One of the stereotypes of the British is our fascination (possibly obsession) with the weather. Most encounters start with "Turned out nice again". This can be either accurately or sarcastically used.
In this vein I had been checking the weather report the week before, which assured me the weather in London would be awful, except for the day of the event, which would be marvellous. The day before the event they revised it to the weather will be beautiful all week, except for the day of the event, when a biblical flood was forecast.
Must be nice to live in California, where only the occasional out of control forest fire or earthquake can spoil the fun :0)
Steve Payne had agreed to organise a Jensen Day at Ace Cafe, and was trying to get a good turn out. 20 owners had pledged their support, with others a "definitely maybe". Ace had agreed to hold spaces for Jensen owners until 6pm, after that it was open to the plebs in other marques.
So on the morning of the do I walked to my garage and looked to the heavens.
It wasn't looking great, but it was what we had to work with. I headed over towards Steve Payne's, and got stuck behind the biggest earth mover I have ever seen, which proceeded to shower my car with mud. Dirty beggar.
Part of the reason for going to Steve's was to get my new Sandon compressor gassed.
Steve has all the kit for doing it, and it's a quick job to do, so he got stuck in.
He then accused me of getting "bling" on him due to my new expansion tank, which I have had to install as I have fitted a 120A alternator, which was too big to accommodate the old one.
After cleaning the mud off my car, we headed off to Ace to get their early and get set up.
When we got their Chris Miller, who works in London, had already dropped his car off, and Mark Maniatt has also arrived extra early.
The special armed response police dropped in for lunch and a chat. British coppers are unarmed except for a wooden truncheon, so special armed units are called in if necessary. They had 9mm Glock pistols in holsters, and in the boot of the car MP5 machine guns, and 5.56mm assault rifles.
It's a sorry indictment of modern society that we have to have special armed police. What happened to the days of a clip around the ear?
We had made plans for lunch at the local IKEA for a change of scenery, and some of their famed Swedish meatballs.
The queue for the canteen was huge, and they must sell more food than furniture!
When we got back to Ace the full extent of the weather was revealed.
Luckily the inside of Ace was warm and dry.
Despite the weather the car park soon started to fill up with cars.
Alan Smith sorted some electrical gremlins on His CV8
And put up a sign hoping for a little luck :0)
My mate Adrian from work lives just around the corner from Ace, so he dropped in to say hello and buy me a coffee.
The highly modified Jensen 550 arrived and divided opinions.
Chris arrived after work in a whistle*, and we ordered dinner.
I went for the healthy option of chilli, cheese, an chips
With red sauce to liven it up a little
And Chris had the full fat all day breakfast.
To help work the calories off, we blagged the manager into letting us get on the roof for some pictures.
I took some snaps of the other marques that had arrived.
I took this one as I think it may answer a question Bob Adams asked.
One of may favourite cars arrived, and this one was in superb nick.
I'd love one of these. I would imagine it would be massive fun on a Sunday morning blast down country lanes.
Despite the bad weather, 29 Jensen's arrived, so breaking the previous record. It didn't even seem to spoil the day as everyone said how much they enjoyed it, so looking forward to next year, and another record if possible. Maybe 40 cars to celebrate the 40th JOC anniversary?
Just as I was getting ready to leave, a rainbow appeared, so a quick chorus of "Somewhere over the Rainbow" and I headed home.
* Rhyming slang: Whistle and Flute = Suit