I was, and still am, involved with the Scottish Power Kite Association. Since competing in the European Kite Buggy Championships in Benone, Northern Ireland, September 2005, the SPKA
have run an annual race series and sent various competitors to the international events over the years. Through this I've made a massive amount of fellow enthusiast friends in the kite buggy world. I used to compete both in our own series and most years at the internationals up until 1st April 2012 (April fools day) and yes, I was that fool! I got gallous and stayed with too big a kite for the conditions, got lofted out the buggy and the hard landing popped 3 ribs off of my sternum, I've only raced once since and that wasn't competitively by any manner.
2007 saw me with a brush with the big 'C', cancer, in the form of Penile cancer, to an extent I was lucky, the radical surgery that followed left me a much smaller 'man' than previously but that was it! after the surgery with both CT and MRI scans, no further trace of cancer was found in the rest of my body. To date still none! Despite a recent Colonoscopy following the bi annual excrement testing, that showed traces of blood, no issues were found in my bowel.
EDIT:- Radio 2 had an article on Penile Cancer on 14/10/16 a link for any guys to read Checkyourtackle
There have been more sites come to light in recent months, Orchid, Fighting Male Cancer
and a face book closed group, Penile Cancer Awareness and Support
. Through these groups a Penile Cancer Ribbon has been adopted from a design by John Francis Grasso. A face book profile picture frame is also available, search for 'Penile_Cancer_Awareness' to add it to your profile picture.
July 2015, my last surviving blood relative from the previous generation, my dad's sister, Aunt Enid, succumbed to old age at the age of 94! We've still to lay her to rest so to speak as she had opted to have her body donated for the furtherance of medical science. This is generally a two year exercise where her body is used to help the training of a dedicated group of future medical personnel, so next year, 2017, we'll finally get to inter her.
2016 Year to date ....
Ok main events:-
My Mother in Law, Pat Brand passed away in February at the age of 86. A sad time for all but a release at the same time as she was slowly succumbing to dementia. Her ashes were layed to rest along side those of my father in law, George who we lost a number of years ago.
April, made redundant, as my employer, who went into Administration a month previously was finally closed down by the Administrators.
June, after almost 67 years since its inception, we signed over the title of the Avon Valley Motor Cycle Club premises at 3 Dunlop St. Strathaven. The end of the club, with only a few members left, each one having dug deep in the pocket to cover ongoing repair costs and with the potential repair costs of the future, to have tried and maintained ownership of the premises would have been crippling. As per the constitution, all proceeds from the Clubs account after bills etc. were donated to the Erskine Hospital. We handed over a cheque for over £29,000.00, the Hospital, or as it is now, a home for veterans, are to buy a special Wheelchair Access Vehicle, this will be ready in January 2017 and the remaining last members have been asked to return and make a final presentation of the vehicle to Erskine.
October, although as a Club, the Avon Valley no longer exists, those of us left still meet, now at a house in Strathaven, on a Wednesday evening, as most of us have done for most of our lives. From one such meeting came the knowledge of the existence of an indoor Electric powered Bike Moto X track in East Kilbride, Hyper Trax
. Having visited a couple of times to watch, I was intending doing the same in mid-month to tie up with a couple of kite buggy mates who were heading over from the East coast for an evening session, having arrived and learning that it was a quiet Tuesday evening, I took the plunge and signed up for a session (2 x 10 minute stints on the track) along with Stu and Pete, great fun!, thoroughly enjoyed it even though my severe lack of fitness left me gasping for breath after both runs.
Trouble was that wasn't the end of it .... I Awoke on the Wednesday morning, sore thighs, rest of me not to bad.... I awoke on the Thursday morning Arggghhhhh! My thighs felt like two massive knots of muscle suspended from my torso! Sitting and rising from seats took a lot of arm work lowering and lifting as my legs just didn't want to respond. It was Sunday evening before I could say my legs felt like they were a part of me again.
November, the bike mates are heading down for another session at Hyper Trax this Wednesday coming, 16th, me, I'll be back watching again, as I've a buggy race event on the end of the week and can't afford to feel like a legless loon for two days while setting up courses for racing on the beach!
I'm still unemployed, well technically I'm not, as I'm no longer a statistic in the unemployment figures since the six months allocation of Job Seekers allowance ended. I've already amassed 45 years of NI contributions, with only requiring 35 years' worth, to be eligible for my old age pension (if it still exists) in under 5 years' time, there was no point in continuing to sign on every two weeks just to accrue my NI stamp. Therefore I signed off of the register.
More to follow...