Rally at the Edge
18th - 20th September 2012
It was Monday September 17th and around lunchtime, George Perrin, Son Kris and I had got back into Oban from the 4th White Tail Rally on Mull. We now had a 1540hrs sailing to Castlebay, Barra. Dave Wood was ill and had left Mull via the Fishnish and Corran Ferries for an early trip home.
After more fuel and supplies we boarded the Ferry and off we went. We arrived in Castlebay, in the dark around 2030hrs and made our way across the Causeway onto Vatersay.
With no pubs on Vatersay, the organisers had arranged a licence for The Community Centre and the campsite was virtually opposite with the beach just a stones throw away.
The hospitality was superb. Cheap beer, free tea and coffee and free soft drinks. We had the local band "The Vatersay Boys" playing. Not my cup of tea but tolerable. We were sat with Brian Weekes from Bristol whom we'd met at the White Tail on Mull. More beer and banter.
On the Wednesday we did a lap around Barra and took in the airport where the planes land on the beach at low tide. Jimmy Waugh from Tees Tornadoes was flying out to Glasgow; work commitments forced this action.
From here it was back to the site via the War Memorials and wreckage of the plane that crashed in 1944. That evening we had a bonfire on the beach and a barbeque. The organisers were bringing out seemingly endless supplies of burgers and sausages. Like I said, superb hospitality!!!
Originally on an 0700 (ish) sailing on the Friday we managed to switch to a Thursday sailing back to Oban at a more reasonable hour but this entailed a 2200 hrs arrival in Oban. Brian still had the original s**t Friday sailing but we managed to switch him onto our boat (Dave Wood's berth) and he also took Dave's place in the excellent bed and breakfast in Oban prior to our trip to The Squires Rally the next day.
This was an extremely small event and as such the camaraderie was superb. Instead of just speaking with the people you knew, everyone spoke to everyone. We are now heading for The Squires on the way home and our third Rally in ten days.
- Steve Giddens