Here are the first group of eight teams which took to the ice this morning at the Inverness Ice Centre for the Henderson Bishop Finals. (Click on the image to see larger size). Thanks to Wee Barras for this photo.
The teams were piped on to the ice by David Finlayson, here being paid in the usual manner, and flanked by Fiona Steel and Rosemary Rankin from the organising committee. (Again thanks to Wee for this photo.)
Twenty teams are taking part at Inverness, all representing their own ice rinks, having come through qualifying competitions to get here.
It is my plan to have photos of all the competing teams to show the 'diversity' of the players, but that will come later, once I've got myself a bit better organised after my week at Perth.
In the meantime, what caught my eye this afternoon?
First up are old friends representing Greenacres. Elaine Semple is in the head, no doubt shouting at Alison MacLennan and Pat Ross who are doing the sweeping on Helen Burton's stone.
I could see that Alison was having a great game!
Family stories here. Murrayfiled 1 skip, Shona Watt, has ...
... mum Barbara playing for her. Barbara, of course, is skip of the Scottish Senior Champions, having just won the title at Hamilton. One day, skip of a championship winning rink, the next day sweeping for your daughter. Alongside Barbara in the photo above is Joyce McCluskey.
Chief Umpire Harold Forrester in action, oblivious to what is going on behind. What IS going on behind? I always knew these curlers from Ayr lived life a bit on an angle!
Margaret Richardson, skip of Lanarkshire 2.
The local organising committee have their own uniforms, and logo, with a little curling 'character'! (And no, this is not a 'guess whose bosom' competition! Apologies for the camera shake!)
Abbie Brodie and Lisa MacKellaich weigh up options.
The green buckets at the end of each sheet are a good idea. What do you think they are for. Hint: There are NOT spittoons, nor are they for collecting donations to the umpires' benevolent fund.
Lorraine Shaw delivers. Vicky Dunlop is the sweeper. Representing Ayr.
Beryl Niven, Stranraer. I thought I recognised one of Beryl's team. So ... wait for it ... in the category of 'things you don't see every day' ...
... here is Gail Munro sweeping! Gail of course just yesterday, was skipping her own team in the final of the Co-operative Funeralcare Scottish Curling Championship! Gail is playing last stones for the Stranraer team here at Inverness.
Who's winning? You can find all the results here.
Photos © Skip Cottage