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Royal Deeside Run
Sun 18th May 2003
organised by Central Scotland

Car Count : 10
[ show pre-run info ]

Most people smile. They see a line of MX-5s heading towards them and they smile. You see it in pedestrians by the side of the road, in people talking to friends by their front gates and in cars heading the other way. Something about a line of these cars makes people happy.

10 cars met at Perth for the off, including some very welcome new faces, with one more car joining us on route. It was fewer than we?d hoped, but the early start, long route and less than favourable weather forecast probably did much to weaken the will to join us. Seasoned veterans of our runs will know that the weather forecast rarely applies to a run and so it was the case on this day. We very rarely have a top up run. We seem to have a sunbeam on us like a celestial spotlight for most of the journey.

This route is very nearly a superb run. Indeed two thirds of it is. The first third, however is rather dull, covering miles of dual carriageway and boring A road to reach the fun stuff. But, boy, is the fun stuff worth it. Small, twisty, but well maintained roads alongside the River Dee, heather clad moors above, (and quite often below), the odd hairpin and steep climb, past Balmoral and it?s hoards of visitors and onto to Scotland?s ski resorts. Whoever built Scotland?s Highland roads had a sense of humour. Most likely they just tarmac-ed over where the sheep had walked and called it a road, with the result that the blind crest of a hill is followed on the other side by a ninety degree bend on a steep drop. You?re on your toes even at 40 mph. There are special signs aimed at motorcyclists, too many of whom are killed or injured, caught out by these sudden changes in direction and altitude.

Lunch was at our old favourite, the Spittal of Glenshee Hotel. This is a superb place to feed and water, with a hot buffet and a simply fantastic trifle for seven quid a head, and would be first choice even if the surrounding area was stuffed with hotels. Lunchtime  conversation turned inevitably to the number of MG?s and Z3?s we?d seen with the top up, through  the my-car-is-a-better-colour-than-your-car, to the to the reaction of passers-by, especially kids, to the convoy. One member, fond, as we all are, of the colour of his car, said to the rest of us ?Some kids saw the cars and were waving. Then when they saw my car, they shouted ?Wow! Look at that car!???

We finished his story for him, laughing in unison: ??Isn?t it HORRIBLE?!?

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