Sunday 28th August

I was right, there were some members who thought they probably ate something that disagreed with them last night. The steak was superb, John and Deb Deane along with JJ joined us. It all happened quite late – after having attended the prize giving and then carrying “Vice” across to the Ontario Rifle Association/NCRRA club house, we finally returned to the hotel at about 2200 for our very happy Captain to begin cooking.

We heard good news prior to leaving the range last night – Alain Marion rang John Warburton to congratulate him on his win – from home, having recovered enough to be discharged from hospital.

The team made a final effort and managed to finish off any alcohol left in rooms, rifle boxes, refrigeration units or range bags. Despite retiring at around 0200, most of us were awake at the by now accustomed hour of 0700, some who went in search of adventure in Ottawa found their beds at about 0500, by this time Emma had been thrown in the pool.

Having packed bags that had mysteriously put on weight during our stay here, we all meandered out to the range to pack up our hut. The effects of hurricane Irene are being felt already – winds coming from about 1 o'clock, certainly strong sometimes very strong. Enough that shooting today may well have been cancelled due to possible damage to the targets. Captain Richards signed for a step ladder and made his precarious climb up the shoe tree. Being colour blind, he thinks the shoes he has nailed up are brown... Our Governor General's winner then nailed up a pair of wellington boots, previous owner, Freddy Payne. The very strong wind made the ascent of the ladder somewhat hazardous and several pairs of hands were needed to keep it steady.

The team found themselves killing time back at the hotel prior to our departure for the airfield. While Henry was counting his medals he commented that he seemed to have “far less than when he was an Atheling”. Sparky Brooks immediately suggested that he had probably shot better in those days!

Supper, then off to the airport. The sunset whilst driving in was absolutely spectacular, I have never ever seen one like that before. Perhaps the result of approaching tropical storm Irene?

Check in took a while, but we all dutifully assumed “sheep mode” and then negotiated security with no casualties. Rosey and Nutter were put on standby, they made it (sadly not upgraded to business class).

Should the Adjutant claim that he got little sleep on board the flight, the occupants of “steerage” would beg to differ. It's amazing how a certain harmonic in his snoring frequency can even seem to shake the overhead baggage bins.

We left Heathrow 3 weeks ago – almost exactly to the hour. It seems far longer ago than that. We have shot about 3 Bisley Grand Aggregates in that time. We fished, we got very very dirty whilst tidal bore rafting. By necessity we became like an extended family. Most importantly, our team achieved the aim of the tour – to win the Canada match.

The majority of us return to work and “real life” tomorrow – most looking forward to the rest! When meeting up around Bisley Common in future there will  often be conversations that start with “do you remember when?” It has been a very successful tour, making new friends and much enjoyed by everyone. Our thanks to all, family and friends, on both sides of the Atlantic, whether part of the touring team or not who have so generously and willingly made it possible.