Spar Cave - descent of the flowstone - Nigel
30th December 2013 to 2nd January 2014 - Sligachan Bunkhouse, Isle of Skye (New Year)
Two last Corbett completions, a table tennis championship, two huge meals, an impromptu group ping pong session in the lounge, a Hogmanay sing along, a quiz, seeing in a new year and oh a few hills as well. It's fair to say there was a lot going on in this meet!
Most folks arrived at the slig bunkhouse throughout the course of the evening having done various things on the way up, most notable being Sara and Pete who had a day on the forcan ridge in some soft snow conditions. After a bit of debate the nextmorning and having watched the rain blowing horizontally past the window Mike and Fiona decided there was no time like the present to jointly complete their round of corbetts by slogging up the screes of Glamaig with the rest of the club members, well except Anne and I who decided an ascent of Dun Caan on Raasay wouldn't be quite as gruelling. The descent of Glamaig down the screes was not something many had any plans to repeat any time soon, but were revived by vodka and mulled wine back at the bunkhouse. Congratulations from all at the club to Mike and Fiona for completing their round of corbetts.
That evening all hands helped out to prepare for the traditional Hogmanay meal, in the kitchen various soups, main course and puddings were concocted, vegetables peeled and boiled,the tables moved together and the feast began. As is always the case the food was fantastic, the main problem being to leave enough room for the various puddings and cheese. The quiz presided over by Mike soon followed, with all too predictably the team with Kenny in winning the honours. Later on as we all slumped in the chairs in the lounge Bruce broke out his guitar and with Alison W did a very good impression of Shane Macgowan and Kirsty McColl as they sang Fairytale of New York and a few others tunes. For the first time since I've been in the club everyone managed to stay up to see in the new year and for some this spilled over into a table tennis tournament, Claire having brought the bats and ping pong balls. The tables were set out, the net erected (2 maps of Skye placed horizontally and held together with forks, I kid you not!) and battle commenced. I lost to everyone while those with a misspent youth were clearly Claire, Harry and Ron. No surprises there then!
New Year's Day dawned dry and clear which meant everyone headed off to various hills across the Island, Ian, Claire and Katrina went off to Blaven, Ron, Mo, Fiona, Nigel, Sara, Pete went to visit Spar cave near Elgol, Bruce and Alison to Ben Tanavaig and the rest us went off to Marsco and it's fine ridge. It was a clear day, albeit windy but unlike the previous day the drying room was not in such high demand when we all returned. Another huge meal followed, I'm sure I had at least 3 puddings and then as we all sat in the lounge there was a sudden outbreak of ping pong. This started innocently enough with a ping pong ball being hit across the room between a couple of folk, then some more joined in and then some more until everyone was playing, using whatever they could find as a bat with the challenge to keep the ball alive as long as possible. The rather unconventional bats included Kenny's mini frying pan, the white paper on Scotland's future (no comment), a quality street lid and jar, a plate and various novels while Martins implement was being described as too floppy to be of any use (again no comment). At one point the ping pong ball landed in Bruce's glass of red wine, which he then promptly drank in one, with the ball still in the glass and then promptly restarted the game again by servingthe wine soaked ball with his book, dedicated to the cause. Incredibly this went on for the best part of an hour and was hilariously funny, to be fair you really had to be there.
After the exertions of the night before folks headed away from Skye the next day, some going to spar cave, some to Marsco, some to hone their table tennis skills and I went for a run up cow hill at fort bill on the way home. Thanks to everyone for providing the food and entertainment and making this a great meet. Here's to a great 2014 for everyone in the club.