Thirteen long years ago, summer of 1996. Home from an Irish tour, gig free weekend, best buddy Mark n' me threw a few things in the band bus and headed to the Cotswolds. Prescott hillclimb. Pitched up atop an empty field and went to watch the Vintage Sports Car crowd throw vintage cars up the hill. The Orchard, Esses, the Circle and across the finish. Rained on the Saturday so we picked a dry bank at the Esses where I snapped off a roll or so of poor pictures on my OM10. Evening found us camped beside Dick Buckland and his Lomax driving friend. Dick was a huge influence when we were designing our Trifid - and he'd somehow managed to park up beside us.
Night fell. Laying in the pits between Bugattis, Bentleys, and wonderful vintage specials, listening to the sounds of a dixieland jazz band wafting down the hill from the evening entertainment. Bumped into James Diffey, wonderful bloke who'd befriended us at local trials. Now sadly left the planet and despite the fact our paths crossed seldom, the world notices the loss. Sunday sun brought 'god's beautiful people' out in ancient grand tourers. Champagne, crystal and cucumber sandwiches.
We vowed to make this our annual pilgrimage.
So. Thirteen long years. And we went back. Mark in his Standard 9 special - I took the Cee-dan packed for camping.
Cheese n' wine in the campsite. Stayed a week and travelled to the Forest of Dean, much of Gloucestershire, a few teary memories of a Cotswold holiday long past, and a torrential trip back. Loving it. How long to the next time, and how much water to pass beneath life's bridge - time only knows.