Like Saturday afternoon, the day was really your own until that evening's barbecue. Russell was going home which meant not only did I have the room to myself that night but I could also remove the gallon of whisky from under lock and key! Newly weds Andy and Lorraine Buchanan were also homeward bound though, unlike Russell, did not pose such a strong threat to my race spoils. A few folk took a trip to one of the other beaches. I expressed an interest but alas, there were not enough seats in the cars. I wasn't too bothered though because I felt content to potter about in and around the cottages. A few of us watched the tail end of the men's marathon at the World Championships and I remembered that I hadn't replied to my friend who had texted the night before. The phone signal had disappeared on re-entering the village hall. I found the main square in Bowmore to be a telecommunications hotspot and managed to stand in the correct position for long enough to convey how the previous day and night had gone. Said friend, freshly back from a 5 day family break in Prague, seemed suitably impressed and wished me well for the rest of my stay.
The weather did indeed clear up and, while sipping a cup of tea in the kitchen with Billy Buchanan, Frances, Kenny and Eddie, they unhatched a plan, a la Mary Poppins, to "let's go fly a kite." The kite was in the style of a pirate ship. I accompanied them to the beach behind the cottages though left the kite flying strictly to the experts.
Above: kite flying on Bowmore beach. Left to right- Eddie, Frances, Kenny, Billy.
Meanwhile, I had my second self taught lesson in stone skimming. There's certainly a knack to it, one I struggled to discover. Eventually, about a dozen stones later, I managed to successfully skim one. It bounced back up off the sea surface once. A mini triumph! Remarkably I repeated the feat with another one before my luck ran out.
Above: a stone skimming practice session. Photo courtesy of Frances Ferguson.
Above: it's alright once you get in...sort of! My open water swimming debut. Photo courtesy of Frances Ferguson.
I emerged feeling extremely triumphant.
Above: post swim, feeling chuffed, and a little chilly.
The barbecue proved to be a successful affair and my compliments go to those responsible. As far as I'm aware, those co-ordinating operations were Jim Holmes, Eddie and Kenny. If I've missed anyone I apologise but if you were involved, consider yourself thanked as well.