This year, the Volvo 480 club EUROPE wanted to try something different than the usual single-day meetings. Even though those meetings were a big success in the past we wanted our members from less central countries to have the opportunity to be present too. It was hard work planning and arranging everything: various tours for the different days had to be prepared, tips about accomodation sought out, lunch and dinner arranged. But it was all worth the effort!
We were pretty worried that the weather would spoil it all as lots of rain had been predicted for the weekend in the week before the meeting... But as we were travelling to the camp-site the sun was shining assuring us this would be a great weekend!
Friday evening it was time to gather outside Restaurant Lido. Slowly but surely the members that signed up for the meeting, most of them at least, showed up for the meeting! Finally together with others that don't start looking funny when you keep talking about 480 for more than ten minutes.
Even Darren came all the way from Scotland to join us for the meeting! He had only had his 480 for a few weeks and decided to travel to The Netherlands to see more 480 owners, a real fan that makes you!
Also Belgian members were present, it was fun to see cars from different nationalities together! At the end of the evening we all set out for the camp-site to join in the small pub present there, because no one would have to restrain himself from drinking afterwards. It was a pleasant evening together!
Saturday morning we all gathered at the parking near Restaurant Lido again. More Belgian and Dutch members turned up for the biggest day of the meeting. Even Ted Sertons was present with his old 480. The police hadn't payed attention when accelerating at the traffic lights and as Ted was braking they bumped into the rear of the car. Because the chassis was twisted the car was now a total-loss. Ted had taken the car to the meeting so everyone who needed spares was able to remove them at a friendly price.
When everyone arrived we set out for another parking area where a test had to be made. The tour for the Saturday started here and everyone had to drive his 480 over a tough track we set out. Along the way a tennisball had to be picked up and placed somewhere else. Some members drove it like their lives were at stake!
After this test the real tour started. Everyone was handed a copy of the route and sent away. The tour led through beautiful pieces of the Dutch province Flevoland. This province used to be sea but was surrounded by dykes and pumped dry. This all happened halfway the 20th century. Lots of windmills for electric power have been built here. After a long drive we arrived at Lelystad Airport where we all had lunch. A good lunch even, a nice cup of fresh made soup, a croquette sandwich and a ham and cheese tosti. From the restaurant you had a great view over the airport. A Dutch airplane museum is being built here and ancient planes like the Uiver were displayed.
The rest of the tour led us to the AAP-foundation. This foundation cares for monkeys that have been smuggled into The Netherlands and are later abandoned. Everyone had the opportunity to eat some ice cream, a cup of coffee or other refreshments. Outside everyone could walk past an isle where the monkeys were living.
After the AAP foundation the last part of the tour had to be driven. The weather was great and we had good hope the BBQ at the end would be in good weather. We were lucky! The sun was shining, practically no wind, just perfect! Plenty of meat and salads for everyone.
Sunday, the last day of the meeting. Some people who couldn't make it on saturday came for the meeting! Today would be a very simple day: just touring in a large group from Almere to Lelystad. Destination: the Batavia shopping outlet centre. At the start of the day a very special Volvo 480 was present: the US-edition! This car was build for the American market, it has liscences to use small US-plates, and has a complete beige leather interiour!
It was a great meeting! We hope everyone enjoyed it very much and hopefully we'll meet again on another Volvo 480 meeting!
DaniŽl, Bastiaan, Marcel & Ed
Volvo 480 club EUROPE
And many thanks to William Koekkoek for helping setting everything up!