Gaby Title.jpg
Part 14
Easter Break 2

"Drew I'm sorry but there was a problem at the bank"

My heart sank, I had really thought that Ally would sort the problem out this morning.

"Wouldn't they let you open an account?"

"Worse than that"

"What could be worse?"

Ally was obviously in a bit of a state, but I couldn't imagine why.

"Well I don't have the cheque either, they kept hold of it"

"Why?" I was a bit panicked now, I mean a hundred pounds is not a fortune but it's still worth having and to lose it, well I didn't want to lose it.

"I'd best tell you the whole story I guess. I went to the bank this morning and asked if I could cash the cheque. They asked a bunch of questions and I thought I had it sorted when another woman came in. any way she saw the name on the cheque then disappeared and came back with the paper."

Ally was nearly in tears now and I wasn't sure what to do.

"The woman said I had to have stolen the cheque, I clearly wasn't 'Gaby Thomas', because her picture was in the paper."

"Did they get the police or anything, what happened Ally?" I was getting hyper.

"Well I managed to convince them that I was your friend and that I said I would get the cheque cashed. Well I guess they sort of believed me, I mean I was getting really scared. Anyway they said that they wouldn't take it any further and they would give you the money if you went in with me yourself. Drew they kept the cheque and the only way we can get the money is if you dress up again!"

"I'm sorry you had to go through that Ally, I guess we'll have to meet with the others and discuss this."

"I told Mrs Jenkins, the lady at the bank that it might be a few days as you were going away for some of Easter break so we have a bit of time to get organised."

"Not much I guess, it's Wednesday today and I do go away on Thursday night."

"When do you get back?"

"Monday night I think"

"Well I guess we just plan on say next Tuesday or Wednesday"

"We're going to Meadowhall Wednesday, it'll have to be Tuesday I guess"

"Come on lets meet the rest of the guys"

Today we were going to hang at Rhod's place and I had a score to settle on his PS2. Well Rhod did have a copy of Chad so the first topic was again the Easter party. I looked at the picture that had caught Ally earlier, it was not particularly flattering, I mean what newspaper picture is, but I could see why it was obvious to the woman at the bank that Ally wasn't me. I didn't look like me as Drew (phew!) but Ally didn't look like me either. There were several pictures of the dance; I was even named as was Maddy. I don't even remember seeing a photographer!

Ally filled the rest in on the mornings adventure and I saw Rhod give me a look of sympathy. After all he wouldn't have to dress up again would he? As we had done it before, there wasn't so much planning to do and I even managed a go on the playstation before it was time to go home. 

I don't want to bore you all with my usually normal life so I'll skip to the interesting bits.

We were going down to the Isle of Wight for the Easter racing weekend, by travelling down Thursday night dad hoped to miss most of the good Friday traffic and anyway the first races were on Friday afternoon. Well it sort of worked; we caught the last ferry out of Southampton and eventually got parked up just outside Cowes shortly after midnight.

Friday morning it was a bit foggy and instead of Dads planned drive to the Needles we settled on a trip to Carisbrooke Castle in the middle of the island. I like castles and this one was no less exciting, I was intrigued by the donkey mill and by the end of our visit the weather was clearing up. Today's races were to be on a short circuit in Shanklin so we headed down to the coast to get ready.

Well I have to admit that the racing was hard and fast and at the end of things I was glad just to still be on two wheels! Mum mixed it with the best, gave as good as she got and was rewarded with third place in the mixed sex event. We all stayed to watch the category one event, I imagined myself cornering like those guys, sprinting out of the bends, hunching low over the bars on the descents. Well like I said before, some kids dream of being Beckham, me its another David, Millar.

On Saturday the racing moved to Ryde seafront where everyone got to race about three times during the day, boy was I whacked. However the flatter circuit suited me better and I got third in one race, sixth in another and fourteenth in the third, but not in that order. Mum was still impressive and in her two events she finished top six both times.

Sunday saw the main event, the Tour de Wight, a nearly eighty mile event around the island. It was all senior categories but by invitation only, mum had an invite after the New Forest weekend I told you about. There was only mum and Tina, the girl she beat that weekend in the lady category; the rest were nearly all category one and two men.

We watched the start but because of the course we decided not to try and watch out on the road and anyway I had another seafront race before the main event finished. I got fourth today in a hairy sprint, one of my fellow competitors crashed badly in the sprint after running into my back wheel. It shook me up I have to say but I was pretty made up getting in the prizes again.

Mum was expecting to get blown out by the men today, it would at worst make a good training run! So when the big race swept through the town before the finish, it wasn't just our family that were jumping up and down seeing mum with the main pack of twenty riders. A few minutes later and the mass of riders hurtled towards the line and although we didn't really expect to see mum at the front, it was deflating when we couldn't see her.

We quickly found her afterwards and it seemed everyone, the other riders included wanted to congratulate her on her ride. I recognised some of them from their pictures in Cycling Weekly; this was my mum they were congratulating! It took a while to get the full result and the full story. Mum placed tenth, a huge achievement at this level for anyone, after instigating the decisive breakaway and while not taking all her turns on the front, she did enough to earn respect. Enough that when she did get dropped on the climb out of Cowes just a few miles from the finish a couple of guys dropped back to get her back on the group.

The race really had taken its toll however and as soon as she could mum hit the sack. There was free entertainment at a local holiday camp that evening so me, dad and Jules went along and left mum to sleep it off.

There was no racing on Monday so dad finally took us sightseeing around the island, the Needles, Black Gang Chine, we looked at the bizarre coloured sands in the cliffs and whilst we didn't stop we saw Queen Victoria's house and the hovercraft that runs across to Portsmouth. Our ferry left just after two and we had a fairly hold up free ride back up to Nottinghamshire.

"What are you kids doing today?"

"I'm going out with Charlie and Anna"

"You going out with your friends Drew?"

"Yes mum, we're meeting at Maddy's"

"Well don't forget, you riding the ten over at Cuckney tonight, seven o'clock"

"Aren't you going mum?"

"I would love to but the Federation (Cycling Federation) have asked me to go over to Manchester today and I don't know what time I'll be back"

"If I take my kit, I can go straight from Maddy's as she lives closer"

"Is her mum okay with that?"

"Yeah we were all staying for tea any way"

"Well don't eat anything too greasy, you don't want cramps later"

"Come on mum, Mrs Peters hardly ever does burgers or stuff, its usually pasta or salad"

"Oh, don't forget this" she handed me a piece of printed paper, "you need the parental consent form to ride"

"Yes mum"

"And come straight home afterwards, it'll be dark about nine"

"Yes mum"

"Right then have a good day"

The excitement of the weekend had allowed me to quit thinking about today but now as I ride over to Maddy's house I got to thinking about it again. I was at least philosophical this time, it was positively my last time of dressing up, and we would be 100 better off!

Mrs Peters had a few errands to run, so my transformation into Gaby could take place unhindered. Well the girls in my absence had come up with a convincingly girlie outfit for the trip as Gaby Thomas to the bank. Maddy insisted that I practised signing 'my' name and after several attempts I got a passable signature complete with loops and bits - very girlie!

I once again had the long denim skirt I wore to Sheffield the other week but this time it was teamed with a yellow Betty Boo t-shirt. Bernie produced a black choker, the same as I had seen several girls wearing recently and Maddy supplied and fitted a pair of gold hoop earrings. With the long wig and makeup, I was once again Gaby. More confusingly I didn't seem to mind it so much this time, perhaps it was not showing any leg!

The girls all wore pretty casual stuff too and by ten thirty we were ready to leave for the bank.


Maddy Bell 19.02.03
Copyright 2003

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