First of all: apologies for being away all week. 'Tis the season to be jolly and all that kind of stuff. It is all the season in which to eat and drink too much and voluntarily embrace near penury. I am skint, as they say in this part of the world. Note to myself: definitely review your contribution to the commercialisation of Christmas next year.
That apart, we Scott's are all well and looking forward to the big day.
Now, today's photograph: that's Ben Williams, from Balemartine, here on the Isle of Tiree. You can probably guess that this picture wasn't taken on the island, though! Ben is cycling the length of Vietnam this Christmas to raise funds for Save The Children's work in the far east. Ben has a fascinating website, full of information, a great blog, a picture section, communications from friends all over the world and - perhaps most importantly - instructions on how to sponsor him or even make a one-off contribution. To find out more, CLICK HERE.
Now, do you remember a few weeks back I was telling you that I had been selected to take part in a health and fitness programme organised by the Doc and Will Wright? After I made that posting I then said that the Doc thought I was already too fit and wouldn't benefit from the training. Well, it seems that decision has been reversed. Me and another four people - of all ages and fitness levels - will embark on the great experiment in the New Year.
There isn't an over-arching goal. We all had to state what we wanted to get out of the programme. Me? Well, since stopping training after my running exploits I have been piling on the weight. Of course, a lot of that is down to the time of year and the limited light. But I could have overcome these obstacles easily with a bit of will power.
So, here are my goals: I want to lose weight - maybe about 20lbs - so that I can not only continue to run in 2007 but run competitively in my age group. I also want to have a crack at a couple of Mountain Bike Veterans' fun races. I know that if I can do this I will be a happy man.
The other folks taking part will have different goals according to their lifestyle aspirations.
What's interesting about all of this is that our base recordings will appear in the local paper, An Tirisdeach and our progress (or otherwise) reported on a regular basis.
The aim is, of course, to demonstrate to others that everyone can adopt a healthier lifestyle through regular exercise and a sensible diet.
Hopefully Will and the Doc will let me reproduce the articles here on the blog for the wider, worldwide audience.
And so to this week's exciting instalment from the archive of Isle of Tiree Online News. Quite by accident I came upon a page which was posted in October 2001 and mostly covers the visit to Tiree by my good friends the Robertson's, from Winnipeg. Also on this page are photographs from a few other regular contributors. The link is in the sidebar. Hope you enjoy another wee delve into the past.