Thursday 30 September 2010

10 Top days

Its normally only during winter that I find myself working 10 days straight but the last week and a half has been manic and great fun. 3 wet days walking and camping with Students from Lochaber College (spirits not dampened by the rain and keen to walk far and camp high), then 4 days in Assynt with pupils from The Glasgow Academy (cold on Lurgainn Edge, super day out paddling to and scrambling over Suilven, sunshine and blue skies climbing at Reiff and a quick route on Stac Pollaidh before dashing back to Glasgow to begin...), an evening and 2 days of SPA Training with a super keen team from Forth Valley College (most of this group have been climbing for only a short while and already everyone has led VS-E1, I was well impressed with this and their attitude to climbing as a whole) and finally today back with the second years from Lochaber College for another day's rock climbing. Today Mike and Sally followed me up a route at Kingussie Crag before launching their career as 'proper climbers' - each leading 3 routes. The crag was busy as Glenmore Lodge turned up part way through the day with a large MIA Training course but this just made the day more of a realistic learning experience as we negotiated and worked around each other. A bit of common sense, politeness and chat with other folks on the crag goes a long way at time like this and a flexible approach from all meant that everyone was always able to climb. I love watching people stepping forwards on the road to becoming independent climbers and both Sally and Mike were taking the climbing and the ropework easily in their stride today.
What a top spell of work.... what's next?!

Rock Climbing at Kingussie Crag from Alan Halewood on Vimeo.


Anonymous said...

How do you manage to find quality time for family with such a busy schedule?

Alan said...

Hi Anon, I have a very understanding wife! If she knows I have a busy spell coming up she often takes the opportunity to visit family whilst I'm away. Also a flexible child minder helps. Freelance work often comes in in blocks, or at short notice and is followed by a quiet period. So today and yesterday I was off and picked up my wee lad early from the childminder to throw stones into the canal, watch steam trains, go biking and pick brambles. In a week's time we are all off together on a climbing holiday with a big team of similar families.
Its definitely not a standard family life (other relatives consider us a bit odd) but Jane and I came into the business of starting a family with our eyes open and the attitude that we need to work at it. So far we seem to hit a good balance.