Monday, July 20, 2009

Homecoming Scotland Curling Camp

I've mentioned the Homecoming International Junior Curling Camp on the blog before (see here). The camp is on this week at the Dumfries Ice Bowl, with the 24 young curlers and their instructors staying at the Barony College, Parkgate.

Olympic Champ Rhona Martin (above) gave the campers an inspirational talk today on the psychology of winning. Excellent it was too.

The camp has a mix of on-ice coaching and classroom sessions. Rhona's session today was one of the latter.

What is more inspirational than to get a chance to examine an Olympic Gold Medal?

In the afternoon, the staff of the Barony College, where students study agriculture, animal care, engineering, equine studies, fisheries studies, forestry and arboriculture, horticulture and veterinary nursing, showed the campers some of the work they do. Here we are in the Animal Care Training Centre, where Lauren Baxter has made a friend!

This little ferret liked having its stomach rubbed by Ruth Martinez Legido from Spain.

The highlight for me though, was to see the reptiles, including some friendly snakes. I like snakes, and they have featured on Skip Cottage before (here). Jennifer Paul had no qualms in handling this corn snake.

Unit head Vicky McClelland encourages Judith McFarlane, the RCCC's Development Manager and camp organiser, to get close to this royal python.

I really enjoyed the opportunity to get up close and personal with this royal python whose name is Lord Byron! What a beautiful animal. Thanks to all the Barony staff for making up an interesting afternoon - certainly the camp programme is varied and interesting. More later in the week if all goes well.

(Today's snake fact. The royal python is so named python regius because this is the snake that Cleopatra used to carry round her arm.)

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