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Do you want the good news or the bad news?

19 March 2007

Duncan calls me, he's the boss man when it comes to AquaSkipper UK.
'Hi Dave, do you want the good news or the bad news?'

Oh dear, I hate that question. I always go for the bad news.
'Bad news, please.'

'Well, the people organising the Morocco competition forgot to book the flights.'
'They forgot to book the flights.'
'Please tell me there is some good news.'
'There is. You won the competition, you're the face of AquaSkipper!'

And so it was. I, Dave, had been Skipping along for all of three weeks and my little video diaries had shown enough improvement to tell Duncan that I was serious about this whole thing. A shame about Morocco, but at some point the promo video for the 'Skipper will come about, hopefully in a sunny location, with myself at the helm of the 'bouncy bike' or 'pogo stick.' It has earned many names since I started trying to describe the thing, but after a bit of thought and of course the compulsory 'closeness' needed to give a solid object a name, I've decided to call it, somewhat predictably considering my recent Australian history, 'Skippy.'

Word had gotten out that Skippy and I had a challenge up our sleeves, and HTV Wales paid the Cefn Hengoed pool a visit today. Chris Perry, the reporter, wasn't going to do a piece without having his own go on the AquaSkipper, which led to the piece on the night's 6pm news being called 'A Sinking Feeling.' Thank goodness I'd finally gotten the hang of it, there I was bouncing all over the place as Chris spoke, people all over Wales (not to mention the compulsory rows of Cefn Hengoed pupils at the window) staring wide eyed and shaking their heads in amused disbelief. 'I knew it,' they said to each other, 'I told you he was mad.'

And mad I felt, when pushed by Chris for a comfirmation of an endurance challenge on the Skipper. Even mentioning crossing the English Channel makes me question my own sanity, and the resulting story certainly homed in on that particular venture. But I have to think to myself, would crossing the Channel on Skippy honestly be harder than skateboarding across Australia? Different kettle of fish, the sea, but why not swap the rolling hills of eastern Australia for the rolling waves of the Channel? Why not? I've been called mad many times before, and it really doesn't hurt anyone. I'm going to have another session or two in the Cefn Hengoed pool, and then take Skippy back outside. 23 metres is no longer enough. It's time for Open Water.