Each year, the good people of High Wycombe weigh the Mayor, the councillors and the MP to check who is gaining weight at taxpayer expense. It’s a magnificent idea but strangely my Westminster colleagues seem reluctant to institute the tradition on Parliament Square.

Unfortunately, I put a little weight on in my first year, it turned out. Here’s me making the most of being booed as a pantomime villain after the fateful cry of “and some more!”

Happily, the weight was handy during the past week, as Beth and I took our summer holiday early at the spectacular Wildwind in Greece. I’m helming the large catamaran on the left:

I thoroughly recommend Wildwind and Vassiliki Bay for sailors and windsurfers. A gentle sea breeze develops through the morning and early afternoon before a quite predictable katabatic near gale arrives late in the afternoon. What’s more, Wildwind is, I think, the only place where powerful boats are provided in strong winds for competent sailors and where they will allow you to single-hand the awesome Hobie Fox in lighter airs. This was my fourth visit and I am sure we will be back.

Meanwhile, with me turning 40 tomorrow, the minor public humiliation of weighing in couldn’t be more timely. I feel inspired to return to regular exercise…

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