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Birthday Greetings from the Ottawa Valley

All of the Rovers present at the event. (And 
a hidden Land Crusier too!)

Wetting our Whistles!

With the Offroad Courses safely behind us it was time to continue the Party. . .

We still had some time before dinner so I headed back to my camp to wash the mud off. Al Richer stopped by and correctly set the timing on FINSUP. Then it was back to the B-day site for dinner at the trailer. I had brought along a bottle of Gosling's Black Seal rum and some of us were soon into the Dark'N'Stormy's. No lemons though, we were roughing it.

Dark 'N' Stormy

Pour 2 oz. of Gosling's Black Seal Rum® into an ice filled glass. Add Jamaican style ginger beer and garnish with a lemon wedge. Enjoy!
I couldn't find a correct recipe for mixing this drink anywhere on the web. Webtender claimed one should use ginger ale (totally wrong) while Toby Gibson's otherwise excellent ParrottHead Boatdrinks survival guide doesn't specify Gosling's Black Seal Rum® and states that this drink is popular around Trinidad and Tobago. While this is quite possibly true, Bermuda is this concoction's home port.

Dinner was served from the kitchen trailer. As I recall, it complemented the rum nicely. After dinner we sat around on the hillside talking and wandered about checking out Rovers. I broke out some cigars and fixed another Dark'n'Stormy.

This prepared us for the annual auction. Land-Rover vendors had donated goods to auction for the clubs benefit. Al Pilgrim served as auctioneer and the whole thing proceeded as smoothly as the Dark-n-Stormy contingent would allow. (The secret when bidding is to forget about trying to convert currency, just bid assuming you'll be paying U.S. Dollars and then enjoy the savings later!) Before all the items could be auctioned off however the event was postponed due to darkness. It seems that I really shouldn't have been able to buy a pair of recovery shackles for CA$20, but nobody further back could see them. It was decided to continue the auction after breakfast the next morning.

Some folks hung about the B-day site to help empty the Offroad Beer Cooler and a keg of Guiness. Unfortunately, the keg ran out of gas before all of the beer was gone. No problem, someone rigged an air compressor running off of the trailer battery and once again the brew flowed. There was some type of slide show but according to Jeff Meyer you couldn't see it through the clouds of mosquitos. I, along with several others, chose not to endure the bugs, preferring instead the fire waiting at Camp Penn . Unfortunately, Jon had broken a banjo string, so things were not as musical as they might have been. Still, we were treated to some great a capella music, including some original stuff by one of Russ' friends. Though we were as loud and boisterous as ever, the Rangers seemed to have given up. They only stopped by once to plead the case for the rest of the campers. Despite heavy rain, things proceeded into the wee hours. Russell Dushin arrived with another bottle of rum. Things began to take on a certain haziness. Eventually I decided that the rain wasn't going to stop, and made a dash for my tent.

Sunday morning was rain free. A change of plan this year. Sunday breakfast was served at Jim Barbary's rather than from the kitchen trailer. This worked very well and best of all nobody had to get up at the crack of dawn to start coffee and start scrambling eggs. After breakfast it was back to camp for Auction, part 2 with Spenny trying to fill Al's footsteps.

The Auctioneer's Aprentice Christine Rose, fearing for the solvency of the OVLR, watches in horror as Spenny auctions off another item for much less than expected. Last year this Rover BBQ Grille fetched $65 for the club treasury. Spenny couldn't even raise half that, despite its being well seasoned. Al, come back, we need you. Trailer needs new brakes!

After that some folks left while others of us headed off for a medium offroad along a powerline cut. When the course became impassable (unless you really wanted to do it with constant winching) we turned around and did the light offroad course in reverse. After that it was back to camp to shoot more breeze and eventually to go our separate ways. Eric, Jeff and I proceeded to plot our next move-camping and Rovering our way to the Downeast Rally the following weekend, but that's a story for another time. Another Birthday Party have come to a successful close. Mark your calenders now for sometime in June 1988 , come to Ottawa and help the OVLR celebrate it's 15th year.

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