: 2nd August 2002
Day 1: Friday, 19th August 2002
Everyone arrived at Stew's
around 17:30 on the balmy Friday afternoon; kit bags strewn across the
road behind the minibus Stew had finally managed to secure. The pain of
simply getting this far was enough for any sane man - this being the third
minibus he'd booked after being disappointed by the previous two.
.... Bags strewn everywhere, but someone must have inevitably forgotten something!
Looks like Gilles will be sleeping in his drysuit (although Nigel generously offered to share his bag - I think he was getting the French and sheep confused again??). One 14-seater minibus, minus two seats for extra luggage space, plus one half-size roof rack and 11 divers with all their kit... This wasn't going to be fun! Somehow everything got stowed away, including the divers - tightly packed in. Off we set at about 18:15, sun still shining and everyone still enthusiastic about the week's diving ahead. Ricks introduction to Barney "So you're the squaddie" earned a prompt response of "So that's how it's going to be you civvy b@$%#d!".
Six hours later, death by roadworks... Still only as far as Manchester and stuck in one big jam. It was here that the long, hard journey ahead of us sunk in; and it sank in hard. Packed like sardines, crawling along at an inch a minute, starved of oxygen, cramped, tired and gasping for a cigarette... This is what's called a club expedition.
After a bright idea from Donald, and one minor detour later, we were once again on the move... But precious time had still been sucked away from the schedule. Would we still make the 12 noon ferry from Scrabster? - and it was still many hours and many miles ahead of us.
|Friday||19th August 2002||The long drive ahead...|
|Saturday||20th August 2002||Finally arrive in the Orkneys & our welcome to "Shopping Week"|
|Sunday||21st August 2002||SMS Karlsruhe & Gobernador Bories|
|Monday||22nd August 2002||SMS Köln & Bottle Dive|
|Tuesday||23rd August 2002||SMS Markgraf & MV Radiation|
|Wednesday||24th August 2002||MV James Barrie, F2 and Barge - Party night !|
|Thursday||25th August 2002||SMS Brummer & V83|
|Friday||26th August 2002||SMS Dresden & Tabarka|
|Saturday||27th August 2002||The return trip South|
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