Kate Bennett, our President, reported that the feedback on our annual dinner at our January meeting had been very positive and we have already booked the caterers for 2017! The proceeds of our monthly coffee mornings, and donations in lieu of sending Christmas cards, had totalled £128.00 and this has now been sent to the local Parkinsons support group.
Future plans were touched upon and then our speaker arrived. Whilst the winter has been relatively warm and spring has come early, nothing could have prepared us for Susan Howe. She admitted that despite excellent directions, she had missed the village hall and nearly ended up in a ditch. Not sure where that was, but she had been rescued, and escorted, to the right place by a solider in full camouflage. Yes in Abbotts Ann! Some girls have all the luck.
Her talk was entitled “Cantering through a Funny Life” and it does appear that Susan has had a somewhat eventful life.
Despite her mother warning her that she wouldn’t stick at anything, Susan has been a Blue Badge Guide for over 30 years, but before that she was temporarily PA to John Betjeman, despite not having any secretarial skills, especially a lack of typing ability. Nevertheless, they hit it off and struggled successfully through her 12 month stint. At the start of her career she lived in London where her flat was located amidst an armed siege; one of her best friends is Jan the daughter of the vet Donald Sinclair, on whom the character Siegfried Farnon was based in the TV series All Creatures Great & Small. Susan stayed with the family frequently and it appears in real life he was even more eccentric than as portrayed on screen by Robert Hardy. I daren’t even get started on Thomas a Beckett’s toenail!
She certainly made us laugh and was like a breath of fresh air.
For those of you who read last month’s newsletter, you will recall we had asked for limericks this month, alas there was but one anonymous entry …….
There once was a President called Kate
Who went on an extraordinary date
In Andover she dined
Her beau gave her wine
And she ended up coming home late
Next month our speaker is Graham Birchmore and his topic is “Graphology – your character in your handwriting” – just as well these newsletters are typed.
We were delighted to welcome several new faces to our meeting this month and perhaps we should reiterate that it is possible to try before you buy. You don’t have to commit straightaway, so if you have been pondering on paying us a visit, then please do, as we would love to meet you. Please put 31st March in your diary and come to the village hall for a 7.30 p.m. start.
10 March – Supper Club
12 March – Walking Group
29 March – Reading Group
31 March – Monthly Meeting – 7.30 p.m. in the Village Hall – Graham Birchmore: “Graphology – your character in your handwriting”