I have left this to the very last minute, but wanted to get an entry in. I mean when the top prize is a whopping 174SCR who've got to at least put yourself in with a chance! Thanks as always to @pete for keeping this going.
Here is the link for this week's contest, go on, give it a go, it's a lot of fun and who knows you might win the big prize.
A Big Thank you
A huge thank you to @clt17 who has donated 100SCR for next week's contest. What a generous thing to do. We all really appreciate it. Right here goes..
I was a normal child like any other, I loved the summer holidays, playing with my friends in the fields on those long warm evenings. I got into football at a young age like the other young people in the area, and was I pretty good. It was the 1970s and times were simple and I guess in those early childhood days football was my real passion. Indeed my parents tell stories of me sleeping with my football, such was my love of the game.
Then for my eight birthday, my Dad, who was quite a techy guy bought me a personal computer. I was the first kid in my neighbourhood to have one and when I went back to school that December, I learned that I was the only one in my school to have one, including the teachers and the principal! My Dad was always ahead of the curve when it came to new technology in those early pioneering days.
That IBM completely changed the course of my life. The street soccer games were replaced by algorithms. Instead of wondering whether Arsenal would win at the weekend, I was wondering how I could improve one my C programs.
At the beginning, I just copied the programs in the manual word for word and watched as these instructions caused output to be created on the screen. It was mesmerising. Once I had written out every program in the book twice, I was hungry for more, so I went to my local library and bought all the books I could find about the C programming language. A few years passed, and without really realising it, I became one of the most knowledgeable people in the world with C. I was eleven years old. Some people hailed me a child prodigy, but for me it was all just fun. School was a breeze for me and I qualified with top marks and ended up attending Harvard.
That's when I really got to know myself I guess. Outwardly, I looked like a bit of a dude, but inwardly I was a geek, that's for sure. But the college environment and the friends I made there, brought that extrovert side out in me, which had gone into hiding back when I first got the IBM all those years ago.
In the end, I didn't finish college, but I learned a hell of a lot about myself, and none of it was academic. Did I drop out because I was flunking my exams? No, on the contrary, I was a straight A student, it was just that I had started up a little venture while I was there, and it went a little better than I had planned.
A former student called Bill took an interest in my side project and we became firm friends. It had been something I had toyed around with for years as I mastered the hardware and software of my IBM, it was an operating system which I called "Doors" at the time.
Bill was a persuasive type though, and he helped me to develop Doors, and we eventually renamed it in 1985 and launched it as "Windows".
It was an overnight success. Never in my wildest dreams, did I think that it would be as successful as it was. A year passed and Bill was keen to go in one direction, but I had a slightly different outlook, so we parted ways, and came to an agreement that I would take a fixed fee which I won't disclose, and an additional 3% of every windows Operating system sold. Well, we both know that turned out to be a pretty good deal.
Days after signing that deal and walking away with a substantial sum of money, the terrible news arrived from home. My best friend and the person who had sent me off on this life trajectory by buying that IBM passed away, my Dad.
I was devastated, and I hit the bottle hard. I had sufficient money to live a party life style for the rest of my days if I wanted to, and it could easily have gone down hill very quickly.
Luckily for me, I managed to somehow pull myself out of the downward cycle, and decided that I had to quit the drink and challenge myself to do something beyond my comfort zone.
I set up a charity trust, and that year, I did my first ever marathon. I raised $150,000 for charity and I matched the amount from my estate.
The following year I did 2 marathons, and the year after I did 10, each year raising more and more money for charity.
For my 20th charity event, I decided to change things up, and I took on my first triathlon.
Every year since, I have tried to take on something more challenging. There have sky dives, bungy jumps, Sahara desert marathons. Last year, I even sailed across the Atlantic solo, now that one was a challenge, let me tell you! That was my 82nd charity fundraiser.
This years fund raiser
That brings me to this years event, which, I really thought would break me. I have an irrational fear of dogs, something I have carried right through life and never overcome, so this year, on my 83rd event (see number on my top), I have decided to take on a solo crossing of the Arctic circle with just a pack of dogs for company.
Am I crazy? Maybe
Will I survive? Possibly
Am I doing something good with my life? Definitely
See ye on the other side!!!!