The Bash is a hot topic on the forum all year, with much discussion about where to go (we need a venue that's reachable by both northern and southern members, and there can be accusations of bias on both sides). By the time it actually comes around we're all anticipating it keenly.
I see some club members regularly, but others I only meet in person once or twice a year although I interact with them online almost daily. It's lovely to get together, have a rideout, enjoy dinner and booze, and celebrate our common love of maxiscooters.
My own maxiscooter, unfortunately, is in the shop at the moment, so I was forced to travel the 250 miles each way on my little commuter Vespa whose top speed is about 65mph downhill with a following wind. Spookily, exactly the same thing happened at the 2007 Bash, which was also in Wales.
To cap it all, the Vespa is suffering from a holed and noisy exhaust. It kept everyone amused with its tiny size and the Harleyesque roar when it started up, and was the subject of most of the weekend's jokes (the 2010 Bash was officially christened the 'Thunder In The Valleys Rally').
It did very well, though, keeping up through the twisty country lanes, the steep coastal hills and the ROAD CLOSED barrier we snuck through to reach the tea stop. We had a beautiful, sunlit ride, taking in several bays, two castles (Pembroke and Carew), the old brickworks at Porthgain, and Blackpool Bridge Mill for the all-important tea and cakes.
Some of us made a detour to visit the Pembroke Dock Sunderland Trust and learn about their efforts to raise a flying-boat which sank to the seabed one stormy night in 1940. They've got one engine so far.
Most of the forum members aren't people I'd have much in common with, or ever have met, if we didn't have scooters, yet over this weekend we get on like a house on fire and there are lots of hugs and kisses when we part on Sunday. We are a nice bunch - everyone says so, including us, and we should know.
Here is my bike (right) with some of its larger companions: