This past Saturday my wife and I attended the Maine Highland Games and Scottish Festival. First off I should mention that this is something that I have wanted to do for YEARS and for some reason never did. There is a lot of Scottish heritage in my family and is something I am very proud of. The colors of my kinsmen runs through my veins as much as the blood does. I also have a deep love of the general culture of all the british isles.
We got there as the gates opened and from the first moment, for the first time in what feels like my whole life, I found a place that I felt like I actually belonged. People there were so inviting and friendly that it really made me take a step back. Now you have to understand, I have lived in the same town my entire life, I know EVERYONE and EVERYTHING about EVERYONE and I dont feel like I belong here.
The day went perfectly walking from tent to tent, talking to all the different historical societies and the different clans that came to fly their colors and represent their families. Eventually we made our way down to the sports field and had a seat on the knoll to watch the competetitors go at it. As I watched them throwing the stone (the mideval version of shotput) and throwing the sheaf (tossing a hay bale) I realized how much fun it looked. Now dont get me wrong, these people are true athletes and train hard for these competitions, but it looked fun and I wanted to do it. I couldnt compete that day for obvious reasons but as we walked around the rest of the day I mentioned the idea to Heather and with her support I made the decision. Starting today I am going to be a Highland Games Competitor. I have months of training ahead which is kind of perfect since their season is drawing to an end but next August 21st, I will walk on to the Topsham Fair Grounds wearing my family's colors and compete as an amateur in the Scottish Heavy Events.
I am asking all of you, my friends and family to support me in this. I will need every bit of encouragement I can get. Some kind words as well as some screaming at me may be necessary cause the road will be rough and the training will be a death sentence endured but in the end I believe with all my heart it will be worth it.
I am hoping in time if I achieve any amount of success that maybe I can travel to different games across the country and maybe even one day compete in Scotland as an amateur. If anyone has any questions or wants to know anything about this, please, please feel free to ask...Ill do my best to answer anything.
As I was thinking about this today, which I admit, I did all day, I thought of this line to end this with.
There is a good chance I will fail, There is a better chance I will succeed, but this is the BEST chance I've ever had to be the man I have always wanted to be.