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Phil A
Skate Report, Virgin Night 3 Apr 2002 After a 3 week break I was really looking forward to a skate and a Virgin Skate was just the thing for the worn out legs & lungs but tonights skate wasn't what we ordered.

It all started out well Bill & I thought we had made it in on time but we didn't count on David's punctuality. Off to the park next to the Art Gallery for a talk about City Skate and a brake test for those who need it. We spent a while here and then went to the Art Gallery steps for a photo opportunity. We took off for Hyde Park when one of our skaters said they noticed someone hanging around Bill's van. Bill took off to check while the rest of us continued towards Hyde Park.

I was called back to check my stuff as someone HAD broken into Bill's van by smashing the window and when we checked there were 2 other skaters cars that had suffered the same fate. This certainly put a damper on the mood of the evening and it seemed that Bill had escaped with nothing taken but the girls were not so lucky. Bags, money and passports all missing. After standing around for a while wondering what to do (and with no response from the local constabulary) it was time for those willing to continue on our skate. Feeling like I was deserting my mate I transferred my bag into another car and followed the crowd across to Hyde Park while searching the bushes nearby for any dumped bags. Those that stayed behind did a more detailed search and some bags & passports were found (even some bags of Bill's that he didn't realise were in his van).

By the time I caught up with the group they had already done a lap of both sides of the park and were on their way back to the City. Down Market St to Pitt St Mall where it seemed people were pushing well ahead of David. At the end of the Mall a few had to be called back as we decided a few back lanes were more adventurous than just going straight down the Street. A couple of back lanes and into Martin Place and up to the 3 sets of stairs (yes sorry Damian no nodding drunk tonight - oh how I wish now I have a camera!) where a "cheerful" girl pretended to skate around us in her high heels. Good look. Then a quick loop around the Cenotaph and down George St to the Angel Place lane. Not wanting to have many of our virgins crashing on the dark path we took the lane this time and ran into a whole pile of people standing in the middle of the road. I'm sure we gave them a bit of a fright.

We stopped a Aust Square for a catch up and while David couldn't entice anyone into a game of Conga Line we all enjoyed the great grinding display put on by the guys with the small wheels. Great to see you guys, hope you come on some more skates with us soon. Talking about catch ups we did seem to stand around quite a bit tonight so we must have been spread out a long way.

Off to Circular Quay where we were able to skate around the wharf front tonight as there were no gates blocking us at the ends. Along the wooden wharf and around under the bridge where those who wished were given the option of skating up to the top of the ski hill for a couple of runs. I managed to get 3 runs in before I realised I was well at the back of the pack. It all went very quick from here. Back around to the Quay and a stop at the Ship Inn for a thirst quenching drink.

All the interruptions must have taken their toll as there weren't many skaters left at the watering hole and it was much later than I thought. Many thanks to the offers and a lift back to my car parked at Bill's.

A word of warning to everyone.
Over the 10 years we have been skating in the City there have been a few occasions that skaters cars were broken into. It seems that most times a window has been broken and anything in view or reach taken. When you park it might be better if any bags are put in the boot or well out of sigh
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