1ST Time Rally Goer LOVED it
just sitting here basking in the afterglow of a pretty doggone great First Rally. well first MOA International anyhoo. i figured i really had no excuse, being as it was held practically in my front yard... i'd actually set my sights on this as soon as the location was announced.
not too long ago, perusing the Rally Forum pages, it dawned on me that of course i HAD to volunteer. i have a history of doing so for other more local events and organizations in the Harrisburg area so i am hip to both the gratification one gets from lending help or expertise AND i know how hard it is to pull an event off -let alone one of this magnitude- without help and LOTS of it. first off i immediately volunteered for the position of Suds Slinger (heh heh) and then realised there was going to be high quality entertainment IE: bands- and i could lend a pro-level hand over there since i am a Stagehand by trade. not to mention that by volunteering i could come in early and have my pick of campsites. which WAS a bonus indeed, as i wound up under one of the three trees in the whole flippin place...
and then the fun did begin. i had nice neighbors, none of whom snored loudly but most of whom woke up way earlier than i like to... but we all had a great time camping together and of course talked about bikes and travel and all the other things one might chat with new friends about. i bumped into a few friends from around PA in camp so that was nice, too. we all had a big *hang* in the OktoberFest tent Friday Evening and enjoyed the German Dinner together along with the German BAND, who were an absolute riot. i know there was some measure of confusion over that and no wonder as i had heard all manner of rumour about it all week. all of which was dispelled when i actually went to buy my dinner ticket at the BMW Motorrad truck. i mean all ya gotta do is ASK (the right people)...
i did notice there were some folks wandering about with #1 buttons on the shirts, hats, etc. and when i finally asked about it, i was told "they are first-time rally goers." i had heard somewhere that there was perhaps a dinner or meet-n-greet thingy for these folks but i never followed up on that as i was plenty occupied doing whatever it was i was doing, pretty much the whole time.... but when i pressed my buddy about it, turns out they were making a special effort to welcome first-timers because some one had come to a rally and complained they DIDN'T MEET ANYONE! :hungover seriously?
anyway i had a really fab-u-tastic time in spite of the heat. Saturday afternoon, before i left, i went swimming in the nearby creek... YES! don't know quite how it took me so long to do that but boy when i finally did, it sure was great.
one of THE single most impressive things about the Rally? that they made such an effort to put coolers of water all over camp AND also staffed volunteers to drive around in golf carts GIVING water away to keep folks hydrated.
BMWMOA ROCKS. and that means YOU...and you, and you, and you over there....