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In my younger years of living in Earlsferry the weather was quite different than it is today.  Each winter for about two months or so the golf course would be covered in snow often more than two feet deep.  Kinneuchar Loch would freeze completely over.  First,  skaters would venture on to the ice to skirt around the edges where the ice was thick enough.  This was followed by all the boys and girls of the neighbourhood marking out the ice with goals to get hockey matches going.  Goals were marked by stones, and a shoe polish can sufficed for a puck.  For hockey sticks we cut limbs from the nearby trees.  Our skates were the type you screw clamped on to a  pair of old boots.  Then one day a boy from Canada by the name of John Bell showed up and stole the show.  He was attired in the latest Canadian ice hockey boots with permanently attached skates and a professional type ice hockey stick.  He could skate as well backward as forward and with his long flat bladed hockey stick the rest of us didn't have a chance.  And of course because of his prowess he acquired a following and the admiration of the local girls.  Wouldn't you know it! 

Slowly, each day, the ice got thicker.  Swans that had been circling in the water to keep the ice at bay finally gave up and went to the fields and the shoreline for the duration.  When the ice was said to be "bearing", telephones, all over the East Neuk of Fife rang to relay just the one word, "Ice."  The entire area knew the signal message.  Businesses shut down.  Everyone headed for the Loch.  Doctors, lawyers, carpenters, plumbers, farmers, wives, young and old.  The moment had arrived for curling to begin.  On the day the ice became really thick a Bonspiel was declared.  Then people, from all over Fife and further afield arrived to participate in the merriment of the occasion and to compete in the games including John my brother and Jenny his wife who were both very good curlers.  Hundreds and hundreds of people at a time showed up.  Each individual's curling stones were identified by a piece of  ribbon attached to the handle of the stone.  The surrounding area echoed to the sounds of the 42 pound granite stones banging together and rumbling on the ice.  Shouts of "Soup, Soup", (sweep, sweep,)  "Come on, give it all you know," filled the air.  Camaraderie, merriment, glee and hilarity was at its best.  Tables appeared on the ice laden with all kinds of eats and goodies including, black buns, fruit cakes, shortbread and bottles of the elixir of life, Johnnie Walker, Vat 69,  Bells Perth, Glenfiddich, Glenlivet and sherries for the ladies.  The sound of bagpipes filled the air.

Kinneuchar Loch bonspiels were indeed highlights of the year.