Thursday, 31 March 2011
On Saturday last I went over to Harris to visit friends and attend the Community Land Conference hosted by The North Harris Trust www.north-harris.org on Tuesday and Wednesday. I took over 50 years to visit Harris for the first time but eventually made it 3 years ago on a John Muir Trust conservation (we call them work) party (that is more like it!) and have been going there ever since. The beautiful scenery is aided by the fact that a good mate (Cristina) moved to Abhain Suidhe, having met, fallen in love with and married Innes, the manager of the Castle. A welcome is always waiting and life at the Morrison's is full of excitement whether it be looking out for the elusive otter, eagle watching, puppy playing or rounding up the ducks. Lots of people stop by and their wee house which overlooks a sheltered bay is never empty. This weekend Iona (tea-maker and dish- washer extraordinaire) aged 9 was also visiting and when she heard I wanted to swim gamely chose to don wet suit and all. However we adults vetoed this as whilst the bay is sheltered the water depth is well over a 9 years old head and we didn't want to lose her!
Enough of that with many adverse comments about my mental health from onlookers and with Cristina (6 months pregnant) on camera and lifeguard duties I took to the water..... not quite like the ducks who had decided to stay onshore as the weather was turning a shade wet. I did intend to swim to a buoy about 50 meters out but I felt that it wouldn't be fair on Cristina if she had to rescue me ..... or truth be told it looked a lot further once I was in the water! However I did manage to swim front crawl breathing alternatively for about a few metres, overcoming my fear of sticcking my head in the water, not a problem in an indoor pool.
Cristina also captured some good pics so if SOS (bit of a worrying acronym in the circumstances) decide to do a feature on my swim we now have the requisite photos!
On Monday and Tuesday I managed to swim easily to the buoy and reckoned that in total in none session I covered about a 1/5 th the distance required for August. However the bay was very sheltered and I am very aware that swimming in the cold sea is so much more tiring than in a warm swimming pool so lots of work to do before August.
A word to my sponsors .. I have only enough to swim 30 metres of the 1100m swim. Come on the rest of yous. Next week I go on a John Muir Trust work (sorry, conservation) party to Knoydart. If I reach £100 in new
sponsorship before then I will swim from the long beach to the old pier, a distance of just under the 1000 m at high tide I reckon. It may take a while but it only takes a few minutes for you to sponsor me. See link to my sponsor site above. For more information about the John Muir Trust Conservation Activities check out the web site, again see the link at the top of this blog.
a great northern diver, a regular visitor.
Posted by Rohan at 10:02