Thursday, 26 September 2013

Rockhill Rendezvous 2013

This year our Airstreams ranged from a 1954 Globetrotter to a new 5 berth European International. It was Dolly, new to Rockhill, the Globetrotter that won this year's Open House, People's Favourite prize. The glass bauble is so sweet and delicate, and a tiny prize really, but it's just a little gesture, a bit of fun. I would expect that we each love our own Airstreams the best, but on the whole people don't vote for themselves (on the whole!!!). And our favourite vote slip this year said, "My favourite Airstream belongs to... everyone's)

Numbers were down this year, sadly. We had explanations and apologies from most absentees, and we missed them. As I'm sure I've said before, you get a growing core group of Airstream buddies who come to the gatherings, then we have newbies who join that core group, and some who try it once or twice before deciding it's just too much fun and we don't see them again. Some dip in now and then, some come to every meet. It's a very fluid sort of community. This year seven of the Airstreams were newbies, and they fitted right in. What a lovely sight, seeing new people being welcomed into the group. Not everyone finds it easy to break into an established crowd, and it's up to all of us to make the effort to help them feel a part of it as quickly as possible. This year I think that worked really well. Over time proper friendships get forged, and even future travel buddies hatch their plans.

Our trusty marquee came in very handy this year, with the weather trying, and failing, to spoil our fun. Actually, I think that contributed to us spending more time all together.

At this point I ought to mention the meeting that we had to discuss the future of UKAirstreamers. It was a good turnout. Pete and I had thought that we would be handing over the running of UKA, worried that there might be a perceived conflict of interest, now that we're servicing Airstreams. But the gathered Airstreamers let us know that they don't see a problem with that and they want us to continue. We really weren't expecting that, agreed to go away and think about how we can manage to do that, and the topic continues to be discussed for a limited time on the forum.

Anyway, that was just the serious, business end of the weekend. The rest was the usual abundance of warmth and enjoyment and beautiful countryside, topped off with those shiny Airstreams that are the random element that brings it and us all together.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Win an Airstream!

Open House at Rockhill Rendezvous is a couple of hours on the Saturday when everyone gets to mosey and nosey around each other's Airstreams and admire the ways they have been preserved, restored, upgraded and adorned.

Like everything at the Rendezvous it's just a bit of fun, and in that spirit we decided last year to present a tiny but perfect prize for the 'peoples favourite'. We couldn't think of anything more small yet perfectly formed than an Airstream bauble from Vintage Vacations. It is an exclusive and proper glass bauble, designed just for them. They have generously donated this year's prize, it arrived in the post today and it is up for grabs for whichever Airstream wins, for whatever reasons (we just count the votes!). 

Monday, 2 September 2013

Rendezvous Return

Is this our annual blog post? Well our travels may have slowed temporarily, but the Airstream Gatherings go on. And here we are again, preparing for another Rockhill Rendezvous. Another long weekend of great company, Airstreamy chat, shiny beasts, drinking, dancing, putting the world to right around a campfire, pampering, knitting, exchanging news and views on all things Airstream. Did I miss anything? Probably. There's a lot going on in our heads at the moment.

We were very fortunate to have a small but perfectly productive team of helpers with us this weekend, and we got the marquee up, plus most of the bunting and string lights. It's a great start and has given the preparations a real boost.

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Rockhill Rendezvous Countdown

We returned to Rockhill Farm almost two weeks ago, warmly welcomed and tucked into our freshly-mown little pitch. We had spent a couple of months here last year and it is really special to be back. The local village had asked to use our marquee for a bit of a do of their own, and part of the deal was that we would get some help with putting it up. And, although we felt a huge sense of achievement last year, having raised the beast with four young-ish adults, three boys and a grandad, it made a real difference having a few more grown men (and my best friend visiting from London) on the team. It was good to get it in place in good time too, because now that the weather is improving Carl should be combining during the next few days, and hoping to get it done before the Rendezvous.

removing rain water from the canvas
The weather has obviously been on everyone's mind this Summer, it being so wet and all. I must admit that it has bothered us a bit. So many events have been cancelled this year. But we made the most of a sunny weekend to get the tent up, this fine weekend has also given us a boost, and a whole bunch of Airstreamers are crossing their fingers and spreading optimism on the forum.
Starting to look like a marquee
It's up!
Pegging out
Rockhill Rendezvous is getting close and the excitement is growing. The village 'do' happened last night, and Pete and I attended. It was fun to see another crowd enjoying themselves in our marquee. We had a good evening too. Plus, the site looks so pretty at night with all the festoon and fairy lights. I started to imagine how thrilling it is going to be next weekend, to see it with thirty-plus Airstreams sitting there. So, as I write, we have four days to go, bookings are still coming in and we are currently expecting thirty-three aluminium beauties.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Prepped and Primed

The first UKAirstreamers Gathering of the year is just around the corner. We are having two this Spring, one in the South and one in the North. Even though lately our Airstream has become as much a home for us as a means to travel, it feels as though having a Spring Gathering is a good way to kick-start the dusting off, the airing out and the towing for anyone who hasn't ventured out yet. It's also a jolly good shindig.

So, this time next week we will be hitching up and heading to Dorset in time to greet the 18 (at last count) other trailers and motorhomes that will be rolling in. We are going to be on a camp site for this one, but it's an Airstream-friendly one with a separate rally field where we can be all Airstreamy together. Looking at the list, almost half of those coming will be vintage, and there are a couple of motorhomes too. It will be a lovely, varied selection for us all to feast our eyes upon. We are also expecting a few new faces, as well as some old stalwarts, and some who we haven't seen for a while. Should be quite a dynamic crowd.

The weather around here, and most of the country, has been tediously crappy in a grey and wet sort of way, so we'll need a lot of luck if we're going to pull off the al fresco bits of the weekend. We are bringing a cool shelter with us, and we have survived hoolies and hail storms at past Gatherings. It leaves you with a distinctive memory of the event, but sunshine makes it easier, naturally. So fingers crossed and good vibes all round!