Mike’s Drive-It Day by the sea involves a bag of chips and… Kenneth Williams?
My Drive-It Day adventures have varied, over the years, from the great (heading off in a sun-soaked two-MG convoy with my wife and son to a club event at a stately home), to the not-so great (taking off on my own on a cold, drizzly Sunday in search of a windmill – it’s a long story).
This year I drove the Midget to Hunstanton, Norfolk to scoff a bag of chips by the sea, something that’s been on my personal bucket list for the near-14 years that I’ve owned it (the Midget, that is, not Hunstanton). Don’t ask me why. Unlike my last Midgeteering foray into East Anglia – CCW’s group trip to California – this one stuck to fast, sweeping A-roads, with the occasional corner-cutting cross-country dash on unclassified roads lined with dazzling fields of fragrant oil-seed rape. And – also unlike the California trip – the weather was warm and sunny, so no need for a scarf and gloves this time.
My son was impressed with his first close encounter with Crosskeys Bridge in Sutton Bridge and wriggled excitedly in his seat whenever a classic car zoomed by in the opposite direction, usually with a flash of the lights, a honk of the horn and a cheery wave. He was particularly taken with a striking-looking three-wheeler with a familiar badge on its snout that we passed just outside Sandringham, and therefore rather miffed when I couldn’t immediately identify it. Later investigations revealed that it was, in fact, a Citroën 2CV-based Lomax.
Our luck held as we swept triumphantly into ‘Sunny Hunny’ an hour after leaving home – we found a seafront parking space at the first attempt and were sitting on the prom, nursing a couple of brews and gazing at jet-skiers hammering across the millpond sea minutes later. Rather disappointingly, we spotted no other classics in the town – I don’t count the bloke in a yellow TVR Cerbera showing off to his mates – so hit the road again for a gentle cruise through Old Hunstanton. A photo opportunity immediately presented itself in front of the 19th century lighthouse, which, to my eye, appears to have a comically shocked Kenneth Williams ‘oohmatron‘ expression on its face. That could just be me, though.
Having luxuriated in some more lazy seafront gazing, it was time to re-join the Midget and get ready for the sun-soaked run home, where it ticked itself cool with 90 more miles on the clock than when it started and half a tank of petrol still in reserve. More importantly, the old boy had behaved impeccably all day, often in sweltering conditions. As Drive-It Days go, this was one for the books.
The chips were delicious, by the way.
Le Caplain reckons Old Hunstanton’s lighthouse looks a bit like Kenneth Williams. Oh dear…
The Midget gets its first glimpse of the sea in more than a decade. It won’t be its last…