End of May.
Spring Bank Holiday.
Have I mentioned that I really don't like bank holidays?
This time around the Other Half was not working, instead he was off with his cycling gang, riding Hadrian's Way from west to east. So left to my own devices, I hatched a cunning plan of my own...bit of an accidental one actually due to an earlier postponement, but that is not the point! The point is this bank holiday I would be busy doing something. I would not be sitting about waitning, I would be out, doing!
And the thing I would be doing would be a beginner's archery course. Two days of aiming, firing* and mostly missing the target, with my two sons. Seems I may have found something we are all interested in.
The boys were a little bit better than me at hitting the target, surprising for a pair of nocturnal creatures, dragged from their pits for a 10 o'clock start at the weekend!
So after two days holed up in the Church Hall at Newbottle I now know how to string a recurve bow. How to notch the arrow, aim and release it. I know how to fit a sight to the bow and adjust it to allow for my weird vision. And I also now know that my youngest son can't close his left eye. He can close the right one, and he can close them both together, but he can't close the left one on it's own! And, I now know that I bruise very easily and spectacularlym that it is very important to keep your elbow tucked in and the importance of having the correct posture when shooting. You get the stance wrong and my word! you get bruises! You also get aching shoulders, and sore fingers -especially if you are shooting pretty much all day for two days! But hey, what's a little discomfort when you're having fun and learning new stuff!?
And we did have a load of fun! We met new people who are enthusiastic about their sport and new archers who were just as nervous as us at the start of it all. We learnt about friendly competitiveness and rivalry, and team work, and fun. There was also plenty of coffee available - thank goodness. Houghton Archers had all the essentials covered as far as I was concerned!
I may have have left a tad tired and a wee bit black and blue - but I had a brilliant bank holiday weekend. Roll on the next one - any suggstions for an August bank holiday activity?
Tonight, by the way, is our first visit to the archery club since the course. Lets see how much we remember...
*I'm told one doesn't fire arrows. One fires bullets, and shoots arrows. I am uncertain of the correct grammar...was I shooting arrows or shooting a bow? Is it the gun or the bullet that is fired? NOTE TO SELF: investigate this.