Dinner Up The Dales by Gary Rhodes

It is all doom and gloom in the caving club world. For the sake of a couple of quid would you carry on using a blunt razor and keep on cutting your nose off! For those with sharp razors you need not read on as you were there. For the others – you missed out.

So  after the formality of the AGM which has left us with a few vacant places, an executive decision was made to go up the road to Austwick for a drink or two at the Game Cock. Abby here managed to bamboozle the happy family – Peter, Gen and little Dillon into a corner away from the rest of us grumpy old gits! However after the second or third pint John Rockett decided that Dillon would make better company than the rest of us. And so proceeded to entertain him with his guess which clear see-through glass the money is under!

The hours soon passed and the beer started to also. So onto the Dales Bridge we returned – in the camper-van of mine. A little on the full side. Standing room only. Thank goodness nobody wanted to use its loo! Others were met and the dinner was set!

The meal itself was a little limited in choice, but to be truthful it was actually one of the best ones ever in a very long time. Not quite sure what I had! but it was very good. Even though on first impressions it appeared to be a plateful of kitten vomit. I do hope that they had more than one kitten as it would be most cruel to produce so many plates from one small cat! The after dinner speech was at its best due to its absence. And no confusion shall be had next year over who has the trophies. Ian has them all! If this is the trend, I think I will introduce one myself. The Golden Wheelbarrow to take them home in! No, hold on, that’s not quite true! Harry Brisland won the Littondale Cup for all his years of fundraising and giving us the shits time and time again! Cheers Harry – you have proved the stupidity of human nature – we will go through anything as long as its FREE!!! The rest of the evening was well spent with the Grand White Rose Raffle. This must be one of the only raffles where you actually pay not to win! Cost me a bloody fortune to loose so many times (almost had a domestic here).

Afterwards when we were all truly bankrupt the squeeze made an appearance. Lynnette managed this one tit at a time. Many a helpful hand was offered but Caddy seemed a little reluctant to let this happen and no Abby, it doesn’t make your bum look big (note to myself – quit while you can!). Even John Rockett gave it a go. But the winner once again is Pete Whitaker (daft bugger)..had nothing better to do than crush himself between two lumps of wood. Not fair! I could have won but my willy got in the way. Maybe we should not have let Abby and Lynnette go through first! Think I needed more beer or a cold shower. Anyhow, it was a good time and everybody who was there had bloody good fun. And the next day even saw CAVING!!!

Laird Rhodes