Today’s Gallery Theme: ‘Groups and Gatherings’ (well, mostly):
Look at that. Blue sky, sun, guys at play in large numbers, keen to show off their abilities on the bars. At home in Tennessee today the sky will look like that with a top temperature around 22C (72F). Here in Wales, it will struggle to reach 8C (46F) and I’m gazing out of the window watching heavy rain going sideways past the house in a howling gale of wind. Hmmm. We have log fire blazing in one room and a stove going 24/7 in the kitchen. Cosy, I suppose, but not ideal.
Storm “Katie” is expected on Monday morning…!
The day started better. Dave and I rose spectacularly late – well, we’ve been apart all week! Leo and Jaymee nowhere to be seen and, inevitably, we found them across in the barn which we have fitted up (somewhat!) as a gym. They had warmed up, stretched each other and were just finishing off some of their balance-routine training before hitting the weights. Dave and I did pretty much the same, and soon all four of us were pretty sweaty despite the cool temperature, and the clothes came off (as they do). En Famille, Jaymee just does the same. Following her mother’s example being regarded as an ‘honorary boy’ in Chad’s private gym, and totally cool with Leo’s mates hanging around in our training cabin back in TN. All part of being a professional acrobat in a house full of them!
(An interesting composition with some cute guys)
Neil, the local lad who keeps the gym in shape for us and encourages his ‘Young Farmer’ friends to use it so we get some money, showed up, with a friend, a ‘regular’. He’d already issued the swimming-hole challenge: water temperature approx. 6C now (42F). ‘Better leave our clothes here – it’s raining outside now!‘ That meant a 100-yard dash, starkers (but there’s nobody to see within miles) and (bully for her) Jaymee the first one in, leaping up, tucking into a ball and landing with a resounding splash in the deepest part. Oh well, if she can do it… … …
Once in, of course, the rain becomes irrelevant. We do this in the Clinch River back home quite often, but Welsh water is somewhat cooler! We lasted about ten minutes, then warmed up with a dash back through the now heavier rain to dry ourselves off in the barn. Coffee round the Rayburn for all after, then Neil and his friend Osian (I love that Welsh name – it’s pronounced Osh-ee-an) back across to the gym for their regular workout. They’re both runners (marathons even) and have really tough, strong and sleek bodies, although both work on farms heaving hay bales around so need to be pretty strong anyway.
The forecast says ‘heavy showers’. Leo and Jaymee have decided to walk the local hills nonetheless, wearing enough to keep warm in the wind but not worrying about the rain too much. Dave and I are cooking! Our gay friends Tom and Iestyn from the village are coming up for dinner, so we’re turning our hand to something a bit special. It’s our one chance to have a quite evening with them around the fire – tomorrow Colin’s contingent from Oxford will arrive (accompanied of course by his wife Natasha who, we know, will want to take over the cooking – which is fine by us!) – then it will be three teen boys and two girls being wildly active around the place for four days, and probably four adults (all gymnasts or ex) training too, especially if we can’t get out and about thanks to the ‘Welsh sunshine’…
…evening sunshine on a beach… perfect! If only…
(Just how many coaches does he need? – And a photographer on each side!)
OK. we’re on vacation. In our own home (we only have a share in the one in TN). We shall make the best of it, despite the weather!
This next picture looks more like work so far as I am concerned:
They don’t look too happy, those gymnasts! Whereas, by contrast…
(Three of those boys are seriously thin, though… need to bulk up, lads!)
(That’s more like it!)
(Looks like fun!)
Finally, two example of artistry! Felt-tip pens at work (above) and (below) the lads (and lasses) of Deerness acrobatic gymnastics club in the north of England show off a few of their balances on British TV.
Properly dressed for acro, in my view – rather than the strange costumes (and socks!) they are obliged to wear in competition.
Links to TC’s book collection – gay love, acrobatics, circus and adventure:
Enjoy your Easter break! Dave is calling me to come stir something in the kitchen. A small post-script, below, for him and other cat lovers who may be viewing! And now, Osian arrives at the door to see if anyone wants to wrestle. Sounds good, but one of us is going to have to stay and stir…