As a boy I loved skimming stones. I had hopes it would be recognised one day as the serious, skilled international pastime it clearly was. I was watching television one day when a programme came on about the ridiculous events people were suggesting for inclusion in the Olympics. I think one was acrobatic cycling. It was probably a spoof but when we went on holiday to Wales a few weeks later it spurred me onto increasingly impressive achievements as a stone-skimmer.
It soon became an artform to choose the flattest stones. I would toss stones up, catch them, and rub my chin thoughtfully as I tested their weight in my palm. There was a moral code, albeit unwritten, to the art of skimming. For example, it must be a real stone; no tiles or roof slates smoothed by the tide were allowed. The stone had to be shown before being skimmed. And, of course, a witness had to confirm serious level skims such as seveners or niners. My Dad once claimed double figures with a piece of soap stone in Rhoscolyn, but that remains a truth between him and the tide. Weather conditions are also critical. Too blustery is hopeless, but a certain amount of drift or flight can help. A spot of clear, unbroken shore allows a flat plane of water to angle into. The best action is from the hip with the elbow and wrist kept in tight and whipped from the waist. Maybe one day skimming will make the Olympics. Find your niche and exploit it: sound business advice too.