I’m not sure what the motivation was but I’ve started running training again. With the help of the Strava app I’ve built up from 3k a day to 5k with some 10 k runs as well. There’s even been a few intervals sessions which brought back a few memories. So far, I haven’t fallen apart and have enjoyed runs at Taynish 5k and Westport Beach 10k. There is even a once a month 5k type Parkrun at Barnluasgan (Beaver Land) courtesy of Jog Scotland.
The Fynesiders had a 21st Anniversary gathering at the Portsonachan Hotel on the banks of Loch Awe. There wasn’t much to report on the singing front but people enjoyed themselves and the surroundings.
Sadly, not long afterwards, Neil MacDonald, the Fynesiders’ Musical Director died suddenly just after a Thursday night practice. The Fynesiders have got some changes to make because we relied heavily upon Neil’s expertise and patience. I have volunteered to learn some baritone parts to get us back up to two baritones. So far, it’s been a bit patchy but hopefully things will improve.
While John was off jollying at Portsonachan, I was sitting my final theory and practical exams for the Qigong Teachers Association UK course that has been occupying me for the last two years. I’ve loved my trips to Samye Ling and will miss them and the lovely people. (Sadly I heard just after Christmas that Bex, who had been battling cancer, died early in January.)
Fortunately I passed the exam as the following week I ran my first workshop, an Introductory Course, with one of the other tutors who came down from Mull. We had quite a variety of people, some interested in taiji, some already with knowledge of complementary disciplines like yoga and reiki, some looking for stress relief. It seemed to go well.
This was followed by the Tarbert Book Festival. We had a varied programme of interesting speakers, but were disappointed with the attendance. Thinking caps on for next year.
Another trip to Chesterfield just before Christmas was needed to attend brother-in-law, Nicholas’s funeral. His condition had been deteriorating but he suddenly got much worse and Kathleen says she was relieved that he passed away peacefully when he did. Again, there was a silver lining in that we met so many of their good friends and relations.
Back at Larick House, we spent a most pleasant Christmas with Emily, Richard and Caitlin. All the more surprising because we thought that Emily and Richard had assumed the mantle of Christmas Day Hosts. Maybe the fact that Emily and Richard are expecting another child in June might have had something to do with the (temporary) change of venue. Whatever, it was a very pleasant few days despite the procession of winter storms that have been causing havoc but fortunately not here. Here are a few more pictures of their visit.