I imagine that just like a good book or outstanding film, you just keep reliving the Hayride experience time and time again, a year just seems an impossibly long interval.
This year had an added bonus, I was able to meet many of the faces behind the blogs and having returned and looked at other blogs, I am able to put faces to the bikes!
I saw someone sitting quietly, sketching a flathead hiding in the shadows of a roadster hood beneath the bright sunlight.
This chap was Stefan Marjoram from http://stefanssketchblog.blogspot.com/. His work has inspired me to go and dig out the paints and pencils many times. Now here is the hard bit for me.... should I go along and say hello and introduce myself? After all we know each other through blog correspondence over the past year. But then again maybe I'll disturb him? Well the compromise is to go along, quickly say high and put a voice and a face to the blog and then insist that I go off and leave him in peace........only to miss seeing him for the rest of the weekend, so sorry Stefan (to make it worse Stefan said that he e.mailed me about meeting up, but I hadn't seen this because of the Modem failure)!
I also saw Roland from outta-contol.blogspot.com/ intoduced to me by the Quaffmeister himself from British Ironworks. We had a short chat and then went our separate ways for bleary eyed breakfast and coffee, but I couldn't help wishing I had arranged to meet up again before the weekend was over and have a proper chat, about both Roland and Quaffmasters fine workmanship.
Finally, there, behind a fantastically nostalgic Triumph sprint/dragster, was who only could be Pete Stansfield eattherichuk.blogspot.,
Again a quick handshake and introduction before doing my running off trick! Luckily for me tho, I did have the chance to return and chat to Pete for a bit longer, much to my benefit.
Why do I always do these short introductions and then exit promptly? I suppose I always think of the phrase "Better to be thought a fool than open my mouth and be known a fool". Anyway, I know it didn't do me much good as a jibbering teenage wreck meeting for the first time,the girl at school that I had admired for so long.
I met a Dutch /English family who use an Austin7 for daily transport along with a sprinkling of superbikes and practical bikes, the mum rides a Bimota and the young teenage son is building himself a seven special, fired by incredible infectious enthusiasm!
I saw the Stockers stockersspeedshop.co.uk/ from the sidelines, and smiled as I saw the projects that I felt I new so well, there for real.
I also met Ed the little dog, having seen him on You Tube, barking his way along a duel carriageway, thrusting forward, ears aloft against the slipstream, atop his Harley fuel tank, en route to a previous Hayride.
GKM magazine's greasykulture.blogspot.com/, Guy, is also a warm character full of the spirit of the lifestyle that the Hayride illustrates, leaving me with a feeling that this whole event is just like a big family, no pretences and no illusions, just be yourself.
So to all of those who might have thought me rude, please don't, shy perhaps, it really was such a privelidge to meet such creative and real people.