Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Sailing Camp

After our big sailing trip to Croatia this summer, Scott was thrilled to have a few budding sailors in our family. Christopher was invited to a sailing camp with a friend last week and he was very keen to go. James Hamilton Park is a local man made loch great facilities for learning many different water sports. The camp was all day for 4 days and he LOVED it.

I am a fair weather sailor but Christopher proved to his daddy that he can handle the worst of it. It rained and rained all week long! The water was freezing and the wind was whipping, but that didn't deter him! The instructor was very relaxed with this group of 8 newbies and allowed them to gather their own equipment from the shed as well as to put the boats together by themselves. I was amazed at the things these kiddos were able to do. On the last day, the weather was a bit better and the children were tested on some of their new skills. All week, Christopher had been telling me how much fun it was to capsize. He loved it and since they were in pairs, he thought there was nothing more fun than turning his boat over with his buddy. During the test, they had to capsize their boats all by themselves and then right side them. Despite being a feather weight, his practice payed off. He passed with flying colors.

Christopher had a ball and made a few new friends. Check out his smile! Looking forward to our next sailing adventure!

Perth Highland Games

Attending a Highland Games has been on our list since moving to this green place. We've just not fit it in until now. Throughout the summer, different villages and cities host a Traditional Scottish Highland Games Day. Each has their own flavor but most consist of the traditional kilted throwing sports, tug of war, highland dancing, running, cycling and piping.

We enjoyed the day relaxing at the Perth Highland Games, soaking up the sunshine and watching the friendly competitions. The caber toss was crazy. These guys pick up this pole and then have to throw it up in the air in an effort to spin it 180 degrees. The judges are not looking for distance, but for accuracy. If you picture a clock, the competitor stands at 6 o'clock and tries to throw the caber so that it turns end to end and lands at 12 o'clock. Very few managed the task. And then they throw lots of other heavy things. Some for distance, some for accuracy and some for both.

The highland dancing stage was just to the right of our seats. They dance a variety of dances, 10 or so on the stage, all to a piper. Let's just say that Lord of the Dance was not meant to be a 6 hour show. Also in the main arena are the running races, the cycling races and the tug of war. We all loved the tug of war. Especially the couple judging them. (check out the picture) And the cycling, around the grass track, with no brakes and no gears. Again, crazy. Most of these events are happening simultaneously.

Outside of the main arena were the solo piping competitions (the competitors just stand in front of one judge, piping away at one of 10 or so small tents) and the pipe band competition.

Scott and I enjoyed seeing all of the events and the boys did for a few hours, then they'd seen enough. Charlie and Christopher were able to run in their age races which was fun. And Christopher entertained himself by mastering tying his shoes! Yippee, yahoo!