The Gentlemen's Ale Sampling Society
1982-2017 35 YEARS OF BEERS
ALLINGTON BELLE PADDLE BOAT
Tuesday 7th August
This was a pub meeting as is traditional in August. It is just that this pub floats!
August is normally reliable for two things:- the weather is good, and most GASS members miss this meeting due to holidays.
This year was an exception on both counts - firstly, the weather was shite, it pissed down all bloody night long, thank God the boat was covered!! Secondly, every single poxy member made it to the meeting - what is it with you guys and a boat, it draws you out like bees to a honey pot. In fact it statistically draws you all out more than naked women and a slap-up dinner! A boat, a few beers and a fish'n'chip supper and you lot are there like flies to ..... well a fly attracting thing.
Basically GASS could call it a day, invest in a small boat on the Medway and simply stock it with a few tinnies, then meet once a month on a Tuesday - job done. No more bloody organising, no more travel, what could be easier???
We duly chugged upstream for an hour through sheet lightning and a wall of water, we then turned round and were swept back down on what became increasingly like the Severn Bore, as millions of gallons of water poured into the river, aiding our passage. We dined on fish (appropriate) and chips and drank the boat dry. A good time was had by all. It would have been better if we could have seen the view through the windows, but we had a laugh.
The only shame was that apparently some of our members travelled to the meeting by powerboat and one of our number water skied all the way from the Medway Bridge virtually to the lock at The Malta at Allington and nobody on the boat took a frigging photo - what are you 3 megapixel camera phones for guys?????
If true, this is a feat that is at once skilful, brave, resourceful, and amazing, yet at the same time, daft, illegal, foolish, dangerous and likely to lose the boat driver his licence - so no real prizes for guessing who the skier was then H**h! The fact that you have be going about 20 knots plus to ski, and the speed limit along 95% of the route was a mere 5 knots is an indication of how off the wall this feat was! The added danger of trees floating 1" out of the water, encroaching dusk, anglers lining the banks with fishing lines with barbed hooks to go under, over or just plain through, it all just helps to set the picture of just how indredibly brave (for brave you can actually read deranged) you had to be to give this a go - but as we say in GASS -if it ain't dangerous it is not worth doing so well done H**h!!! Next time insist on a photo for the minutes.
A rare picture of our AGM organiser, who has bravely gone ahead to recce the whole route this time.