Sunday, 16 May 2010

Ready to Rally

Lots of Airstreaming news this week...

There is less than a week to go before the Spring Rally in Cheddar. Click here for details if you haven't booked yet, or to confirm your booking and let us know when you are arriving.

Having been in our bolthole in Somerset for almost six months we are gradually gearing ourselves up to moving on to the rally site. This has been the longest we have stayed in one place since starting our travels just over two years ago. Until now, the longest we spent in one place was three weeks. Most of the time we would book in for five nights initially, and if we liked the place, or needed more time to explore the area, we would extend our stay for another few days.

I'm sure our old routines for hitching up and pitching up will soon come flooding back. It's like riding a bike, right? At least this week we will only be moving within the county of Somerset, gently easing ourselves back into the nomadic life.

When you're moving regularly you are vigilant about not accumulating excess baggage. Now we are finding that we need to have a bit of a clear out. The discipline or ruthlessness has to be re-awoken so that we can ditch clothes we don't wear, guidebooks for places we won't be returning to anytime soon, crockery that doesn't get used enough. We've got to make allowance for our new fire pit anyway, getting its first trial by fire at the rally.

Last week we made the short trip to Taunton to see American Retro Caravans. Tucked away at the end of an uninspiring road in an industrial estate sits the little ARC workshop. And it was staggering to see what was going on there. They had four vintage trailers in various stages of restoration and a team of skilled tradesmen and craftsmen beavering away on each of them. Plumbers and electricians, carpenters and metal workers, carpet layers and polishers were all industriously working, occasionally on the same trailer at the same time.

Darren and Kathy, the owners of ARC, very kindly tore themselves away from looming deadlines to show us around. They specialise in high quality restorations, as you can tell from their (very attractive) website. They oversee every aspect, from the custom-built furniture (Darren is a carpenter by trade) to the hand-crafted upholstery. Beautiful.

The same day, this very blog received it's 15,000th hit. Staggering! When we started it, shortly after deciding to buy the Airstream, we thought it might get looked at a couple of times a month by our mums. We had no idea what it would grow into, or that we'd still be writing about Airstreaming two and a half years later. Thank you to everyone who has looked in on our journey.

Finally, we saw Airstreams on the tellybox last night. Tracey sums it up (much better than I could) in her blog.

See you at the Gathering (even if it rains!).

T & P

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