us (nothing left to chance) . We then split up to find the best fish and chips shops or in Roy and Denise’s case the “grabbers”. We are now the proud owners of a “dead” parrot, a monkey and a soft pineapple (the grandchildren will like them)
Great Yarmouth was at its best in the sun shine, horse carriages trotting up and down and the usual tourist train (which we did not have time to ride on). There were also some very honest people about as Nigel left his expensive sunglasses laying on his bike seat and they were still there when he went back. After lunch of fish and chips, a quick stroll down the prom, we were ready to mount the bikes and set off back to the hotel. Ian had mentioned some fords that we would need to go through, but they were no problem as the hot sunshine had dried up all the water, after a rather split up ride we all arrived back up the hotel ready for our evening meal, (well not really as we were still full from fish and chips!)
Mark and Pam had arrived by this time, they were in the car as Pam had been for some treatment on her knees, so biking was out of the question. It was great to see them, After dinner there was a quiz, which was won by Team Google (a hint in the name I think) made up of Rob, Colleen, Mike, Netty, Terry and Josie.
Again the sun was shining, Josie had really worked her magic. We said goodbye to Mark and Pam who were heading back home,(The delights of being self employed I guess), we would have said goodbye to Alan and Ann but they had not surfaced. The trip through Thetford Forest was beautiful, the trees donning their stunning autumnal colours of red, gold and green. The fields full of white geese, being fattened ready for Christmas! We swept down towards the Coast and passed through such places as Stiffkey and Cley next to the Sea. Cley was alive with walkers, who were making the best of the weather and walking along the beaches and across the winding paths through the marshes. The lunch stop was at Sheringham. Where some of us, decided on a steam train ride. Rob and Karen waved us off ( like a scene from Brief Encounter) they disappeared in the steam as the train pulled out of the station. Roy, Ian, Denise and I tucked into a picnic we had bought. Nigel said “I could do with a cake, where’s the buffet car?”
“Down the front of the train” replied Roy, mouth full of sandwich.
Off goes Nigel “Could not find the buffet car” Nigel states on his return
“You went the wrong way “ said Ian “ It’s at the back of the Train”
Off Nigel goes again, “I still can’t find the buffet car” he says when he gets back” where did you buy your picnic?”
“At the station buffet, before we got on the train” we all replied
Nigel, looked for help from Rodger, Edit, Gren and Jan, but only got wry smiles.
Soon the train was chugging down the coast with lovely views of the golf course and beaches, It stopped at Holt, where the engine was put to the back ready for the return journey. This time Nigel bought his snack on the station before getting on the train. The trip was not long but very enjoyable and some of the older members reminisced about riding on steam trains in their youth.
Back at Sheringham we met up with the non train travellers who had enjoyed a walk to the beach, ice cream etc. Back on the bikes again for the return trip to the hotel, we did hit a bit of football traffic in Norwich, but being on the bikes meant we could filter through and not be sat for ages.
TERRY AND JOSIE won the quiz that evening ( Terry wanted me to make a point of letting you all know they won) Josie was very impressed with their prize?? I will say no more!
It was a lovely weekend, all over too fast, great company, brilliant weather and some lovely roads and scenery, thanks once again to Ian and Denise for organising it and everyone else for making it such a great time.